Archivo de la etiqueta: English lessons in Noia

White Winter Melodies

Bob Dylan – Girl of the North Country (1962)

Lyrics:

If you’re traveling in the north country fair
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline
Remember me to one who lives there
For she was once a true love of mine.

Well, if you go when the snowflakes storm
When the rivers freeze and summer ends
Please see for me if she’s wearing a coat so warm
To keep her from the howlin’ winds.

Please see from me if her hair hanging down
If it curls and flows all down her breast
Please see from me if her hair hanging down
That’s the way I remember her best.

Well, if you’re traveling in the north country fair
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline
Please say hello to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine.

If you’re travelin’ in the north country fair
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine.

Sonny Boy Williamson – Nine Below Zero (1963)

Lyrics:

Yeah, ain’t that a pity, people ain’t that a cryin’ shame
Ain’t that a pity, I declare it’s a cryin’ shame
She wait till it got nine below zero, and put me down for another man
I give her all my money, all of my lovin’ and everything
All of my money, all of my lovin’ and everything
It done got nine below zero and she done put me down for another man
Nine below zero, the little girl she done put me down
Nine below zero, the little girl she done put me down
She know I don’t have nowhere to stay, and I don’t have not one dime

Vashti Bunyan – Winter is blue (1965)

Video:

Lyrics:

Winter is blue
Living is gone
Some are just sleeping
In spring they’ll go on

Our love is dead
Nothing but crying
Love will not find even
One more new morning

Why must I stay here
Rain comes I’m sitting here
Watching love moving
Away into yesterday

Winter is blue
Everything’s leaving
Fires are now burning
And life has no reason

I am alone
Waiting for nothing
If my heart freezes
I won’t feel the breaking

Why must I stay here
Rain comes I’m sitting here
Watching love moving
Away into yesterday

Mamas & Papas – California Dreamin’ (1965)

Lyrics:

All the leaves are brown and the sky is gray.
I’ve been for a walk on a winter’s day.
I’d be safe and warm if I was in L.A.;
California dreamin’ on such a winter’s day.

Stopped in to a church I passed along the way.
Well I got down on my knees and I pretend to pray.
You know the preacher liked the cold;
He knows I’m gonna stay.
California dreamin’ on such a winter’s day.

All the leaves are brown and the sky is gray.
I’ve been for a walk on a winter’s day.
If I didn’t tell her I could leave today;
California dreamin’ on such a winter’s day.
California dreamin’ on such a winter’s day.
California dreamin’ on such a winter’s day.

Simon & Garfunkel – Hazy Shade of Winter (1966)

Lyrics:

Time, time, time, see what’s become of me.
While I looked around for my possibilities,
I was so hard to please.
But look around, the leaves are brown,
And the sky is a hazy shade of winter.
Hear the salvation army band
Down by the riverside, it’s bound to be a better ride
Than what you’ve got planned,
Carry your cup in your hand.
And look around you, the leaves are brown now,
And the sky is a hazy shade of winter.
Hang on to your hopes, my friend.
That’s an easy thing to say but if your hopes should pass away,
It’s simply pretend, that you can build them again.
Look around, the grass is high, the fields are ripe,
It’s the springtime of my life.
Oh, seasons change with scenery,
Weaving time in a tapestry,
Won’t you stop and remember me?
At any convenient time.
Funny how my memory skips while looking over manuscripts
Of unpublished rhyme,
Drinking my vodka and rhyme.
I look around, the leaves are brown,
There’s a patch of snow on the ground,
Look around…

The Bangles – Hazy Shade of Winter (1987/2011 Cover)

Tom Rush – Urge for Going (1968)

Lyrics:

And I awoke today and found the frost perched on the town
It hovered in a frozen sky and gobbled summer down
When the sun turns traitor cold
And shivering trees are standing in a naked row
I get the urge for going but I never seem to go
And I get the urge for going when the meadow grass is turning brown
Summertime is falling down winter’s closing in
I had a girl in summertime with summer colored skin
And not another man in town my darling’s heart could win
But when the leaves fell trembling down
And bully winds did rub their face down in the snow
She got the urge for going I had to let her go
She got the urge for going when the meadow grass was turning brown
And summertime was falling down and winters closing in
Now the warriors of winter they give a cold triumphant shout
All that stays is dying all that lives is getting out
See the geese in chevron flight
Flapping and a-racin on before the snow
Got the urge for going they’ve got the wings to go
And they get the urge for going when the meadow grass is turning brown
Summertime is falling down and winter’s closing in
I’ll ply the fire with kindling, I’ll pull the blankets to my chin
I’ll lock the vagrant winter out I’ll bolt my wandering in
I’d like to call back summertime
And have her stay for just another month or so
But she’s got the urge for going I guess she’ll have to go
And she’s gets the urge for going when the meadow grass is turning
brown
All her empire’s are falling down winter’s closing in
And I get the urge for going when the meadow grass is turning brown
And summertime is falling down

The Doors – Wintertime Love (1968)

Lyrics:

Wintertime winds blow cold the season
Fallen in love, I’m hopin’ to be
Wind is so cold, is that the reason?
Keeping you warm, your hands touching me

Come with me dance, my dear
Winter’s so cold this year
You are so warm
My wintertime love to be

Winter time winds blue and freezin’
Comin’ from northern storms in the sea
Love has been lost, is that the reason?
Trying desperately to be free

Come with me dance, my dear
Winter’s so cold this year
And you are so warm
My wintertime love to be

La, la, la, la

Come with me dance, my dear
Winter’s so cold this year
You are so warm
My wintertime love to be

Harry Nilson – Snow (1970)

Lyrics:

Snow
Fills the fields we used to know 
and the little park where we would go
Sleeps far below
In the snow
Gone
It’s all over, and you’re gone
But the memory lives on, although
Our dreams lie buried
In the snow
Sometimes the wind blows through the trees
And I think I hear you callin’ me
But all I see is snow
Everywhere I go
As the cold winter sun sinks low
I walk alone
Through the snow

Anne Murray – Snowbird (1970)

Lyrics:

Beneath this snowy mantle cold and clean
The unborn grass lies waiting
For its coat to turn to green
The snowbird sings the song he always sings
And speaks to me of flowers
That will bloom again in spring

When I was young
My heart was young then, too
Anything that it would tell me
That’s the thing that I would do
But now I feel such emptiness within
For the thing that I want most in life’s
The thing that I can’t win

Spread your tiny wings and fly away
And take the snow back with you
Where it came from on that day
The one I love forever is untrue
And if I could you know that I would
Fly away with you

The breeze along the river seems to say
That he’ll only break my heart again
Should I decide to stay
So, little snowbird
Take me with you when you go
To that land of gentle breezes
Where the peaceful waters flow

Spread your tiny wings and fly away
And take the snow back with you
Where it came from on that day
The one I love forever is untrue
And if I could you know that I would
Fly away with you

Yeah, if I could I know that I would
Fl-y-y-y-y away with you

Yoko Ono – Listen, The Snow is Falling (1971)

Lyrics:

Listen, the snow is falling o’er town,
Listen the snow is falling ev’rywhere.
Between empire state building
And between trafalgar square.
Listen, the snow is falling o’er town.

Listen, the snow is falling o’er town,
Listen the snow is falling ev’rywhere.
Between your bed and mine,
Between your head and my mind.
Listen, the snow is falling o’er town.

Between tokyo and paris,
Between london and dallas,
Between your love and mine.
Listen, the snow is falling ev’rywhere.

Snowfling, snowfall, snowfall,
Listen, listen,
Listen, baby,
Listen.

Galaxie 500 – Listen, Snow is Falling (1990 Cover)

Black Sabbath – Snowblind (1972)

Lyrics:

What you get and what you see
Things that don’t come easily
Feeling happy in my vein
Icicles within my brain (cocaine)Something blowing in my head
Winter’s ice, it soon will spread
Death would freeze my very soul
Makes me happy, makes me coldMy eyes are blind but I can see
The snowflakes glisten on the trees
The sun no longer sets me free
I feel there’s no place freezing meLet the winter sun shine on
Let me feel the frost of dawn
Fill my dreams with flakes of snow
Soon I’ll feel the chilling glowRightDon’t you think I know what I’m doing
Don’t tell me that it’s doing me wrong
You’re the one who’s really the loser
This is where I feel I belongCrystal world with winter flowers
Turn my days to frozen hours
Lying snowblind in the sun
Will my ice age ever come?

The Rolling Stones – Winter (1973)

Video & Lyrics:

Frank Zappa – Don’t Eat the Yellow Snow (1974)

Lyrics:

Dreamed I was an Eskimo
Frozen wind began to blow
Under my boots and around my toes
The frost that bit the ground below
It was a hundred degrees below zero

And my mama cried
And my mama cried
Nanook, a-no-no
Nanook, a-no-no
Don’t be a naughty Eskimo
Save your money, don’t go to the show

Well I turned around and I said oh, oh oh
Well I turned around and I said oh, oh oh
Well I turned around and I said ho, ho
And the northern lights commenced to glow
And she said, with a tear in her eye
Watch out where the huskies go, and don’t you eat that yellow snow
Watch out where the huskies go, and don’t you eat that yellow snow

Jesse Malin & The St. Marks Social (2011 Cover)

Rich Robinson – WInter (2012 Cover)

Steve Miller Band – Winter Time (1977)

Lyrics:

In the winter time
When all the leaves are brown
And the wind blows so chill
And the birds have all flown for the summer
I’m callin’, hear me callin’, hear me callin’

In the winter time
When all the leaves are brown
And the wind blows so chill
And the birds have all flown for the summer
I’m callin’, hear me callin’, hear me callin’
I’m callin’, hear me callin’, hear me callin’
In the winter time

In the winter time
When all the leaves are brown
And the wind blows so chill
And the birds have all flown for the summer
I’m callin’, hear me callin, hear me callin’

Angel – The Winter Song (1978)

Lyrics:

Winter is here, and it’s cold this time of year.
There’s snow everywhere in sight, falling on this winter night.
By candle light, we share this chilly night.
There’s frost on the window pane, winter nights are here again.
There’s a feeling in the air, feel the spirit everywhere.
Winter winds on heaven and earth.
By the fireplace, there’s a smile on every face.
The ice begins to cling, listen to the children sing.
Looking outside, the city lights all come alive.
People running all around, they fill the streets with a happy sound.
There’s a feeling in the air, feel the spirit everywhere.
Winter winds on heaven and earth.
Hear the Angels join the choir, let them take the music higher.
Through winter days on heaven and earth.
There’s a feeling in the air, feel the spirit everywhere.
Winter winds on heaven and earth.
Hear the Angels join the choir, (join the choir) let them take the music higher (higher and higher).
Through winter days on heaven and earth.
There’s a feeling in the air, (in the air) feel the spirit everywhere (everywhere).
Winter winds on heaven and earth (heaven and earth).
Hear the Angels join the choir (join the choir), let them take the music higher… (higher and higher)
Through winter days on heaven and earth (heaven and earth).
There’s a feeling in the air, (in the air) feel the spirit everywhere (everywhere).
Winter winds on heaven and earth (heaven and earth).
Hear the Angels join the choir (join the choir), let them take the music higher… (higher and higher)
Through winter days on heaven and earth (heaven and earth).

