Language competence is an essential part of personal, school and economic processes and successes. Children of first-generation immigrants who grow up in families where a language other than English is spoken grow up with a higher than average chance of developing additive bilingualism, ie knowledge of both English and their language of origin.
In American schools, many fail to see this potential. Soon after entering school, the expectations, pressures, and desire to assimilate into the majority culture mean that immigrant children are quick to abandon their traditional terminology for English, Lily Wong Fillmore and other researchers have found.
Studies have also repeatedly demonstrated the positive effects of high-quality additive bilingualism on school achievement, identity development, and family relationships of immigrant children. Richard Brecht and William Rivers, as well as Joshua A. Fishman, Robert Cooper, and Yehudit Rosenbaum, have documented potential national economic and security benefits. This entry describes the benefits of keeping one’s native language.
Lineage speakers represent more than 175 language backgrounds in the United States. Language of origin refers to an immigrant, indigenous, or ancestral language that may have linguistic, ethnic, religious, cultural, or symbolic meaning to a speaker. In the literature, the term is used interchangeably with community language, mother tongue, first language, primary terminology, and mother tongue, although some authors distinguish between these designations.
Despite criticism (as reported by Colin Baker and Sylvia Jones and by Nancy Hornberger) that heritage conjures up images of the past and the ancient rather than images of something modern, valuable and necessary, the term has continued to be used to reflect the wide spectrum of Connections to the diverse heritage preserved by generations of immigrants in our nation.
Not all speakers of the source language are the same; They differ in the levels of competence achieved, motivations, attitudes and the degree of ethnic attachment to the language. In fact, some individuals retain very little of their ancestral languages and are still known as heritage speakers because they retain some level of passive knowledge of the language.
Additionally, native speakers differ from traditional foreign language learners in that they are likely to possess cultural knowledge that allows them to understand subtle nuances and practice culturally appropriate behaviors more easily than those learning the same language as a foreign language.
Often, however, speakers of the language of origin have not received any formal instruction in the language and thus may lack the prestige or formal registers of the language, literacy skills, a highly developed vocabulary and grammatical accuracy in the language. Because of the wide variety of life circumstances that a person can associate with a language, there is debate about the characteristics and linguistic profiles of speakers of the language of origin.
Despite the uncertainties about what constitutes a speaker of a lineage language, a wealth of literature has developed on the impact of lineage retention on the growing population of immigrant children in the United States. One of society’s greatest ills is the poor academic performance of minority students. This is exemplified by the large performance gap between language minority students and majority population students and high school dropout rates, particularly among young Latinos.
Thanks to Sally Wide | #Advantages #bilingualism #languages #origin