November 2017

18. Bill Weir Loves Language Teachers — Wishes He had Listened to His

2017-11-30T20:22:00-05:00By |Episodes|

Bill Weir Loves Language Teachers — Wishes He Had Listened to His Bill Weir, travel correspondent and host of CNN Wonder List, has his dream job. He gets to jet all over the world to capture images and weave stories together from what he finds. It’s all perfect, except for one thing — Bill is monolingual. Steve Leveen interviews Bill Weir: “I kick myself…” “I wish I could travel back in time and punch my teenage self in the face for not paying attention. I was one of those horrible language students who didn’t figure I would ever need [...]

August 2017

10. The Joy of Spanish

2018-05-21T12:47:17-04:00By |Episodes|

The Joy of Speaking Spanish Twenty-five percent of American Latinos don’t speak Spanish, because they can’t. The erosion of Spanish and other heritage languages will continue to be make it challenging for the United States to build its international language capital (see Episode 9). On the positive side, an estimated 2.8 million non-Latinos speak Spanish. I aim to be one of them. Martha Gonzalez, Age 16, Grandmother of Mario Bravo For almost 10 years I’ve been studying the language, and while my progress has been embarrassingly slow, I am falling ever more deeply in love [...]

Let’s Talk with One Another

2019-09-06T14:17:42-04:00By |Articles|

In my continuing quest to learn Spanish, I’ve developed a technique I use when we go out to eat. If I suspect that our server may speak Spanish, I’ll ask “¿Habla español?” If he or she says “Sí,” I say, “Estoy aprendiendo. ¿Me puede ayudar?” (“I’m learning. Would you help me?”) Invariably, the answer is “¡Claro! (Of course!)” and then we not only have a conversation in Spanish, but we all have more fun, too. Life is sweeter when you can live it in a second language. But these conversations are short. It’s harder to arrange longer [...]

July 2017

8. American Outliers

2017-12-05T19:42:22-05:00By |Episodes|

American Outliers America has been called the place where languages go to die. But not always. In episode 8 of America the Bilingual we hear the story of two American immigrants and their intrepid sons. What the sons did leaps out when set against the landscape of the more usual American study-abroad experience. Listen on iTunes by clicking here: America the Bilingual by Steve Leveen on iTunes Download past episodes or subscribe to future episodes of America the Bilingual by Steve Leveen for free Listen to this SoundCloud episode below:  America the Bilingual by Steve [...]

June 2017

6. Little Ketchup Girl

2017-12-05T19:15:37-05:00By |Episodes|

Little Ketchup Girl How hard can it be to go up to the counter at McDonald’s and ask for ketchup? The answer might depend on how confident you are in English. Michelle Bazargan was a little girl when bombs began exploding outside her home in Tehran. It was then that her mother decided it was too dangerous to remain. Thus begins the story of one Iranian family and their challenges of becoming American. Sometimes trauma can leave people irreversibly damaged. Other times trauma can leave people irreversibly dedicated to helping others. Listen to episode 6 of [...]

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