Genesis – Snowbound (1978)

Lyrics:

Lay your body down upon the midnight snow,
Feel the cold of winter in your hair
Here in a world of your own,
In a casing that’s grown
To a children’s delight
That arrived overnight.

And here they come to play their magic games
Carving names upon your frozen hand.
Here in a world of your own,
Like a sleeper whose eyes
Sees the pain with surprise
As it smothers your cries
They’ll never never know.

Hey there’s a Snowman
Hey, Hey what a Snowman
Pray for the Snowman
Ooh, Ooh what a Snowman
They say a snow year’s a good year
Filled with the love of all who lie so deep.

Smiling faces tear your body to the ground
Covered red that only we can see.
Here in a ball that they made
From the snow on the ground,
See it rolling away
Wild eyes to the sky
They’ll never, never know.

Hey there’s a Snowman
Hey what a Snowman
Pray for the Snowman
Ooh, Ooh what a Snowman
They say a snow year’s a good year
Filled with the love of all who lie so deep.

Hey there goes the Snowman
Hey,hey there what a Snowman
Hey there lies the Snowman
Hey he was a Snowman
They say a snow year’s a good year
Filled with the love of all who lie so deep.

Hey,there goes the snowman
Hey,hey there what a snowman…

XTC – Snowman (1982)

Lyrics:

Ah

Dumaladipa amadui amadui
Dumaladipa amadui amaduiIt isn’t even winter and I’m freezing, freezing
This sort of feeling isn’t pleasing
And what I want to know, man
(Why, oh, why)
Does she treat me like a snowman?
Ah

It isn’t even winter and I’m freezing, freezing
This sort of feeling isn’t pleasing
And what I want to know, man
(Why, oh, why)
Does she treat me like a snowman?
Ah

She’s been building me
Up quite steadily
Seems like I’ve been here years and years and years and years
I wait patiently
Froze in history
All ice water is tears and tears and tears and tearsShe treats me far too frosty
This hanging on has cost me dear
Oh

Dumaladipa amadui amadui
Dumaladipa amadui amaduiIt isn’t even winter and I’m shivering, shivering
Waiting for the love that’s not delivering
And what I want to know, man
(Why, oh, why)
Does she treat me like a snowman?
Ah

It isn’t even winter and I’m shivering, shivering
Waiting for the love that’s not delivering
And what I want to know, man
(Why, oh, why)
Does she treat me like a snowman?
Ah

She’s been building me
Up quite steadily
Seems like I’ve been here years and years and years and years
I wait patiently
Froze in history
All ice water is tears and tears and tears and tears
She treats me far too frosty
This hanging on has cost me
It seems you would say I was too soft-hearted
If you made a dunce cap I’d don it
People will always be tempted to wipe their feet
On anything with ‘welcome’ written on itIt isn’t even winter and I’m freezing, freezing
This sort of feeling isn’t pleasing
And what I want to know, man
(Why, oh, why)
Does she treat me like a snowman?
Ah

It isn’t even winter and I’m shivering, shivering
Waiting for the love that’s not delivering
And what I want to know, man
(Why, oh, why)
Does she treat me like a snowman?
Ah

does she treat me, does she treat me?
(Why, oh, why) does she treat me, does she treat me?
(Why, oh, why) does she treat me like a snowman?
(Why, oh, why) just like a snowman

Ah

Aztec Camera – Walk Out To Winter (1983)

Lyrics:

Walk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
Chill will wake you, high and dry
You’ll wonder why.We met in the summer and walked ‘til the fall
And breathless we talked, it was tongues.
Despite what they’ll say, it wasn’t youth, we’d hit the truthFaces of Strummer that fell from your wall
And nothing was left where they hung
So sweet and bitter, they’re what we found
So drink them down andWalk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
Chill will wake you, high and dry
You’ll wonder why.
Walk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
Chance is buried just below the blinding snow.You burn in the breadline and ribbons and all
So walk to winter
You won’t be late, you’ll always wait
This generation, the walk to the wall
But I’m not angry, get your gear
Get out of here andWalk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
Chill will wake you, high and dry
You’ll wonder why.
Walk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
Chance is buried just below the blinding snow.Walk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
Chill will wake you, high and dryWalk out to winter, swear I’ll be there.
You’ll find,
Snowblind
This is life
This is life

Kate Bush – Under Ice (1985)

Lyrics:

It’s wonderful
Everywhere, so white
The river has frozen over
Not a soul on the ice
Only me, skating fastI’m speeding past trees
Leaving little lines in the ice
Cutting out little lines
In the ice, splitting, splitting sound
Silver heels spitting, spitting snowThere’s something moving
Under, under the ice
Moving under ice
Through water
Trying to (it’s me) get out of the cold water
It’s me
Something (it’s me), someone help them

Queen – Winter’s Tale (1995)

Lyrics:

It’s winter-fall
Read skies are gleaming, oh
Sea-gulls are flyin’ over
Swans are floatin’ by
Smoking chimney-tops
Am I dreaming?
Am I dreaming?The nights draw in
There’s a silky moon up in the sky, yeah
Children are fantasizing
Grown-ups are standin’ by
What a super feeling
Am I dreaming?
Am I dreaming?
Woh-woh-woh-wohSo quiet and peaceful
(Dreaming) Tranquil and blissful
(Dreaming) There’s a kind of magic in the air
(Dreaming) What a truly magnificent view
(Dreaming) A breathtaking scene
(With the dreams of the world
In the palm of your hand)A cozy fireside chat
(Dreaming) A little this, a little that
(Dreaming) Sound of merry laughter skippin’ by
(Dreaming) Gentle rain beatin’ on my face
(Dreaming) What an extraordinary place!
(And the dream of the child
Is the hope of the, hope of the man)It’s all so beautiful
Like a landscape painting in the sky, yeah
Mountains are zoomin’ higher, uh
Little girls scream an’ cry
My world is spinnin’, and spinnin’, and spinnin’
It’s unbelievable
Sends me reeling
Am I dreaming?
Am I dreaming?Oooh, it’s bliss

Love Unlimited – It may be winter outside (but in my heart it’s spring (1989)

Lyrics:

When the temperature dips
I miss my baby’s arms
His tender finger tips
Knows just how to keep me warmIt may be zero degrees
With the snow falling down
But I’ve got warm and tender love
Just as long as he’s aroundIt may be winter outside
But in my heart it’s spring
How much joy and pleasure, baby
Can one guy bring meWinter nights can be awful cold
Without someone to hold
But when I have him next to me
Baby, I’m in ecstasyIt may be winter outside
But in my heart it’s spring
How much joy and pleasure, baby
Can one guy bring meThroughout my life
I’ve had my share of guys
But he’s been the only one
Who can make my temperature riseThings are just not the same
When he’s not by my side
But yet, I shouldn’t complain
But be waiting with my arms open wideIt may be winter outside
But in my heart it’s spring
How much joy and pleasure, baby
Can one guy bring meIt may be winter outside
But in my heart it’s spring
How much joy and pleasure, baby
Can one guy bring meIt may be winter outside
But in my heart it’s spring
How much joy and pleasure, baby
Can one guy bring me

Fountains of Wayne — Valley Winter Song – (2003)

Lyrics:

Hey sweet Annie
Don’t take it so bad
You know the summer’s coming soon
Though the interstate is choking under salt and dirty sand
And it seems the sun is hiding from the moonYour daddy told you
When you were a girl
The kind of things that come to those who wait
So give it a rest, girl
Take a deep breath, girl
And meet me at the Bay State tonightAnd the snow is coming down
On our New England town
And it’s been falling all day long
What else is new
What could I do
I wrote a valley winter song
To play for youAnd late December
Can drag a man down
You feel it deep in your gut
Short days and afternoons spent pottering around
In a dark house with the windows painted shutRemember New York
Staring outside
As reckless winter made it’s way
From Staton Island to the Upper West Side
Whiting out our streets along the wayAnd the snow is coming down
On our New England town
And it’s been falling all day long
What else is new
What can I do
But sing this valley winter song
I wrote for youAnd the snow is coming down
On our New England town
And it’s been falling all day long
What else is new
What can I do
But sing this valley winter song
I wrote for you

Joshua Radin – Winter (2004)

Lyrics:

I should know who I am by now
I walk the record stand somehow
Thinkin’ of winter
The name is the splinter inside me
While I wait

And I remember the sound
Of your November downtown
And I remember the truth
A warm December with you

But I don’t have to make this mistake
And I don’t have to stay this way
If only I would wake

The walk has all been cleared by now
Your voice is all I hear somehow
Calling out winter
Your voice is the splinter inside me
While I wait

And I remember the sound
Of your November downtown
And I remember the truth
A warm December with you
But I don’t have to make this mistake
And I don’t have to stay this way
If only I would wake

I could have lost myself
In rough blue waters in your eyes
And I miss you still

Oh I remember the sound
Of your November downtown
And I remember the truth
A warm December with you
But I don’t have to make this mistake
And I don’t have to stay this way
If only I would wake

Red Hot Chili Peppers – Snow – (2006)

Lyrics:

Come to decide that the things that I tried
Were in my life just to get high onWhen I sit alone
Come get a little known
But I need more than myself this timeStep from the road to the sea to the sky
And I do believe that we rely onWhen I lay it on
Come get to play it on
All my life to sacrificeHey oh
Listen what I say, oh
I got your hey oh
Now listen what I say, ohWhen will I know that I really can’t go
To the well once more time to decide on?When it’s killing me
When will I really see
All that I need to look insideCome to believe that I better not leave
Before I get my chance to rideWhen it’s killing me
What do I really need
All that I need to look insideHey oh
Listen what I say, oh
Come back and hey oh
Look here what I say ohThe more I see, the less I know
The more I like to let it go
Hey oh, whoa, whoa, whoaDeep beneath the cover of another perfect wonder
Where it’s so white as snowPrivately divided by a world so undecided
And there’s nowhere to goIn between the cover of another perfect wonder
And it’s so white as snowRunning through the field where all my tracks will be concealed
And there’s nowhere to goWhen to descend to amend for a friend
All the channels that have broken downNow you bring it up
I’m gonna ring it up
Just to hear you sing it outStep from the road to the sea to the sky
And I do believe what we rely onWhen I lay it on
Come get to play it on
All my life to sacrificeHey oh
Listen what I say, oh
I got your hey oh
Listen what I say, ohThe more I see, the less I know
The more I like to let it go
Hey oh, whoa, whoa, whoaDeep beneath the cover of another perfect wonder
Where it’s so white as snowPrivately divided by a world so undecided
And there’s nowhere to goIn between the cover of another perfect wonder
Where it’s so white as snowRunning through the field where all my tracks will be concealed
And there’s nowhere to goI said hey, hey, yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah, tell my love now
Hey, hey, yeah, oh yeah, tell my love nowDeep beneath the cover of another perfect wonder
Where it’s so white as snowPrivately divided by a world so undecided
And there’s nowhere to goDeep beneath the cover of another perfect wonder
Where it’s so white as snowRunning through the field where all my tracks will be concealed
And there’s nowhere to goI said hey oh yeah, oh yeah
Tell my love now
Hey, yeah, yeah, oh yeah

