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Lara Cowell

Bedtime Stories for Young Brains - 0 views

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    This month, the journal Pediatrics published a study that used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study brain activity in 3-to 5-year-old children as they listened to age-appropriate stories. The researchers found differences in brain activation according to how much the children had been read to at home.

    Children whose parents reported more reading at home and more books in the home showed significantly greater activation of brain areas in a region of the left hemisphere called the parietal-temporal-occipital association cortex. This brain area is "a watershed region, all about multisensory integration, integrating sound and then visual stimulation," said the lead author, Dr. John S. Hutton, a clinical research fellow at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.

    This region of the brain is known to be very active when older children read to themselves, but Dr. Hutton notes that it also lights up when younger children are hearing stories. What was especially novel was that children who were exposed to more books and home reading showed significantly more activity in the areas of the brain that process visual association, even though the child was in the scanner just listening to a story and could not see any pictures.

    "When kids are hearing stories, they're imagining in their mind's eye when they hear the story," said Dr. Hutton. "For example, 'The frog jumped over the log.' I've seen a frog before, I've seen a log before, what does that look like?"

    The different levels of brain activation, he said, suggest that children who have more practice in developing those visual images, as they look at picture books and listen to stories, may develop skills that will help them make images and stories out of words later on.

    "It helps them understand what things look like, and may help them transition to books without pictures," he said. "It will help them later be better readers because they've developed that part of the brain
Lara Cowell

Why Toy 'Minion' Curse Words Might Just All Be in Your Head - 0 views

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    McDonald's swears up and down that the little yellow "Minions" Happy Meal toy is speaking only nonsense words and not something a little more adult. Experts say the company may be right, and the curse words many hear may be tied to how our brains are primed to find words even when they're not really there.

    "The brain tries to find a pattern match, even when just receiving noise, and it is good at pattern recognition," says Dr. Steven Novella, a neurologist at the Yale School of Medicine. "Once the brain feels it has found a best match, then that is what you hear. The clarity of the speech actually increases with multiple exposures, or if you are primed by being told what to listen for" - as most people who heard the toy online already had been.

    The technical name for the phenomenon is "pareidolia," hearing sounds or seeing images that seem meaningful but are actually random. It leads people to see shapes in clouds, a man in the moon or the face of Jesus on a grilled cheese sandwich.
Lara Cowell

UH leads initiative to build state's multilingual workforce - 1 views

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    The University of Hawaii plays a lead role in a major statewide initiative called the Hawaii Language Roadmap, which aims to create a robust, multilingual workforce in Hawaii. This video gives an overview of the project. On June 16, 2015, thanks to the efforts of several stakeholders, including the Hawaii Language Roadmap, Hawaii's Board of Education unanimously voted to approve a Seal of Biliteracy for Hawaii's public school students. The policy adopted by the BOE reads as follows:

    The Board of Education hereby establishes a Seal of Biliteracy to be awarded upon graduation to students who demonstrate high proficiency in either of the State's two official languages and at least one additional language, including American Sign Language; provided that a student who demonstrates a high proficiency in both of the State's two official languages shall be awarded a Seal of Biliteracy.

    The purposes of the Seal of Biliteracy are to recognize the importance of: (1) enabling students to be college, career, and community ready in today's global society; (2) establishing an educational culture that recognizes and values the wealth of linguistic and cultural diversity students bring to the classroom; (3) supporting opportunities for study of and increasing proficiency in 'Ōlelo Hawai'i, an official language of the State of Hawai'i; and (4) encouraging partnerships with institutions of higher education and community organizations to increase access to language instruction in a variety of languages.

    The Department of Education shall implement the Seal of Biliteracy, including developments of criteria that students must satisfy to receive the Seal.

