May 20, 2020

Book review: The Hidden Messages in Water by Masaru Emoto

What you know is possible in your heart is possible. Masaru Emoto

Today, I’m reviewing an amazing book about water. About water? On a language-related blog? Yes! 🙂 The author is a Japanese scientist who, through his research, discovered some fascinating truths about water. The read may inspire you to travel to Japan or to learn Japanese. Also, the presented knowledge may be transferred to our daily life and help us achieve better results in language learning.

What did the Japanese researcher discover through his research? Through analysing tap water and its crystals (e.g. from Tokyo or London) the pictures showed deformed crystals or didn’t have any crystals at all. Whereas when he analysed water from springs or lakes, there were beautifully formed crystals. But, it’s more than that. He wrote words on water, e.g. love & gratitude or thank you and then the water formed beautiful and complete crystals. After writing stupid and fool, the crystals were dark, incomplete or not formed at all. But the worst results with the crystals were when the water was ignored (interesting, huh?).

What can we take it from these amazing discoveries? That our words and thoughts have power. Whenever we say ‘I can’t do it’, ‘I’m too old’, ‘I’m a slow learner’, ‘I don’t have any language ability’, regardless of wherever that’s true or not, the said words can become our reality. A good exercise could be to watch what we say about ourselves (whether out loud or in our heads) to see what picture we draw of ourselves and what impact it can have on our language learning or, more broadly, on our lives.

The book talks deeper about the subject of water, its healing powers, its links to the beginnings of life on planet Earth, and the inner power of human beings. The book has many pictures of the water crystals which make the read more real and even more fascinating!

What interesting book have you read recently? Do let me know in the comments below.

Kinga Macalla

May 13, 2020

Book review: Maximize your child bilingual ability by Adam Beck

Read, read, read. William Faulkner

An essential guidebook to children’s bilingualism. It’s a practical handbook for parents wishing to get a grasp of bilingual upbringing, it answers many questions and provides a step-by-step guide to having a bilingual family.

Adam Beck, the author of the book is an American living in Japan who is raising two bilingual children. He is also the founder of the blog Bilingual Monkey and the forum The Bilingual Zoo.

I think the main message I will take from this book is: read aloud daily (adapt reading to your child’s age, tell stories using picture books, use walls to display messages to your children), have a minority-language routine (important!), follow your children’s natural passions in the minority language (what do they like doing /talking about?), talk to your children in the minority language as often as possible (story-telling), listen to and sing songs (e.g. when cycling—this is what we often do!), be firm with your schedule, but play it through the activities (have fun!) and bilingualism is a long-term project (be patient and consistent).

I like how the book is organised, that it has short chapters, which makes the reading easy to follow and allows reading in short spans of time (important when having kids). Each chapter starts with a quotation which I found really inspirational.

To sum up, I think I would mostly recommend the publication to families who wish to raise their kids bilingually but don’t know how to start, what resources to use, or what strategies to follow. For existing bilingual families, it’s an interesting read which reminds us of the importance of regular input in the minority language and which gives some inspirational tips on resources, activities and the day-to-day routine of the bilingual family.

What books on bilingualism do you recommend? Do let me know in the comments below.

Kinga Macalla

May 6, 2020

Travelling corner: Cornish Delight. A Weekend away in South-East Cornwall

Oh Cornwall, it feels so good to be there, even for a weekend. Today, I’m taking you to South-East Cornwall and we’ll stay in Looe and spend the weekend exploring this part of Cornwall (aka visit my favourite places).

Friday afternoon

I would start with some sea-bathing time and my favourite place (not far away from Looe) would be Seaton Beach. The beach doesn’t have beautiful sand (it’s rather greyish), but the sea is usually warm and beautifully sparkles as the sun sets down to the horizon.


I would start the day with a breakfast at Summink Different Café in Downderry. Their menu is rich in good foods, sustainable, often organic and simply delicious. My favourite is their 100 percent cacao soup with coconut milk (oh yes, that’s yummy!). From there, we’ll go to Freathy Beach which is a long stretch of sand with some amazing sea views (quick note that the beach is tiny when there is a high tide). You need to descend to reach the beach, it’s not very steep but may limit the amount of beach games and other necessities you take down with you 🙂


Today we’ll go to Readymoney Cove in Fowey. But, we’ll go by boat from Polruan. Polruan is a picturesque village with some marine-like town houses (and a bit of a steep descent to the quay!). It takes around 10 minutes to get to the other shore by boat, and we’re in Fowey! We then walk another 10 minutes and arrive at this small, yet charming beach (with cold water!) where we can enjoy the views of the sailing yachts and boats. We can then go for a walk to see the ruins of St Catherine’s Castle or relax and enjoy the scrumptious Cornish ice-cream (or both!).

You can read more about my previous travels to this part of Cornwall here and here.

That’s a nice weekend, huh? What was your last weekend in Cornwall like? Do let me know in the comments below.

Kinga Macalla