Fleet Foxes – White Winter Hymnal (2008)

Lyrics:

I was following the
I was following the pack
All swallowed in their coats
With scarves of red tied ‘round their throats
To keep their little heads
From fallin’ in the snow
And I turned ‘round and there you go
And, Michael, you would fall
And turn the white snow red as strawberries
In the summertimeI was following the pack
All swallowed in their coats
With scarves of red tied ‘round their throats
To keep their little heads
From fallin’ in the snow
And I turned ‘round and there you go
And, Michael, you would fall
And turn the white snow red as strawberries
In the summertimeI was following the pack
All swallowed in their coats
With scarves of red tied ‘round their throats
To keep their little heads
From fallin’ in the snow
And I turned ‘round and there you go
And, Michael, you would fall
And turn the white snow red as strawberries
In the summertime

Pentatonix – White Winter Hymnal (2014 Cover)

D.I.A – White Winter Hymnal (2014 Cover – Korean)

Sara Bereilles & Ingrid Michaelson – Winter Song (2008)

Video & Lyrics:

Ronan Keatin – Winter Song (2009 Cover)

Ray Lamontagne – Winter Birds (2008)

Lyrics:

It’s the Widow now that owns that angry plow
The spartan Mule and The Crippled Cow
The fallow field that will yield no more
As the fox lay sleeping beneath her kitchen floorThe stream can’t contain such the withering rain
And from the pasture the fence it is leaning away
The clouds crack and growl
Like some great cat on the prowl
Crying out, «I am, I am» over and over againThe days grow short
As the nights grow long
The kettle sings its tortured song
As many petaled kiss I place upon her brow
Oh, my lady, Lady I am loving you nowThe winter birds have come back again
Here the sprightly Chickadee
Gone now is the Willow Wren
In passing greet each other as if old, old friends
And to the voiceless trees
It is their own they will lendThe days grow short
As the nights grow long
The kettle sings its tortured song
As many petaled kiss I place upon her brow
Oh, my lady, lady I am loving you nowAnd though all these things will change
The memories will remain
As green to gold, and gold to brown
The leaves will fall to feed the ground
And in their falling, make no soundOh my lady
Lady I am loving you nowI’ve gathered all my money and I’m goin’ to town
To buy my lady a long and flowing gown
‘Cause come tomorrow morning
We’re off to the county fair
I’ll find a yellow flower
And I will lace it in her hair

Mumford & Sons Winter Winds (2009)

Lyrics:

As the winter winds litter London with lonely hearts
Oh the warmth in your eyes swept me into your arms
Was it love or fear of the cold that led us through the night?
For every kiss your beauty trumped my doubt

And my head told my heart
«Let love grow»
But my heart told my head
«This time no
This time no»

We’ll be washed and buried one day my girl
And the time we were given will be left for the world
The flesh that lived and loved will be eaten by plague
So let the memories be good for those who stay

And my head told my heart
«Let love grow»
But my heart told my head
«This time no»
Yes, my heart told my head
«This time no
This time no»

Oh the shame that sent me off from the God that I once loved
Was the same that sent me into your arms
Oh and pestilence is won when you are lost and I am gone
And no hope, no hope will overcome

And if your strife strikes at your sleep
Remember spring swaps snow for leaves
You’ll be happy and wholesome again
When the city clears and sun ascends

And my head told my heart
«Let love grow»
But my heart told my head
«This time no»

And my head told my heart
«Let love grow»
But my heart told my head
«This time no
This time no

Fountains of Wayne – Valley Winter Song (2009)

Lyrics:

Hey Sweet Annie
Don’t take it so bad
You know the summer’s coming soon
Though the interstate is choking under salt and dirty sand
And it seems the sun is hiding from the moon

Your daddy told you
When you were a girl
The kind of things that come to those who wait
So give it a rest girl
Take a deep breath girl
And meet me at the Bay State tonight

And the snow is coming down
On our New England town
And it’s been falling all day long
What else is new
What could I do
I wrote a valley winter song
To play for you

And late December
Can drag a man down
You feel it deep in your gut
Short days and afternoons spent pottering around
In a dark house with the windows painted shut

Remember New York
Staring outside
As reckless winter made its way
From Staton Island to the Upper West Side
Whiting out our streets along the way

And the snow is coming down
On our New England town
And it’s been falling all day long
What else is new
What can I do
But sing this valley winter song
I wrote for you

The Walkmen – While I Shovel the Snow (2010)

Lyrics:

Well they say, “Can’t please everyone”
But I’m stuck on a winning streak
Well today, there’s clarity
And tonight, I see tomorrow
All at once, the winter’s here
All the lochs are frozen over
As I look in back of me
See a shape beside the walkway

Half of my life, I’ve been watching
Half of my life, I’ve been waking up
Birds in the sky could warn me
There’s no life like the slow life

So for now, I’ll take my time
For now, I can’t be bothered
But I learned a lot of things
And I fudged a lot of numbers

Once again, the winter’s here
All the lochs are frozen over
So I look in back of me
See a shape beside the walkway

Half of my life, I’ve been watching
Half of my life, I’ve been waking up
Birds in the sky could warn me
There’s no life like the slow life

Colder Weather – Zac Brown Band (2010)

Video + lyrics:

The Coral – Walking in the Winter (2010)

Lyrics:

We went walking in the winter
It was the coldest
Time of year

It’s where I handed you a letter
You turned around
I disappeared

It said someday
I’ll find my way
And we’ll go walking
In the winter

It’s so hard to make a living
When the world
Is so unkind

But it’s not something
That you’re given
It’s something that
You got to find

It said someday
I’ll find my way
And we’ll go walking
In the winter

And it’s o.k. to close your eyes
Those silver sailing ships
Go sailing by
It’s all in your mind
It’s gonna be alright
This time

Seasons change
Into summer
Fires burning in the dark

I hope sometimes
You read my letter
And know I had to
Play my part

It said someday
I’ll find my way
And we’ll go walking
In the winter

And we’ll go walking
In the winter

The Head & The Heart – Winter Song (2011)

Video & Lyrics:

Kate Bush – Snowflake – 50 Words for Snow (2011)

Lyrics:

1 drifting
2 twisting
3 whiteout
4 blackbird braille
5 Wenceslasaire
6 avalanche
Come on man, you’ve got 44 to go,
come on man, you’ve got 44 to go.
Come on man, you’ve got 44 to go,
come on man, you’ve got 44 to go.
7 swans-a-melting
8 deamondi-pavlova
9 eiderfalls
10 Santanyeroofdikov
11 stellatundra
12 hunter’s dream
13 faloop’njoompoola
14 zebranivem
15 spangladasha
16 albadune
17 hironocrashka
18 hooded-wept
Come on Joe, you’ve got 32 to go,
come on Joe, you’ve got 32 to go.
Come on now, you’ve got 32 to go,
come on now, you’ve got 32 to go.
Don’t you know it’s not just the Eskimo.
Let me hear your 50 words for snow.
19 phlegm de neige
20 mountainsob
21 anklebreaker
22 erase-o-dust
23 shnamistoflopp’n
24 terrablizza
25 whirlissimo
26 vanilla swarm
27 icyskidski
28 robber’s veil
Come on Joe, just 22 to go,
come on Joe, just 22 to go.
Come on Joe, just you and the Eskimos,
Come on now, just 22 to go.
Come on now, just 22 to go,
Let me hear your 50 words for snow.
29 creaky-creaky
30 psychohail
31 whippoccino
32 shimmerglisten
33 Zhivagodamarbletash
34 sorbetdeluge
35 sleetspoot’n
36 melt-o-blast
37 slipperella
38 boomerangablanca
39 groundberry down
40 meringuerpeaks
41 crème-bouffant
42 peDtaH ‘ej chIS qo’
43 deep’nhidden
44 bad for trains
45 shovelcrusted
46 anechoic
47 blown from polar fur
48 vanishing world
49 mistraldespair
50 snow.

Kate Bush – Snowflake (2011)

Lyrics:

I was born in a cloud…
Now I am falling.
I want you to catch me.
Look up and you’ll see me.
You know you can hear me.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
We’re over a forest.
There’s millions of snowflakes.
We’re dancing.
The world is so loud. Keep falling and I’ll find you.
I am ice and dust. I am sky.
I can see horses wading through snowdrifts.
My broken hearts, my fabulous dances.
My fleeting song, fleeting.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
My broken hearts, my fabulous dance.
My fleeting song.
My twist and shout.
I am ice and dust and light. I am sky and here.
I can hear people.
I think you are near me now.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
We’re over a forest.
It’s midnight at Christmas.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
I think I can see you.
There’s your long, white neck.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
Now I am falling.
Look up and you’ll see me.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
In a moment or two.
I’ll be with you.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.
Be ready to catch me.
The world is so loud. Keep falling. I’ll find you.

