Highest Rated Comments

UniversityofBath214 karma

Hi - I'm so glad this has been brought up. That is absolute nonsense! Infants from a few weeks to months old can distinguish between two languages and can begin to learn both languages. newborn infants can tell the difference between their mothers language and "foreign" languages! So please - everyone - do not listen to even doctors or professionals that tell you to limit a child's input to a single language, even if they do have difficulties learning language.

There is no real limit, but children do need to get sufficient input in each language they are learning. It really very much depends no the environment and how it's structured which determines how many languages a child can acquire.

No worries - you don't need questions about language disorders. it is probably a good thing you haven't had to consider this, but do keep this in mind for other children or to mention to other parents if you notice there might be an issue. language disorders are far too easily overlooked, unfortunately.

UniversityofBath129 karma

Thanks so much for your question and your kind words! In fact, a large majority of people in Hong Kong can speak two to three languages (Cantonese, English, and Putonghua/Mandarin). But the use of these languages are rather (conventionally) confined to certain communication contexts. For example, the use of English is common in business, education, and governmental communication. But in daily life, we speak Cantonese instead. Due to the rather conventional use of languages (linked to their functions), knowing different languages do not seem to help increase the willingness to communicate. A side note is that English is perceived as high/formal language while Cantonese is seen as low/informal language. The high/low distinction would generate some kinds of power distance. So, it needs further investigation into how students' willingness to communicate can be enhanced in the context of Hong Kong.

UniversityofBath105 karma

No! They are very different from you see in the movie ;-)

UniversityofBath90 karma

Sadly not - we can still acquire language, but not with the same ease or proficiency as young children. We learn in qualitatively different ways and it is much more of an effort to learn languages later in life.

UniversityofBath90 karma

Yes! The good news is that people and governments *are* starting to take action on climate change (check out some nice examples here: https://www.count-us-in.org/) and that taking action on climate change has lots of other benefits, like being healthier, (often) cheaper, and more sociable. Being low-carbon is starting to be more normal and more attractive... though there's definitely a way to go. I'm optimistic we'll avoid the worst impacts, and hopefully will have better, happier lives as a result.