International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future.
Improving the lives of women is very important to me, especially since women continue to be oppressed all over the world – including in my own country. I truly believe education is the key to empowerment and equality for all human beings, but more specifically, the knowledge of foreign languages is essential.
So how can we encourage more women to not only learn foreign languages, but also to show their skills to the rest of the world in order to encourage even more women to learn? Here is a conversation among three female polyglots, Susanna, Jana and Fasulye on this topic. I wasn’t able to participate, but I did send some research on the issue of gender in language learning which Susanna mentions, though sadly there is very little to no research on gender in language learning in independent settings, i.e. self-study instead of classes.
I am teaching beginning French this semester and since all of the classrooms are equipped with computers and projectors, I have been delighting my students with weird songs and videos to reinforce the vocabulary they are learning. So for beginning learners of French or other French teachers who want to use videos in class, here […]
Around the world, there is a conventional thought that foreign languages should only be taught by native speakers and that the students’ native language should be banned from the classroom. This is especially commonplace among English as a Second or Foreign Language schools which tend to exclusively employ native speakers of English, even if they […]
Anna Wierzbicka is a Polish-Australian linguist who has extensively researched intercultural linguistics, semantics and pragmatics. I have been reading many of her books and articles for my PhD research because she is interested in how language reflects ways of living and thinking, and more specifically, how the lexicon or words of a language can provide […]
Happy Australia Day to my Aussie friends! Australia Day commemorates the arrival of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove in 1788. The Commonwealth of Australia was officially formed on January 1, 1901, when the colonies federated but this date is not widely known as Commonwealth Day since it is already a public holiday (New Year’s […]
I was warned about the high cost of living in Australia before moving here, though luckily it is not as bad as I thought it would be. Perhaps it is because I came directly from France rather than the US, but I feel as though the only expense that is very high in Australia is rent. Yet […]
My second book published by Dover Publications, Great French Short Stories of the Twentieth Century: A Dual-Language Book, is now available! The original French stories are on the left page and literal English translations are on the right page. There are 15 stories representing authors and settings from France and other French-speaking areas such as […]
Traveling by train is still a pretty nice experience in France, and even though Australia is just as big as the US, long-distance train travel across the continent is quite enjoyable Down Under too. I have taken the high-speed TGV and slower regional TER trains in France numerous times, and when I first arrived in […]
Traveling from Australia to France always involves a lot of flying (ok, Australia to Anywhere involves a lot of flying), but changing seasons is another big shock that is hard to get used to. I spent Christmas in summer with temps in the 30s C / 90s F and then I came back to the […]
I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In January 2010, I started focusing more on teaching and learning languages in general. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at the university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling (though now my trips are usually in Australia) and being an American abroad.
Buy My French Books
My Say it in French phrasebook and Great French Short Stories dual-language book (both published by Dover Publications) are available at Amazon.com.
The 2nd edition of French Language Tutorial is now available as a PDF book. It has been updated with much more vocabulary, sample sentences, and cultural information, plus extended vocabulary lists, cross-referenced topics, and an alphabetical index.
Visit the Store to buy the PDF e-book for $14.95 or paperback book for $29.95.