Ariana Grande – Winter Things (2015)

Lyrics:

It ain’t even cold outside, not where I’m from
Feeling like it’s mid-July under the sun
My jacket don’t get no love, no hats and no gloves, not even a chance to rain
But my baby’s in town and we’re gonna do some winter thingsHey-oh, I wanna pretend we’re at the North Pole
Turning the heat into an ice cold holiday
Made just for me and my baby
Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh-ooh, ooh-ooh
My baby’s in town and we’re gonna do some winter things, heyTake me to the ice-skating rink downtown (no, no, no, downtown)
Even though it’s 100 degrees, gotta get out, ohh
Ain’t no ice or no chills, no snowmen to build, most of our friends at the beach
But my baby’s in town and we’re gonna do some winter things, hey yeahHey-oh, I wanna pretend we’re at the North Pole
Turning the heat into an ice cold holiday
Made just for me and my baby
Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh-ooh, ooh-ooh
My baby’s in town and we’re gonna do some winter things, hey, yeahJust imagine that we’re laughing
In my cabin, chilling by the fireside
Even though this sun is blasting
We can be wherever if we visualizeHey-oh, I wanna pretend we’re at the North Pole
Turning the heat into an ice cold holiday
Made just for me and my baby
Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh-ooh, ooh-ooh
My baby’s in town and we’re gonna do some winter things, hey, yeah

Autumn in New York

Vernon Duke – Autumn in New York (1934)

Lyrics:

Autumn in New York, why does it seem so inviting?
Autumn in New York, it spells the thrill of first knighting
Glittering crowds and shimmering clouds in canyons of steel
They’re making me feel, I’m home

Its autumn in New York that brings the promise of new love
Autumn in New York is often mingled with pain
Dreamers with empty hands, may sigh for exotic lands
It’s autumn in New York, its good to live it again

Autumn in New York, the gleaming rooftops at sundown
Autumn in New York, it lifts you up when you’re run down
Jaded roués and gay divorcées who lunch at the Ritz
Will tell you that it’s divine

This autumn in New York transforms the slums into Mayfair
Autumn in New York, you’ll need no castle in Spain
Lovers that bless the dark on benches in Central Park
Greet autumn in New York, its good to live it again

Fall in Central Park

Autumn in New York

Autumn in New York, they even wrote a song about it that was a great hit sixty years ago. Last weekend the sky was awash in blue, Manhattan at its best, with Central Park gleaming in green and only the crowds marring the views. New York has changed dramatically these last fifty years, but what city has not? The place has gotten richer, but not better as far as the quality of life is concerned. That ghastly Bloomberg midget sold the place to the highest bidders, so developers are singing his praises, not unlike bootleggers paying homage to Al Capone. Manhattan was always chic in the upper east and west sides, but bohemian and gritty and artistic downtown. No longer. The place has been airbrushed for good, a playground for Indian and Chinese billionaires, Russian molls, Arab crooks, as well as American and European money managers, corporate lawyers and international jetsetters. In other words, the place stinks with new and unacceptable money and manners. Developers are king, long live funny money.

The luxurious downtown loft spaces that used to be cheap artist studios in the Fifties and Sixties, were once failed factories and warehouses during the Forties. Economic and cultural evolution is a constant in many cities, but more so in the city that never sleeps. (In fact, it is impossible to sleep when drilling begins at 7.a.m. and one is a night owl.) Cranes are everywhere, new high rise condos sprout like weeds, a horror to end all horrors stands over Madison Avenue in midtown, like an undulating middle finger to good taste, built by a horrible man called Macklowe that I had the bad luck to go to prep school with. Empty apartments sit by the thousands, owned by zillionaires hedging their bets in case the regimes that enabled them to make their money get their comeuppance. This is no longer the city that Fitzgerald’s exuberant prose romanticized, or Gershwin’s syncopations made us jostle and throb. No siree!

Still, memories of a beautiful woman die hard, and that also goes for cities or towns. Take for example Edward Hopper’s ghostly diner that became an emblem of the city, “Nighthawks.” The painting alludes to the city’s alienation and loneliness, Hopper’s most recognizable work. The location of the diner has never been established, although folklore has it that it was on Greenwich Avenue and 11th Street. Records, however, show that only a gas station was there from the 1930’s through the 1970’s. So where was the most famous diner in the world situated? The mystery was solved some years ago by one Jeremiah Moss, a Manhattan enthusiast, who envisioned the island as a Hopper painting filled with golden, melancholy light. (A bit like the poor little Greek boy.) He discovered an interview in which Hopper himself admitted that there was no such diner, just an all-night coffee shop on Greenwich Avenue that he enlarged and simplified and thus painted the loneliness of a large city. Great stuff.

Well, all that loneliness has gone the way of high button shoes, with bakeries and curved windows and dark bricks that loom in the background all disappearing, all tumbling down to make room for glass office towers and ritzy condos. Thank God the great Hopper is not here to see the destruction. They say that the longer one has lived in Manhattan, the more one loves the vanished city, and no one loved the city more than Hopper or yours truly. And, of course, the great E.B. White, who wrote about the great gift New York bestows, “that of loneliness.”

Luncheonettes, newsstand advertisements for 5-cent cigars, automats, and bakeries aside, what I miss more than all of them put together are the places I used to escape to when school and a foreign language called English got too much: The movie palaces that resembled ocean liners from the outside, with immense pillars triumphantly reaching skywards, and smooth curves like a giant woman’s hips. They have all been torn down and replaced by shopping blocks and superstores selling those machines people look at 24/7. Today’s dreary multiplexes have replaced these wonderful over the top palaces, as today’s ghastly films have replaced those dreams one got excited about as the spectacular interiors went dark.

Oh yes, I almost forgot. What about those dark red brick four story houses that lined the avenues with their wrought iron fire escapes standing guard? So called sophisticates called the fire escapes architectural eyesores, but when was the last time any so called sophisticate got it right? Criminals ruined London in the Sixties and New York in the 2000’s, with their glass boxes and inhuman sizes. Fire escapes were beautiful to look at when I was a child, and I still identify them exclusively with the city’s streetscape. Carnegie Hall has them stretched around the back, and someone once called fire escapes “the urban equivalent of the American front porch.” Hear, hear! Norman Rockwell didn’t do too many of them, he was small town rural, but Hopper did and that’s good enough for me. Lenny Bernstein had Maria singing on a fire escape in West Side Story, and Grace Kelly climbed up one to spy on Raymond Burr in Hitchcock’s Rear Window. Poor people slept on them during the hot nights of August, and Holly Golighty sang Moon River on one. What wouldn’t I give for the glass boxes to disappear and for more fire escaped four story houses to come back? Anything and everything, I’d even forsake a threesome with Keira Knightly and Jessica Raine.

Source: http://takimag.com/article/autumn_in_new_york/print#axzz3JGQ99NDs

Joan Chen – Autumn in New York (2000)

Script Excerpt:

EXT. CENTRAL PARK — SEPTEMBER AFTERNOON

A COUPLE moves down a walkway, deep in subdued conversation. All around them trees explode with autumn color. Birds sing. Their path is dappled with leafy shadow.

To their left, on the sunny meadow, TEENAGERS throw saucers and footballs, smoke cigarettes and joints, drink beer and soda, savoring the waning hours of summer.

CLOSER ON THE COUPLE

He is WILLS KEANE, late 40’s to early 50’s, strikingly handsome, impeccably dressed, and supremely poised. At first glance he has the proud glow of a hedonist who in the war against time has been the undisputed victor.

Only a closer look hints at the toll of battle. His shoulders strain under the weight of so much repetition. His eyes are touched by regret. The lines in his face reveal an emerging disenchantment not so much with the world as with himself.

Walking at his side is a WOMAN, 30, attractive and bright. Her name is unimportant because so many have come before her and, if the past prevails, so many will come after.

She listens intently, as Wills finishes speaking —

WILLS

— and I could have waited to tell you, but I wanted to leave no room for misunderstanding.

WOMAN

Well, you certainly didn’t.

EXT. ANOTHER CENTRAL PARK WALKWAY — LATER

Still talking quietly, they pass into a more secluded area of the park–

WOMAN

No, I see how you could feel this way. Of course I do. It’s human. But what I don’t get is why you’d want to announce it so quickly. I mean, we just met. Feelings change. You don’t even know me.

WILLS

Yes, I do. She is amused by his confidence —

WOMAN

Oh, really?

WILLS

The minute I laid eyes on you. It’s the saddest thing about getting older. You know people so quickly. I even knew you’d end up hating me.

WOMAN

Well, you’re wrong. I don’t.

WILLS

(with a weary smile) Give it time.

She laughs. Then he stops. He hears something. She stops. She hears it, too. It’s a GIRL’S VOICE. He casually turns and looks, squinting into the sun.

He takes a few steps and there, between trees, he sees TWO DOZEN PEOPLE sitting on the grass and on folding chairs — most are middle-aged or older with a distinctly intellectual- bohemian look to them.

Standing and addressing them is CHARLOTTE FIELDING, 19, fair, willowy, pale, lovely in an unconventional way. She wears an eccentric hat and a vintage dress. Her bearing is upright, her gaze warm and intelligent, her voice rich with emotion —

CHARLOTTE

— and for weeks I sat by her bed and cried. I told her I loved her and I begged her not to leave me. All I could think about was what I’d lose if she died. And then one night… she was in really bad pain… I stopped thinking about myself for a second and I thought about her. (fighting tears) I stopped crying. I said goodbye. And in less than an hour Ella was gone.

The woman whispers in Wills’ ear —

WOMAN

It’s so sad.

But Wills ignores her. He watches Charlotte with keen interest, touched by the depth and sincerity of her emotion.

CHARLOTTE

I really think it’s possible to hold a person back… cry them back… from dying. That’s what I did to Ella and I’ll never do it to anyone else again. (softly) I hope no one ever does it to me.

She looks out at the group, many of whom are crying. A tear runs down her cheek. She smiles and wipes it away.

The woman, seeing Wills’ interest in the girl, whispers —

WOMAN

So what do you know about her? He knows a great deal. Or at least he thinks he does. But his answer is nonchalant —

WILLS

That she’s just a kid.

He takes the woman gently by the elbow and guides her away. He steals one last look back.

Charlotte, returning to where she was sitting, notices Wills. Their eyes meet and a charge passes between them.

Meanwhile an OLD MAN has risen from his chair —

OLD MAN

I met Ella at City College in 1938… Wills slowly turns and walks away.

Read more: http://www.imsdb.com/scripts/Autumn-in-New-York.html

Video: 

Autumn in New York – by Joan Chen (2000)

Vernon Duke – Autumn in New York Covers

Frank Sinatra (1947)

Billie Holiday (1952)

Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Amstrong (1957)

John Coltrane & Stan Getz (1960)

Jimmy Roselli (1965)

Bing Crosby (1977)

Rosemary Clooney (1991)

Jonathan Kreisberg Group (2008)

Sheila Jordan (2012)

Yaala Ballin (2012)

Élia Batisda & Joan Chamorro… (2017)

Diana Krall (2020)

The Power of Words

The Words We Use

It has become a truism of humanitarian and social impact advocates that the words we use matter. When using terms or phrases that reflect the condescension, discrimination, or hatred of the past—even in jest—an individual can unintentionally undermine a person, practice, or institution. As an editor and communications professional, words are a medium that can be used or abused for good or ill.

Across time, words have shaped revolutions, nations, and wars. When the events of the past have expired into memories or dates on a page in some underused textbook, the words of famous men and women remain.

Gandhi would be the first to advocate that the pen is mightier than the sword.

Staring down the smiling Brazilian shopkeeper, I was suddenly reminded of the opposite challenge: when we have no words, what do we do? I couldn’t remember the last time I had failed to be understood, much less left speechless. Suddenly, I realized how much I had taken for granted my ability to communicate, regardless of context.

Within this publication, a number of authors have touted the benefits of global mindset, of getting outside your comfort zone through an intimate interaction with another culture, whether through the immersion of global pro bono, or through citizen diplomacy and cultural exchange. Confronting a circumstance in which words have little effect has a number of unexpected (and largely positive) consequences. When talking doesn’t work, listening intently is often the next-best option. It is these lessons in listening that enable us to better understand one another in the future, making us better leaders, collaborators, and friends. The more we listen, the more we understand.

