Lauren Clemens, PhD
I've been an enthusiastic language learner at every stage of my life. I am a heritage German speaker and I studied French in school and through study abroad. As a young adult, I lived and worked in Bosnia-Herzegovina and The Netherlands. During graduate school I started learning Spanish to use as a lingua franca with speakers of the indigenous Mesoamerican languages I research professionally. After graduating from Harvard University with a PhD in theoretical linguistics my family moved to Montreal, eventually settling in upstate New York, where I am now a tenured professor. I have learned new languages naturalistically, in a school setting, in immersion contexts, and through independent study. I have also failed at language learning in ways that help me better understand what it takes to be successful.
My husband is also an avid language learner and when we had children we committed to sharing the gift of bilingualism with them. Ultimately we chose Spanish (by far the weakest language for both of us!) because it made the most sense for where we live. I have experience parenting children in immersion daycare, bilingual preschool, dual language immersion at a public school in New York State, and bilingual private school in Mexico (where we are living for the 2022-2023 academic year). I am regularly in awe of how children (all children!) absorb language, while at the same time routinely surprised by how personality and aptitude affect the way in which our own children respond to new language learning environments. I deeply appreciate the perspective that their individual differences give me.
Supporting parents raising bilingual children allows me to combine my professional expertise, fifteen years of teaching experience, my love for language learning, and experience as a parent of small children. I hope to meet you soon!