Effects on brain of bilingualism

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-16-2001
Effects on brain of bilingualism
26
Mon, 05-31-2010 - 1:00am
'Bilingual brain' effects probed


A project at Bangor University aims to explore the benefit of being bilingual.



Researchers will be recruiting 700 people aged between two and 80 to take part in the £750,000 programme.



Prof Virginia Gathercole said the obvious benefits included being able to converse and to participate in two cultures.



But she said there was also evidence of non-language benefits, such as the ability to protect the brain from ageing.



"The very act of being able to speak, listen, and think in two languages and of using two languages on a daily basis appears to sharpen people's abilities to pay close attention to a aspects of tasks relevant to good performance," she added.


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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2004
Mon, 05-31-2010 - 6:14am

Hmmm to bad it doesn't help normal memory problems, sigh. I have a horrible memory.

I wonder if the studied people who took a language for a few years, what kind of effects that had. Since that is what happened in High school for me...spanish. I have forgotten most of it. I guess if I needed to start learning again I could pick it up faster than before. Should have studied German in school, would have made things so much easier now. I should slap whoever told me spanish was easier to learn
and maybe having some dream to tell me to take German you will need it in the future would of helped


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-16-2001
Mon, 05-31-2010 - 6:30am

You would probably pick it up very quickly. It's always there, somewhere.

When I tried to learn Italian here back in the late 80s, it was my Spanish that kept popping up. My Italian teacher would say, "That was perfect! Now, say it in Italian instead of Spanish." Hah!












iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2004
Mon, 05-31-2010 - 6:49am
When I first moved here and started learning German, my Spanish was poppiing up too...but now I try to think of Spanish and I only get a German word, I will have half a Spanish sentance in my head with a German word thrown in there.


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-09-2007
Mon, 05-31-2010 - 9:31am

“Hmmm to bad it doesn't help normal memory problems, sigh. I have a horrible memory.”


Positively it doesn’t do much for memory issues.

 
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-06-2002
Mon, 05-31-2010 - 7:42pm

Interesting.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2004
Tue, 06-01-2010 - 6:48am

Usually gives me a headache! I come home from my parttime job and normally have a headache (could be the cleaning chemicals), I tell my husband and he jokes that it is because I don't like working. Hah! My job is ok...it is the trying to speak and think in German that can be bad.


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-06-2002
Tue, 06-01-2010 - 12:02pm
I suppose it would give you a headache too.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-09-2007
Wed, 06-02-2010 - 2:21am

I think you are correct about the headache.

 
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2004
Wed, 06-02-2010 - 5:55am
A large group! My brain would be waving 20 white flags and screaming I surrender I surrender, please no more!!! :) I can't follow more than 2 people. So in a large group I have a very hard time following conversations. It is best for me when I concentrate on one person...I really need to hit my books again and learn some more words. Laziness...sigh...I start working full time in the middle of July so I will need to pick it up again. I like to understand all the gossip!!!


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker


Lilypie Zweiter Ticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-16-2001
Wed, 06-02-2010 - 6:41am

Oh yeah... headache! The problem with being with more than two people is that they forget that we are not fluent speakers yet and they just race away with their conversation.

Another problem is that in language classes the teachers tend to have neutral accents, will certainly have clear pronounciation and they are in the habit of structuring sentences in a way that students understand. Their cadence is slower, too. In real life, people have their regional accents, use idioms, jargons, slang and there are the quick shorthand to cultural or social references.

One evening I invited one of my jewellery instructors and her friend over for dinner. They were talking about the Monster of Florence (a or a group of mass murderers that killed 16 in Florence), all the theories, etc. Both had different accents, both spoke super fast, and that was the first time I had heard about Il Mostro. I could more or less understand because I understood every 4 or 5 words. My Japanese flatmate had a polite look but glassy eyes LOL!












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