The Numbers of Nonverbal Communication

My conversation with the shopkeeper, though imperfect, was ultimately successful. Between our limited understandings of one another’s language, much hand-gesturing, significant patience, and our hand-drawn map we were able to arrive exactly where the shopkeeper intended us to go. Unfortunately, it turned out that the shopkeeper’s intuition about the location of the Chalet, based on the photograph of the gate, was incorrect. Our map, while an accurate reflection of the shopkeeper’s direction, did not bring us to our anticipated destination. While the interaction didn’t immediately result in us finding our way, we were still successful in communicating and understanding each other under problematic conditions.

In such circumstances, non-verbal communication becomes vital in a way it never was before. In truth, when interacting directly with another, words make up only a tiny piece of mutual understanding. Experts approximate that 55 percent of communication is body language, 38 percent of communication is dictated by vocal tone, and only seven percent is actually the words we use.

Turning around and driving back to town, we stopped to ask another friendly passerby. “Rua Dom Pedro?” I queried, now confident at least of the road we were looking for. Straight past the quadrado, right, left, and right were the next set of directions. Now going in the opposite direction, I ignored the fact that the directions were exactly the same as those we had previously received from the shopkeeper. Executing the directions left us at the bottom of a hill, at a T-junction, contemplating whether we had reached the last right, or if we had somehow taken a wrong turn. A man stood next to a gate nearby. We rolled down the window: “Rua Dom Pedro?” The man shook his head. “Rua Dom Pedro?” he muttered something undiscernible under his breath.

For my husband, this was the final straw. Frustrated that I had allowed us to get so far with nothing but a hand-drawn map, he turned the car around and headed back to the shop.

I once again found myself standing in front of the persistently friendly shopkeeper when I had an almost comical realization. Was there a phone number? The shop owner generously offered for me to use his computer to check my email. There, in my inbox, was one unread message from my host, Sandra. “Alicia, please call to let me know when you will arrive!” her phone number listed below the message.

A phone call returned a male British voice. Confused, I spoke cautiously: “Hello… is Sandra there?”

“This is John Carlo, her husband. You must be Alicia.” Never had my mother tongue brought such relief.

Words Are Resources, Too

Words—in any language—are a complex tool, which in the hands of humankind have allowed our species to innovate and advance in powerful ways. In gentlemen’s agreements and contracts alike, words are the foundation of collaboration, partnership, and mutual understanding. Words are an important resource for solving problems, enabling or disabling the efforts of future leaders seeking to develop adaptive solutions to persistent problems in resource-constrained environments. The absence of a common language, while its own resource constraint, forces creativity, resilience, and persistence to find a way.

Source: http://newglobalcitizen.com/story/power-words-use

The Power Of Communication

Whoever said that the pen is mightier than the sword definitely knew what they were talking about. To humans, words are more than a means of communication, they can shape our beliefs, behaviors, feelings and ultimately our actions. Although swords can coerce us, and threaten, nothing is more powerful than a tool which can shape our opinions.

When it comes to language and communication, the rule is that it’s not what you say, but what people hear.  Words are one of the most powerful tools that we as humans possess; they can ignite revolutions or defuse tension. The problem is that words are underestimated as being central to thought and behavior processing as well as decision making.

Dr. Frank Luntz, author of Words That Work: It’s not what you say, It’s what people hear describes the decision making process and communication based on feeling rather than information. “80 percent of our life is emotion, and only 20 percent is intellect, says Luntz in a PBS interview. “I am much more interested in how you feel than how you think. I can change how you think, but how you feel is something deeper and stronger, and it’s something that’s inside you. How you think is on the outside, how you feel is on the inside, so that’s what I need to understand.”

Working as a pollster and a linguistics consultant, Luntz advises the Republican Party on their usage of words, their communications to the press and the world, and in a sense, changes the way that they direct their language to achieve the results that they desire from the public as a whole.

Because we hear so many words and messages in our daily lives, we have developed a system to deal with certain types of messages. People can engage in two types of message processing, either central processing, which is an active and critical thinking process, or peripheral processing, which takes cues from other parts of the message, and evaluates based on other things besides the actual meaning of the message. Central processing is triggered by certain queues, such as involvement and immediacy. In short, if something is going to affect someone and soon, they are going to listen carefully to the message. If they are interested, or compelled to listen, they are much less likely to evaluate what you are saying on a central level.

When it comes to messages of the mass media, most Americans process the information peripherally. This also includes political messages and information. When it comes to politics, the complexity of issues are reduced to peripheral cues like source credibility, attractiveness and emotional words like responsibility and family values.

When it comes to mass media messages, Americans process most information peripherally. Issues such as complexity and disinterest in the message can lead to decision making based on surrounding cues instead of triggering central processing and an active decision.

Politics is full of messages that are designed to trigger peripheral processing cues and behavior based on emotion rather than information.  One word can be completely neutral in emotion while another word meaning the exact same thing can either spark love or rage in those that hear it. The emotion is the trigger, finding the words that cause the emotion is the job of linguistics experts like Luntz. His advise and consultation are partially responsible for the name change of the «Estate tax» to the «Death tax» and its subsequent elimination. «For years, political people and lawyers used the phrase «estate tax.» And for years they couldn’t eliminate it. The public wouldn’t support it because the word «estate» sounds wealthy, explains Luntz. «Someone like me comes around and realizes that it’s not an estate tax, it’s a death tax, because you’re taxed at death. And suddenly something that isn’t viable achieves the support of 75 percent of the American people. It’s the same tax, but nobody really knows what an estate is. But they certainly know what it means to be taxed when you die.»

Republicans have also crafted their language to neutralize the fear of hazards due to global warming. Instead of referring to global warmer, the concept is dubbed «climate change» which lessens fears associated with global warming. Because of this change of behaviors and beliefs simply by the change of words, Luntz has been accused of manipulating language and therefore the audience absorbing the message.

The manipulation is not only isolated to the political or corporate world. Science and science research have also attracted suspicious glances from the public. This is why issues such as stem cells research and other breakthrough technologies are reacted to as vehemently as they are. The public, without proper tools to understand, and bombarded with complicated names and jargon of the science and health fields, are left to jumping on hot button issues like stem cell research. For example, I recently wrote an article about new technologies to reprogram adult tissue cells to pluripotent iPS cells. A reader commented on my article, suggesting that scientists use language to manipulate the public and hide behind words to avoid the hassle from the public. According to the reader, » Scientist have to be more careful about the names they give to their new (life-linked) researches and all of its parts in order to avoid «Xtrem moralists», superstitious and «Science/Tech/Research enemies» witch all the time, are searching and digging for any word slim linkable to any moralist religious or superstitious concepts just to obstruct or forbid it. If Steam Cells technologies had been called something like «XMFT-007″ from its beginnings, Science wouldn’t have gotten all the troubles it has due ignorance. So next time, get abstract names for your new life-linked Research.»

Hiding behind abstract language is not the answer, effective communication is the key. This is another reason why people in power should use language which demonstrates clarity and reduces emotion. The public is also responsible for processing their information and relying on intellect instead of solely relying on peripheral cues. To better understand the way we react to information, research on communication is vital to understanding our reactions, emotions and how they build our behaviors and actions. With this information, we can better prepare effective communication to the public and also guard ourselves from fallacious or leading information designed to target our emotions. Because in the end «Its not what you say, its what they hear.»

Source: http://www.science20.com/erin039s_spin/power_communication_psychology_words_and_language_revealed

Words Have the Power to Change Our Lives

A word has the power to change your life. Think about that for a moment because it is literally an Earth-moving statement – to change your life. For more than a decade, technology has brought words into our lives more than ever before. No longer are words just what we hear, write or read – they have become what we create and how we interact with the world around us.

We all grew up believing the children’s rhyme, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” Yet, at a certain point, you realized that was completely untrue and that words could hurt, just as you learned Pluto was a planet but many years later find out it is just a ball of ice no longer classified as a planet. Words, my friends, change everything! Words have a dramatic effect on what we know, how we interact with people and the decisions we ultimately make. Words can influence us, inspire us or just as easily bring us to tears.

Words change our relationships, our demeanor, our entire system of beliefs, and even our businesses. Being a planet or not being a planet makes a major difference, just as the words “I love you” or “I hate you” have majorly different meanings behind them. Words have a powerful and undeniably overwhelming influence on us – for good and, at times, for bad. Think for a moment how words have changed your life:

Marry me!  It’s a girl! You have cancer. We lost him. You’re hired! You’re fired. We won! We lost. Guilty. Not guilty.

It may not seem intentional, but it has been. At the core, a large “organization of words” shift has taken place right in front of us. As a result, words have forever changed our lives and will continue to change our lives as never before. For the majority of us, not a single day goes by when we fail to interact and create relationships with words. Take Google, for example. Google is a company with a focus on classifying and organizing words. It is a very simple focus, really: to be better than any other entity at organizing words. Now, they may say they organize information, including documents, videos, photos, maps and more. But at the core, they are all words. A document may have many words, but they are always organized in a theme, and a theme can generally be focused to a sentence or title, and a title to a primary subject or word. The same goes for videos, photos, maps and more.

Imagine you are in a doctor’s office and you are told, “you have cancer.”

A single word “cancer” just changed your life and the lives of everyone close to you. Clearly, you listen to what your doctor says, but then you go to a place you know you can get a lot of answers – a search. You may do this when you get home to your computer or tablet or immediately on your mobile phone. But nonetheless, you begin to create and interact with the words by typing a few into the search box: “what is cancer” “cancer treatments” “cancer cures” “cancer survival.” Cancer comes in many forms, so perhaps your search is more specific: “what is triple negative breast cancer” “triple negative breast cancer treatments.” As you type, the words interact with you, providing answers to your questions. As a result, you learn of clinical trials as a treatment option, so you again leverage the interaction with words: “clinical trials for triple negative breast cancer,” and you find a powerful option that gives you another word – hope. Then and there, words and our relationship to them cross over into something that changes our life once again – twice in the same day, perhaps.

The meaning and value of words have become largely dependent on real-time demand, and therefore, the perceived value is determined solely by the epicenter of time and need. In other words, it’s determined when a moment in time crosses paths with a particular individual’s needs and the two interact. In the new economy, words also have an economic value. Therefore, a search for “cancer” is infinitely important and invaluable for the person that was just diagnosed, while the words “free shipping” may be most important and valuable for someone about to buy a “42inch 3D TV,” and both words have monetary value to some third party (i.e. a research institute or Sony) as well as the provider (i.e. Google or Amazon).

