The Language Revolution
Episode 9: How can we play with language through talk, poetry and writing?

Episode 9: How can we play with language through talk, poetry and writing?

February 26, 2020

If children love the sound and feel of words, then why don't we all grow up to be writers and poets? In this episode, Cate talks to poet, writer and children's literature expert Michael Rosen about how we go from playing with language as young children, to becoming confident (or not-so-confident) adults who use language for reading, talking and writing. Why does he think being silly is a good idea sometimes? Doesn't writing or poetry have to be deadly serious? And why is learning through talk so important to both children and adults, not just in arts subjects but in scientific contexts, like hospitals, too?

Episode 8: How can linguistics help teachers?

Episode 8: How can linguistics help teachers?

November 5, 2019

What's the scariest two-word horror story? English grammar. If linguistics is the Mount Everest of subjects, then grammar contributes to altitude sickness in all but the most experienced climbers. In this episode, Cate talks to linguistics expert Professor David Crystal about why linguistics matters, how we can untangle ourselves from grammatical confusion, and start playing with words again. Children are, after all, natural rap poets and learning grammar is just like driving a car, taking us to exciting new places.

Episode 7: What’s in an accent?

Episode 7: What’s in an accent?

October 27, 2019

Scouse? Cockney? Received Pronunciation? Do you speak with an accent? Join Cate in discussion with Professor David Crystal and Ben Crystal about English accents past and present. What did a London accent sound like in Shakespeare's day compared to today? Is there a 'standard' accent we should aim for? Find out in Episode 7 of The Language Revolution Podcast.

Episode 6: How can Shakespeare help us talk to each other?

Episode 6: How can Shakespeare help us talk to each other?

October 15, 2019

If Shakespeare were alive today, would he be a public speaking coach helping business leaders and professionals 'talk like TED'? In the sixth episode of The Language Revolution Podcast, Cate talks to actor, writer and producer Ben Crystal about oracy and the art of speaking in public, and whether Shakespeare could be a route into helping foster a love of talking.

Episode 5: What is the best way to raise bilingual children?

Episode 5: What is the best way to raise bilingual children?

July 7, 2019

Is there a recipe for raising bilingual children? In Episode 5 we discuss the prevalent myths around bilingualism, such as whether children will get confused learning two or more languages, and explore different methods of introducing languages at home even if parents are not themselves multilingual. What role does language acquisition have to play in a child's overall development? Can technology be a useful part of the process? 

Episode 4: How do we learn to speak?

Episode 4: How do we learn to speak?

June 23, 2019

Talking. It's easy right? But how does a baby learn to speak? What are the stages? And how can parents support the process of language acquisition? In this fourth episode of The Language Revolution Podcast, Cate talks to Dr Katerina Kantartzis about tuning into a baby's conversational cues, what is 'normal' and signs to look out for in speech development, why singing is so special to humans, and whether or not you can stop humans from communicating. 

Episode 3: How can we solve the UK languages crisis?

Episode 3: How can we solve the UK languages crisis?

April 28, 2019

Have the Brits always been 'rubbish at languages' or are we just experiencing a period of linguistic inertia? Since everyone speaks English, is there much point in learning foreign languages? In the third part of their discussion, Cate Hamilton and Thomas Bak look at why languages are not just a nice addition to our school curriculum but central to our culture and society, and to our understanding of the world. It's time for a language revolution!

Episode 2: When is the best age to learn a language?

Episode 2: When is the best age to learn a language?

April 21, 2019

Is there a perfect age to learn a language? Is it ever too late to start? Should the NHS prescribe languages to older adults? What if you already have dementia, is it too late then? Join linguist and teacher Cate Hamilton as she explores these questions with neuroscientist Thomas Bak and tries to uncover the answer to WHEN learning languages will be most beneficial to us, and whether it is ever too late.

 

Episode 1: Is it normal to speak more than one language?

Episode 1: Is it normal to speak more than one language?

April 12, 2019

As the UK faces a languages crisis, with numbers dropping up to 50% in take-up of GCSE Modern Languages since 2003 and a £48bn deficit in the UK economy due to a shortage of linguists, join languages teacher and entrepreneur Cate Hamilton and neuroscientist Thomas Bak as they discuss how humans learn and process languages, and why being multilingual is (and always has been) normal. Part 1/3.