Living in the USA (in certain regions), it is sometimes easy to forget that NOT EVERYONE speaks English, or is comfortable with English as a foreign language.Even hanging out on Twitter, the bloggersphere or other social media platforms, it can be easy to become complacent and forget or just assume that everyone speaks English.
We speak of global network, conversations across timezones and borders, global collaboration and global amplification, but what we truly mean is a global “English speaking” network, conversations across timezones and borders of “English speakers”, global collaboration among “English speaking” partners and global amplification within the “English speaking” world.
I recently blogged about Literacy: Language Competence Beyond Our Comfort Zone to bring awareness of the possibility to listen in on conversations of languages other than your own by taking the extra step of using online translators for example.
In the past I have been thrilled when my work, which I license under Creative Commons, inspired other multilinguals to build upon my work by translating it into another language in order to make the content easier accessible to speakers of languages other than English.
It’s All About Sharing and Collaborating, a post I wrote about a Russian educator who had translated material from Langwitches into his language in order to SHARE the content with his colleagues who spoke no English. Alec Couros, told the Amazing Story of Openness and his diagram of the Networked Teacher as it has been translated into many languages now. It am tremendously honored, when my work gets AMPLIFIED into other languages, reaching educators, I would not have reached otherwise. Dico Krommenhoek contacted me a few days ago via Twitter. I was thrilled to give permission, without hesitation, when he asked to translate the iPad App Evaluation checklist into Dutch. It gives me a sense of COLLABORATION across time, space and language, when I can “teach” via my work and materials without ever speaking the same language or meeting these teachers face to face. This is a beauty of CREATIVE COMMONS and an amazing story of openness (as Alec Couros puts it).Read more at: http://langwitches.org/blog/2013/02/10/further-amplification-other-languages/ | Langwitches Blog
I believe this is important to truly work on global collaboration and engage in global conversation. We should not underestimate the relationship between creative commons work, multilinguals and their willingness to contribute their time and energy to amplify content and conversation to a whole new world of other-language speakers.
I am thrilled to be able to add another chapter in [language] amplification via collaboration when Monica Maramotti contacted me via this blog to ask permission to translate my infographic about Blogging in the Classroom into Italian.
Thank you Monica for the new Infographic below which will hopefully inspire more Italian speaking educators to take the plunge of blogging with their students.
I recently was asked to do a workshop on integrating technology in the classroom here in Quito, Ecuador. As I was preparing for this workshop, I realized how much there was out there for me to share… in English! And when I was looking for the same information in Spanish, it was either brief or outdated. I was wondering about how much information was out there in other languages that we didn’t know about because it wasn’t in English. Who is willing to help out with translating information so we can have a GLOBAL perspective and GLOBAL ideas on how to change education.
I think this is a really good conversation to have. The more I delve into the concept of “connected education” the more I get excited about the possibilities. However, that being said, even in that image I construct in my mind, I am thinking of conversation and collaboration opportunities in English. I suppose that’s my own fault for imagining a world where land or distance boundaries aren’t an issue, but language isn’t even something I’m considering when I imagine implementation. I can see now how collaboration via text translators could be made possible but I am left with the question of initial conversation. It is one thing to post a product and have global contributors respond, edit, and improve. However it’s another thing entirely to collaborate and create in real time WITH other people. That’s true collaboration. In that sense and with that scope, how do we cross the language barrier to establish these relationships if language is still an obstacle? Where do we start? Or am I just getting ahead of myself?
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