Services like Twitter have also focused on words (very few, in fact, given the 140 character limit), defining trends via hashtags (a word following a # – i.e. #cancer). That said, words transcend both search and Twitter. Words have become the key to everyday life. In our vehicles, many of us use words to get assistance, either via a service such as OnStar (I need help, my car won’t start) or via GPS (and don’t turn left when told to turn right, or the next word to leave your mouth may well be S%*T).

On eCommerce websites, such as Amazon.com, FatCork.com, BestBuy.com or even ColonialCandle.com, words change our experience: Free shipping, We recommend, One Click Checkout, Out of stock, Pre Order, etc. The way we interpret the end result of each of those seemingly simple words changes our present and future behaviors in real time. In fact, free shipping is still considered one of the top triggers to purchase.

In the media industry, search – both paid search and organic (SEO) – is a huge segment of the industry developed around and focused on the use of words. Words have implications in both paid search and SEO. One of the biggest factors includes relevancy: how relevant are the words searched – to the text ad copy – to the words on the landing page – to the words on the website? They are all interconnected. Words have interconnected us with technology.

Consider the new iPhone 4S. A new feature is Siri, a tool that uses words to assist the user (and with amazing accuracy). By speaking out loud to the phone, users can send messages, schedule meetings, find nearby restaurants, make phone calls and more. If you haven’t tried it, you should. You will want to buy the new iPhone 4S just for this feature. In fact, Siri might even save your life, given you no longer have to look at the phone to select a number to dial, thus keeping your eyes on the road.

Words also have great impact in the social media context. If a company truly manages social correctly and mines the data for trends via social intelligence analysis, what they would find are great differences in their customer mindset, purchase strategy, message associations and ultimately needs. This learning can translate into applied strategies in Customer Service, TV, Print, Outdoor, Event and Digital Media channels to further connect with customers in a way – and in words – the customer wants and expects from the business, instead of what the business thinks the customer wants.

Finally, words also have powerful meaning in religion. Great debates and even wars occur over the use and meaning of certain words in religious context. Consider the great differences in thought that occur simply with the mention of the words God, Allah and Buddha. The same can be said for politics. You will get strikingly different responses from everyday ordinary folks with just the simple mention of Republican, Democrat or Tea Party.

Words have forever changed our lives. They change our perspective, buying habits, moods and even how we use technology. Perhaps they help you find a friend, a product, a service, a job, a spouse, get a recommendation or even save your life.

Source: http://www.askingsmarterquestions.com/words-have-the-power-to-change-our-lives/

The Power of Words

Once you have spoken words, they are no longer yours. Other people will translate them, evaluate them, and measure them. Choose your words, make them appropriate for the situation, and be aware of the power of words. Poorly chosen words or speech used for personal, hubris, or evil can impact self-esteem, destroy morale, kill enthusiasm, inflame bias, incite hatred, lower expectations, hold people back, and even make people physically or mentally ill. Inappropriate words can make work and home toxic, abusive environments. There are many empirical studies showing that people who live and/or work in toxic environments suffer more colds, more cases of flu, more heart attacks, more depression, more of almost all chronic disorders, physical and emotional, than people who report living and/or working in happy, enjoyable, caring environments.

The old parental advice, “Sticks and stones can break your bones, but words can never hurt you,” was simply bad advice. However, well-chosen words or speech for the benefit of good or hope for others can motivate or inspire others to greater feats and deeds. They can offer hope; create vision; impact thinking beliefs and behavior of others; and alter results of strategy, plans, objectives, and people’s lives.

Peggy Noonan, the national syndicated columnist, knows a thing or two about words and how they impact us. She wrote recently about the advice Clare Boothe Luce once gave the newly inaugurated U.S. President John F. Kennedy. Ms. Luce was truly a remarkable woman. Her career spanned seven decades and nearly as many professional interests—journalism, politics, theatre, diplomacy, and intelligence.

According to Ms. Noonan, the sentence idea comes from a story Clare Boothe Luce told about a conversation she had in 1962 in the White House with her old friend John F. Kennedy. She said she told him that “a great man is one sentence.” His leadership can be so well summed up in a single sentence that you don’t have to hear his name to know who’s being talked about. “He preserved the union and freed the slaves” or “He lifted us out of a great depression and helped to win a World War.” You didn’t have to be told “Lincoln” or “FDR.”

She wondered what Kennedy’s sentence would be. She was telling him to concentrate, to know the great themes and demands of his time, and focus on them. It was good advice. History has imperatives, and sometimes they are clear. Sometimes they are met, and sometimes not. When they’re clear and met, you get quite a sentence (Wall Street Journal 2009).

Let’s look at a more contemporary example: the historic 2012 presidential debates. These debates may have more significance than previous ones because of the words chosen by the candidates, their rhythm, and their physical, nonverbal cues. A big part of communicating successfully depends on how well we negotiate the paradox of how the vast majority of human communication is conducted.

We know that more than 97% of human communication involves nonverbal cues (body language). To have a successful presentation, speech, or presidential debate performance, we must compose a sophisticated but seamless message, uniting our words in the proper rhythm, and use the corresponding nonverbal cues. If the words chosen don’t match the nonverbal cues or vice versa, the audience will be confused and the message will be diminished or, worse, ignored.

In the world of movies, theater, art, and entertainment, words have a dramatic impact. In a recent Wall Street Journal edition, a special report entitled “What’s In a Name?” discussed a number of box office successes that might have had a different result if their original titles had not been changed. For example, the Bogart classic Casablanca had an original title of Everybody Comes to Ricks. The Julia Roberts/Richard Gere blockbuster Pretty Woman had an original title of $3,000. The successful G.I. Jane was supposed to be released as In Defense of Honor. The world might not have ever remembered Diane Keaton and Woody Allen in Anhedonia, which was fortunately changed to Annie Hall (Wall Street Journal 2012).

Words have the power to affect both the physical and emotional health of people to whom we speak, for better or for worse. Words used to influence are inspiring, uplifting, and challenging. They encourage, motivate, and persuade; they can be visionary; they can change people’s lives for the better. Verbal communication is a powerful human instrument, and we must learn to use it properly. We need to not only learn to think about speaking in new ways, but also learn to think about language and human nature, psychology, and sociology.

Throughout history, there have been many examples of memorable quotes to demonstrate how what is said is just as important as how it was said. For example, when Lyndon B. Johnson was stumping for political office, he was debating an opponent and was asked the difference between himself and the opposing candidate. He famously replied, “He matriculated and I never matriculated.”

Some of the most famous speeches made by Abraham Lincoln are memorable not just for the message, but also for the fact that he condensed an enormous amount of information into them. It was not only the power of his words, but also his cadence that made the impact of the speeches more powerful. His second inaugural speech was only 700 words and the Gettysburg Address was just under three minutes.

The power of words can actually harm others. Power verbs express an action that is to be taken or that has been taken. When used correctly, a powerful verb has the power to impact your life whether you are going into battle, running for president, or simply interviewing for a job. Researchers have observed that when students are given standardized tests and told the tests are “intelligence exams,” the average scores are from 10% to 20% lower than when the same exam is given to similar students and told it is “just an exam.”

We know that words create impressions, ideas, images, concepts, and facsimiles. Therefore, the words that we hear and read influence how we think and consequently how we behave. This means there is a correlation between the words we select and use and the results that occur.

Using powerful verbal imagery helps people to imagine vivid images and allows people to figuratively and literally see concepts being mentioned. This was first discovered in the early twentieth century and was initially known as the Perky effect and later called visual simulation. Individuals can project abstract thoughts. Almost everyone does this from time to time, but we refer to it as daydreaming. When a person daydreams, he is completely awake and his eyes are wide open, yet he imagines being somewhere else, doing something else, seeing smoothly, and doing something else.

Visual simulation impacts what people hear and how fast they respond. A cognitive psychologist, Rolf Zwann, has done a lot of research on how people describe objects and shapes to which they are exposed. The experiment includes just showing people visuals, asking for responses, and providing audio prompts before the visual stimulation. The results indicated people respond faster if they are given visual and aural stimulation before being asked to see the shapes. (Bergen 2012, 95). Many studies have confirmed that people construct visual simulations of objects they hear or read about.

People construct shape and orientation simulation. Studies show that when people listened, they more often looked at the set of objects that fit with the meaning of the verb, even before they heard the name of the relevant object. People make predictions about what the rest of the sentence will contain as soon as words that they have already heard start to constrain what could reasonably follow. People start to cobble their understanding of the sentence incrementally (Bergen 2012, 125).

Grammar helps get the visual simulation going by pulling together all the pieces contributed by the words in the correct configuration. People will more easily and clearly understand and comprehend your meaning if you have structured your sentence correctly.

Source:

http://www.ftpress.com/articles/article.aspx?p=2085691&seqNum=3

Understand the Power of Words

Do you remember when you were taught the famous comeback as a kid «sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me»? We all know how far from the truth that saying is. We are all aware of the enormous power in the meaning of the spoken word and what it means to the person who is on the receiving end. I’m sure you have been the recipient of words of wisdom, words of encouragement, or words of praise. On the other hand we have all experienced condescending words, words that hurt, words that destroyed our spirit, or words that have made us angry.

It is critical that your spoken word is carefully chosen in order to ensure success in all aspects of your life. Words influence your thinking and reinforce concepts within the psyche. The psychological association with the words you speak can affect the outcome of your goals and at what level you achieve. Words that are badly chosen can slaughter your passion, lower your sense of worth, and sabotage your level of enthusiasm. This can retard your progress and produce anemic results. Words that are well chosen can stimulate the psyche, rekindle enthusiasm, generate more insight and vision, increase your expectations, and produce greater outcomes.

The spoken word you choose creates an impression of you and the image you want to portray. If you want to be perceived in a certain way, the words you choose can help you or hurt you. If you want to make and keep friends your spoken word can make it happen. If you want to influence others, choose carefully your words. If you want to drive them away, don’t.

Let us examine the power of words and the words we choose. You know how your words affect others; you can analyze the feedback you get. If you truly want to succeed and be a winner, pay special attention to the words that flow from your mouth. Use it to work for you not against you. Begin today to pay close attention to your spoken word, you will be amazed the power that lies within.

When Words Do Damage

«Handle them carefully, for words have more power than atom bombs.» -Pearl Strachan

If not carefully chosen, our spoken word can wound others. These wounds can stay with someone for years to follow and affect them in ways we could never imagine. The power of the spoken word is so great that not only can we destroy someone but our words can cause us to self-destruct as well.

Words can be used to slander, to lie, or to destroy the reputation of someone. When one does such things they seldom stop to think of the negative psychological impressions that are implanted into their psyche. After a while it can become almost impossible for this person to utter words of encouragement to others. As the words become more contaminated one’s persona can have a tendency to change as well. Before long this individual may not be able to recognize his/her pattern of speech and why others seem to be repelled by it.

Words have the power to ruin relationships. If words are not chosen carefully, relationships can be destroyed, jobs can be lost, or customers can leave. Remember in life we are constantly engaged in relationships with people. Many of these relationships can promote our success in life. It is of utmost importance that our words are chosen wisely to build relationships and not destroy them.