    Rationale: The Board of Education recognizes that there is personal, cultural, social, academic, and vocational/occupational value in encouraging students to maintain, or develop, proficiency in more than one language.
Lisa Stewart

Mishearings - NYTimes.com - 0 views

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    Speech must be decoded by systems for semantic memory and syntax. Speech is open, inventive, improvised; it is rich in ambiguity and meaning. There is a huge freedom in this, making spoken language almost infinitely flexible and adaptable - but also vulnerable to mishearing.
hcheung-cheng15

Neuroscience Shows Why You Can't Spot Liars - 0 views

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    Some people subconsciously display the telltale signs of deception that make their lies relatively easy to spot -- but other liars are much more elusive. Neuroscience has been looking into what happens in the brain to explain this difference.
Lara Cowell

Scientific Babel : Why English rules - 0 views

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    English is now the language we all use to communicate science. But while it may feel inevitable, the domination of English is very recent and may be down to geopolitics and other accidents, argues Michael Gordin's book, _Scientific Babel_.
tainoathompson16

A Human Language Gene Changes the Sound of Mouse Squeaks - 0 views

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    Scientists have implemented the human gene deemed responsible for our ability to communicate into a strain of mice. This could be the first step towards having talking animals someday, and it also allows us to understand more about how genetics affect language.
amywestphalen15

WaitChatter Helps You Learn A New Language While You Wait For IM Replies - 0 views

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    Learn a new language while you instant message!
dsobol15

JSTOR Critical Period - 0 views

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    Abstract: The critical period hypothesis holds that first language acquisition must occur before cerebral lateralization is complete, at about the age of puberty. One prediction of this hypothesis is that second language acquisition will be relatively fast, successful, and qualitatively similar to first language only if it occurs before the age of puberty.
dsobol15

Persuasive Discourse Impairments in Traumatic Brain Injury - 0 views

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    Considering the cognitive and linguistic complexity of discourse production, it is expected that individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI) should face difficulties in this task. Therefore, clinical examination of discourse has become a useful tool for studying and assessment of communication skills of people suffering from TBI.
srafto16

The Rise of Emoji on Instagram Is Causing Language Repercussions - 0 views

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    The increasing use of emojis is causing a drop in English slang and is slowing become a new language.
kailanamilne15

How the language you speak changes your view of the world - 0 views

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    The past 15 years have witnessed an overwhelming amount of research on the bilingual mind, with the majority of the evidence pointing to the tangible advantages of using more than one language. Going back and forth between languages appears to be a kind of brain training, pushing your brain to be flexible.
srafto16

Language Shapes Thoughts-and Storm Preparations - 0 views

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    Our words shape the way we perceive, describe, and remember things.
saituimoeai15

Power of Words - Dr. Maya Angelou - 0 views

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    This powerful video explains the what honor it is to have words. How we use our words in our lives should mean something and should be used for good.
saituimoeai15

The Power of Words - 0 views

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    This is a great video I thought I would share. It represents the power of words and how amazing language can turn the hearts of men.
Zachary Soenksen

Think your world view is fixed? Learn another language and you'll think differently | P... - 0 views

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    New research shows that bilingualists can view the world in different ways depending on the language they are operating in.
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    Modern German language sounds very disparate in comparison to modern English. New research finds that your language determines your literal perspective of the world due to its grammar.
Lara Cowell

Walt Whitman, "Slang in America" - 0 views

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    The father of modern American poetry, Walt Whitman, celebrates the importance of slang: "...perhaps Language is more like some vast living body, or perennial body of bodies. And slang...is afterward the start of fancy, imagination and humor, breathing into its nostrils the breath of life.
amywestphalen15

The world's languages, in 7 maps and charts - 0 views

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    These seven maps and charts, visualized by The Washington Post, will help you understand how diverse other parts of the world are in terms of languages. 1. Some continents have more languages than others Not all continents are equally diverse in the number of spoken languages.
jamelynmau16

How the brain listens to literature - 0 views

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    When we listen to stories, we immerse ourselves into the situations described and empathize with the feelings of the characters. Only recently has it become possible to find out how exactly this process works in the brain. Scientists have now succeeded using an fMRI scanner to measure how people listen to a literary story.
abae15

A Plea For Linguistic Tolerance - 0 views

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    The English language is not sick. It is not even afflicted with a head cold, much less languishing on its deathbed. Nor is it under attack: there are no nefarious forces conspiring to change it from an eloquent tongue to a series of grunt and emoticons.
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