Parents we sometimes wound our children by the words we speak to them. Unable to cognitively understand why their parents speak to them in a derogatory way, they grow up feeling insecure or put down. By not choosing your words carefully, by talking down to your children, or yelling at them, it can cause serious long-lasting emotional and psychological damage to their tender minds.

Examine the words you speak. Are they destructive? Are the spoken well? Do they encourage or put others down? Make a special effort to choose your words more carefully – they are a reflection of what’s on the inside.

Encouraging Words

One of the most powerful things your words can do is to change the world in which you live. By your choice of words you can influence others in positive ways and as a result achieve peace and prosperity in your life. The following are ways to realize that:

  • Pay a genuine compliment or a kind word to someone who crosses your path.
  • Say something nice to build someone’s self-esteem and self-confidence.
  • Your power of words can encourage and motivate someone by saying «you did a good job.»
  • Say words of comfort to someone sad or grieving.
  • Use your words to admit when you were wrong.
  • Use your words to say «I’m sorry»
  • Don’t forget to say «Thank You»
  • Use your words to show appreciation
  • Use your words to show respect for others.
  • Say thing funny to make someone smile and brighten up their day.
  • Use your words to help that special someone in your life feel secure with your love.
  • Use your words to speak to God from your heart to give thanks for the blessing in your life.
  • Use your words to praise your child for their efforts.
  • Say words to let your children know what a gift they are to you.

Start today to make a conscious effort to monitor your words. Make it a point to bring friendly words into every relationship in your life. Learn to respond in ways that disperse good and positive energy into the world around you. Be aware that the power you have in your words can move people to act in helpful or harmful ways. Use it to empower self and others.

Choosing Your Words

According to a study carried out by a professor at Penn State University, it showed that irrespective of age or culture, there are many more words in our vocabulary that expresses negative rather than positive emotions.

Our spoken word could mean the difference between failure and success. In choosing more carefully your words it’s essential to envision the impact you want to have on the people around you. Think about how your plans for achieving your goals can be affected positively or negatively by the words you choose? Let’s look at some common negative words we use and how we can make better choices.

  • Change «Problems» to «Challenges». By looking at the situation as a challenge it is perceived as temporary and solvable.
  • Change «I can’t» to «I can» or «I will».
  • Change «Should Have» to «Could Have». By doing so it removes guilt and shame and puts no one down.
  • Change «Always» to «Often» and «Never» to «Seldom». These two words are exaggerated words and do not convey an accurate meaning. They cause others to become defensive and you seldom get the results you need.
  • Change «Mistakes» to «Life’s Lessons». This removes the guilt and shame and allows us to learn from the past.

Remember, a positively spoken word is a powerful affirmation. It can replace any subconscious cues that have the potential to sabotage your success in life. Become more aware of the negative words you say and try to catch yourself saying them.

The spoken word has the power to play a destructive or constructive role in your life. I hope I have helped to bring more awareness to the power of words that flow from you and the impact it has on your world. Always remember to THINK before you discharge your words.

Source: http://www.audreymarlene-lifecoach.com/spoken-word.html

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How Children Learn Languages

Imagen 1The advantages of beginning early

  • Young children are still using their individual, innate language-learning strategies to acquire their home language and soon find they can also use these strategies to pick up English.
  • Young children have time to learn through play-like activities. They pick up language by taking part in an activity shared with an adult. They firstly make sense of the activity and then get meaning from the adult’s shared language.
  • Young children have more time to fit English into the daily programme. School programmes tend to be informal and children’s minds are not yet cluttered with facts to be stored and tested. They may have little or no homework and are less stressed by having to achieve set standards.
  • Children who have the opportunity to pick up a second language while they are still young appear to use the same innate language-learning strategies throughout life when learning other languages. Picking up third, fourth, or even more languages is easier than picking up a second.
  • Young children who acquire language rather than consciously learn it, as older children and adults have to, are more likely to have better pronunciation and feel for the language and culture. When monolingual children reach puberty and become more self-conscious, their ability to pick up language diminishes and they feel they have to consciously study English through grammar-based programmes. The age at which this change occurs depends greatly on the individual child’s developmental levels as well as the expectations of their society.

Stages in picking up English

Spoken language comes naturally before reading and writing.

Silent period
When babies learn their home language, there is a ‘silent period’, when they look and listen and communicate through facial expression or gestures before they begin to speak. When young children learn English, there may be a similar ‘silent period’ when communication and understanding may take place before they actually speak any English words.

During this time parents should not force children to take part in spoken dialogue by making them repeat words. Spoken dialogues should be one-sided, the adult’s talk providing useful opportunities for the child to pick up language. Where the adult uses parentese (an adjusted form of speech) to facilitate learning, the child may use many of the same strategies they used in learning their home language.

Beginning to talk
After some time, depending on the frequency of English sessions, each child (girls often more quickly than boys) begins to say single words (‘cat’, ‘house’) or ready-made short phrases (‘What’s that?’, ‘It’s my book’, ‘I can’t’, ‘That’s a car’, ‘Time to go home’) in dialogues or as unexpected statements. The child has memorised them, imitating the pronunciation exactly without realising that some may consist of more than one word. This stage continues for some time as they child picks up more language using it as a short cut to dialogue before they are ready to create their own phrases.

Building up English language
Gradually children build up phrases consisting of a single memorised word to which they add words from their vocabulary (‘a dog’, ‘a brown dog’, ‘a brown and black dog’) or a single memorised language to which they add their own input (‘That’s my chair’, ‘Time to play’). Depending on the frequency of exposure to English and the quality of experience, children gradually begin to create whole sentences.

Understanding

Understanding is always greater than speaking and young children’s ability to comprehend should not be underestimated, as they are used to understanding their home language from a variety of context clues. Though they may not understand everything they hear in their home language, children grasp the gist – that is they understand a few important words and decipher the rest using different clues to interpret the meaning. With encouragement they soon transfer their ‘gist’ understanding skills to interpret meaning in English.

Frustration

After the initial novelty of English sessions, some young children become frustrated by their inability to express their thoughts in English. Others want to speak quickly in English as they can in their home language. Frustration can often be overcome by providing children with ‘performance’ pieces like ‘I can count to 12 in English’ or very simple rhymes, which consist of ready-made phrases.

Mistakes

Children should not be told they have made a mistake because any correction immediately demotivates. Mistakes may be part of the process of working out grammar rules of English or they may be a fault in pronunciation. ‘I goed’ soon becomes ‘went’ if the child hears the adult repeat back ‘yes, you went’; or if the adult hears ‘zee bus’ and repeats ‘the bus’. As in learning their home language, if children have an opportunity to hear the adult repeat the same piece of language correctly, they will self-correct in their own time.

Gender differences

Boys’ brains develop differently from girls’ and this affects how boys pick up language and use it. Sometimes mixed classes make little provision for boys, who may be overshadowed by girls’ natural ability to use language. If young boys are to reach their potential, they need some different language experiences with girls and their achievements should not be compared with those of girls.

Language-learning environments

Young children find it more difficult to pick up English if they are not provided with the right type of experiences, accompanied by adult support using ‘parentese’ techniques.

  • Young children need to feel secure and know that there is some obvious reason for using English.
  • Activities need to be linked to some interesting everyday activities about which they already know, eg sharing an English picture book, saying a rhyme in English, having an ‘English’ snack.
  • Activities are accompanied by adult language giving a running commentary about what is going on and dialogues using adjusted parentese language.
  • English sessions are fun and interesting, concentrating on concepts children have already understood in their home language. In this way children are not learning two things, a new concept as well as new language, but merely learning the English to talk about something they already know.
  • Activities are backed up by specific objects, where possible, as this helps understanding and increases general interest.

Reading

Children who can already read in their home language generally want to find out how to read in English. They already know how to decode words in their home language to get meaning from text and, if not helped to decode in English, may transfer their home language-decoding techniques and end up reading English with the home language accent.

Before they can decode English, young children need to know the 26 alphabet letter names and sounds. As English has 26 letters but on average 44 sounds (in standard English), introducing the remaining sounds is better left until children have more experience in using language and reading,

Beginning reading in English goes easily if young children already know the language they are trying to read. Many children work out by themselves how to read in English if they have shared picture books with adults or learned rhymes, as they are likely to have memorised the language. Reading what they know by heart is an important step in learning to read as it gives children opportunities to work out how to decode simple words by themselves. Once children have built up a bank of words they can read, they feel confident and are then ready for a more structured approach.

Parental support

Children need to feel that they are making progress. They need continual encouragement as well as praise for good performance, as any success motivates. Parents are in an ideal position to motivate and so help their children learn, even if they have only basic English themselves and are learning alongside their young children.

By sharing, parents can not only bring their child’s language and activities into family life, but can also influence their young children’s attitudes to language learning and other cultures. It is now generally accepted that most lifelong attitudes are formed by the age of eight or nine.

Source: http://learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org/en/parents/articles/how-young-children-learn-english-another-language

Bilingual babies: Study shows how exposure to a foreign language ignites infants’ learning

For years, scientists and parents alike have touted the benefits of introducing babies to two languages: Bilingual experience has been shown to improve cognitive abilities, especially problem-solving.

And for infants raised in households where two languages are spoken, that bilingual learning happens almost effortlessly. But how can babies in monolingual households develop such skills?

“As researchers studying early language development, we often hear from parents who are eager to provide their child with an opportunity to learn another language, but can’t afford a nanny from a foreign country and don’t speak a foreign language themselves,” said Naja Ferjan Ramirez, a research scientist at the University of Washington Institute of Learning & Brain Sciences (I-LABS).

A new study by I-LABS researchers, published July 17 in Mind, Brain, and Education, is among the first to investigate how babies can learn a second language outside of the home. The researchers sought to answer a fundamental question: Can babies be taught a second language if they don’t get foreign language exposure at home, and if so, what kind of foreign language exposure, and how much, is needed to spark that learning?

The researchers took their query all the way to Europe, developing a play-based, intensive, English-language method and curriculum and implementing it in four public infant-education centers in Madrid, Spain. Sixteen UW undergraduates and recent graduates served as tutors for the study, undergoing two weeks of training at I-LABS to learn the teaching method and curriculum before traveling to Spain. The country’s extensive public education system enabled the researchers to enroll 280 infants and children from families of varying income levels.

Based on years of I-LABS research on infant brain and language development, the method emphasizes social interaction, play, and high quality and quantity of language from the teachers. The approach uses “infant-directed speech” — often called “parentese” — the speech style parents use to talk to their babies, which has simpler grammar, higher and exaggerated pitch, and drawn-out vowels.

“Our research shows that parentese helps babies learn language,” Ferjan Ramirez said.

Babies aged 7 to 33.5 months were given one hour of English sessions a day for 18 weeks, while a control group received the Madrid schools’ standard bilingual program. Both groups of children were tested in Spanish and English at the start and end of the 18 weeks. The children also wore special vests outfitted with lightweight recorders that recorded their English learning. The recordings were analyzed to determine how many English words and phrases each child spoke.

The children who received the UW method showed rapid increases in English comprehension and production, and significantly outperformed the control group peers at all ages on all tests of English. By the end of the 18-week program, the children in the UW program produced an average of 74 English words or phrases per child, per hour; children in the control group produced 13 English words or phrases per child, per hour.

Ferjan Ramirez said the findings show that even babies from monolingual homes can develop bilingual abilities at this early age.

“With the right science-based approach that combines the features known to grow children’s language, it is possible to give very young children the opportunity to start learning a second language, with only one hour of play per day in an early education setting,” she said. “This has big implications for how we think about foreign-language learning.”

Follow-up testing 18 weeks later showed the children had retained what they learned. The English gains were similar between children attending the two schools serving predominantly low-income neighborhoods and the two serving mid-income areas, suggesting that wealth was not a significant factor in the infants’ ability to learn a foreign language. Children’s native language (Spanish) continued to grow as they were learning English, and was not negatively affected by introducing a second language.

“Science indicates that babies’ brains are the best learning machines ever created, and that infants’ learning is time-sensitive. Their brains will never be better at learning a second language than they are between 0 and 3 years of age,” said co-author Patricia Kuhl, co-director of I-LABS and a UW professor of speech and hearing sciences.

The results, Kuhl said, have the potential to transform how early language instruction is approached in the United States and worldwide:

“Parents in Madrid, in the United States and around the world are eager to provide their children with an opportunity to learn a foreign language early. The U.S. census shows that 27 percent of America’s children under the age of 6 are now learning a language other than English at home. While these children are fully capable of learning both their parents’ language and English, they often do not have adequate exposure to English prior to kindergarten entry and as a result, often lag behind their peers once they enter school,” she said.

“I-LABS’ new work shows we can create an early bilingual learning environment for dual-language learners in an educational setting, and in one hour per day, infants can ignite the learning of a second language earlier and much easier than we previously thought. This is doable for everybody,” Kuhl said.

Source: https://www.washington.edu/news/2017/07/17/bilingual-babies-study-shows-how-exposure-to-a-foreign-language-ignites-infants-learning/

How a second language can boost the brain

Even when you’re fluent in two languages, it can be a challenge to switch back and forth smoothly between them. It’s common to mangle a split verb in Spanish, use the wrong preposition in English, or lose sight of the connection between the beginning and end of a long German sentence. So — does mastering a second language hone our multitasking skills or merely muddle us up?

This debate has been pitting linguists and psychologists against one another since the 1920s, when many experts thought that bilingual children were fated to suffer cognitive impairments later in life. But the science has marched on. In the Annual Review of Linguistics, psycholinguist Mark Antoniou of Western Sydney University in Australia outlines how bilingualism — as he defines it, using at least two languages in your daily life — might benefit our brains, especially as we age. He addresses how best to teach languages to children and lays out evidence that multiple-language use on a regular basis may help delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

What are the benefits of bilingualism?

I’m interested in the interaction between language-learning and cognition — the mental processes of the brain. The cognitive benefits of bilingualism can begin from experiences very early in childhood and can persist throughout life.

The first main advantage involves what’s loosely referred to as executive function. This describes skills that allow you to control, direct and manage your attention, as well as your ability to plan. It also helps you ignore irrelevant information and focus on what’s important. Because a bilingual person has mastery of two languages, and the languages are activated automatically and subconsciously, the person is constantly managing the interference of the languages so that she or he doesn’t say the wrong word in the wrong language at the wrong time.

The brain areas responsible for that are also used when you’re trying to complete a task while there are distractions. The task could have nothing to do with language; it could be trying to listen to something in a noisy environment or doing some visual task. The muscle memory developed from using two languages also can apply to different skills.

Where are these benefits expressed in the brain?

Executive functions are the most complex brain functions — the most “human” functions that separate us from apes and other animals. They’re often observed in parts of the brain that are the newest, in evolutionary terms: the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for advanced processing; the bilateral supramarginal gyri, which play a role in linking words and meanings; and the anterior cingulate. Studies show that the bilingual experience alters the structure of these areas.

First of all, we see increases in gray matter volume. The brain is made up of cells called neurons, which each have a cell body and little branching connections called dendrites. Gray matter refers to how many cell bodies and dendrites there are. Bilingual experience makes gray matter denser, so you have more cells. This is an indication of a healthier brain.

Bilingualism also affects white matter, a fatty substance that covers axons, which are the main projections coming out from neurons to connect them to other neurons. White matter allows messages to travel fast and efficiently across networks of nerves and to the brain. Bilingualism promotes the integrity of white matter as you age. It gives you more neurons to play with, and it strengthens or maintains the connections between them so that communication can happen optimally.

Can teaching children two languages delay or confuse their understanding?

These myths about bilingualism date back to studies in the US and the UK from the First and Second World Wars. They were seriously flawed studies involving children from war-torn countries: refugees, orphans and, in some cases, even children who were in concentration camps. Their schooling had been disrupted for years. They may have suffered traumas, and then they participated in these studies with tests measuring their verbal language abilities.

Unsurprisingly, they scored very poorly on these tests. Did the researchers attribute the poor scores to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)? They probably didn’t even know what that was. No, instead they attributed it to the children’s bilingualism.

It wasn’t until the 1960s, when a really important study was published by Elizabeth Peal and Wallace Lambert at McGill University in Montreal, that views started to shift. Their findings showed that not only do bilingual children not have a cognitive delay or mental retardation but that their bilingualism actually has some cognitive benefits.

In addition to executive function, bilingual individuals and children show advantages in metalinguistic awareness. This is the ability to think about language as abstract units and associations. A good example is the letter H, which is associated with the sound “he” in English, with “n” as in “nickel” in Russian, and with the vowel sound “e” in Greek. There’s nothing special about H that makes it have to have a “he” sound; a bilingual person understands this more readily than a monolingual person does.

What do the skeptics argue?

The original findings about bilingual advantages to executive function in the 1960s generated a lot of excitement and media interest. Perhaps the advantages were overstated or misinterpreted. Not every bilingual person is going to have a healthier brain than every monolingual person. We’re talking about general, population-level trends.

We see evidence of bilingual advantages in children, but not always. And as we move into young adults, say, in their 20s, it becomes more difficult to detect these advantages. This makes sense in terms of brain maturation: When you’re a child, your brain is still developing, but when you reach young adulthood, your brain is at its peak, so bilingualism doesn’t give you much extra.

Learning languages as a child is different than doing so later in life, right?

It depends. For a long time, it was thought that the only way to really learn a language was to do it early. It was thought that after adolescence, you couldn’t learn a language perfectly. You were always going to be accented. But we now know that that’s not true, because there are many people who learn languages as adults, and they learn them very well. So this has led us to reexamine what it is about learning a language during childhood that makes it different from adulthood.

Is your brain more ready and more flexible — what we call more “plastic” — when you’re a child, and then it becomes more rigid and fixed as an adult? Or is it that the conditions of language-learning are different when you’re a child, in terms of the amount and type of input you receive, how much slack you’re afforded and how much encouragement others give you? An adult who is working two jobs and going to language classes at 7 o’clock at night has a different type of acquisition than a child constantly receiving input from the mother, grandmother, father or other primary caregiver.

Ultimately, the difference between language-learning in children and adults is probably some combination of the two: plasticity and conditions. There are also individual differences. If you put different people in the same situation, some people will flourish and others will struggle.

Does a bilingual brain age differently than a monolingual one?

We know from studies that starting at the age of about 25, your brain starts to decline, in terms of working memory, efficiency, processing speed, those kinds of things. As you age, these declines become steeper. The argument is that as we get into older age, bilingualism puts the brakes on and makes that decline less steep. Evidence from older adults is the strongest kind supporting a bilingual advantage. (The second strongest comes from children.)

When you look at bilingual individuals who have suffered neurodegeneration, their brains look damaged. From their brain scans, you’d think these people should be more forgetful, or that they shouldn’t be coping as well as they are. But that’s not the case. A bilingual brain can compensate for brain deterioration by using alternative brain networks and connections when original pathways have been destroyed. Researchers call this theory “cognitive compensation” and conclude that it occurs because bilingualism promotes the health of both gray and white matter.

Could learning a language later in life keep Alzheimer’s at bay?

That is a working hypothesis. We’re doing studies where we teach a foreign language to people aged 65 and up with the goal of promoting healthy brain function, even at such a late point in life. What we’re testing is: Can we help people in old age by using language-learning? Does that give you some benefit in terms of a “use it or lose it” approach to brain health?

The initial signs are encouraging. Preliminary data look good. It seems that learning a language in later life results in positive cognitive outcomes.

Because language-learning and use is so complex — arguably the most complex behavior we human beings engage in — it involves many levels. You have speech sounds, syllables, words, grammar, sentences, syntax. There’s so much going on; it really is a workout for a wide brain network. And those areas of the brain overlap with the ones in which aging adult brains show decline or neurological pathological disease. As a result, we argue that learning a second language would be an optimal activity to promote healthy aging.

But not enough studies have been done to settle this once and for all. And we don’t know any of the details. How much language experience is needed? Does it matter which languages you learn? Do you need to achieve a certain level of proficiency? We don’t have answers to these questions.

What advice do you have for parents raising bilingual children?

My advice would be to be encouraging and patient. Bilingual children have a tougher task than those learning only a single language. They’re learning two sets of vocabulary and speech sounds. It can be challenging for those of us living in a country with a dominant language to establish a functional purpose for the second language. A child needs to feel that the language is practical and has a use. Grandparents are great for this, and so is living in a community where there are cultural events or schools where children can be immersed in the second language.

Another concern parents bring up is worrying that their child might be mixing the languages. Don’t worry about what we refer to as “code mixing.” It’s a perfectly normal part of bilingual development. They’re not confused. It’s thought to be a sign of bilingual proficiency or competence to mix up the languages.

What other research are you doing in this area?

I’m interested in trying to understand why sometimes we see a bilingual effect, and other times we don’t. In one article, I proposed that maybe the language pairing matters. If you speak two distant languages, like Mandarin Chinese and English, would that result in similar types of brain changes as speaking two closely related languages, like German and English?

Maybe if the languages are closely related, they’re competing more and you have a harder job of separating them, to avoid using the wrong word at the wrong time. Maybe if they’re more distant, then you can’t rely on prior knowledge from learning the first one to learn the second. In that case, you’re starting from scratch with the second language, and that’s more effortful at the initial learning stages. But once you’ve learned the two languages, perhaps there’s less competition.

Source: https://knowablemagazine.org/article/mind/2018/how-second-language-can-boost-brain

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