The American Educational Research Association (AERA) annual meeting is always an interesting conference for Multilingual Matters. Since we are a specialist publisher, our interest group within the ranks of the huge number of attendees is always a small but committed one. This year’s AERA in Vancouver proved no exception and it was a delight to have so many interesting, in-depth conversations with truly committed researchers. Even more excitingly, we had a number of mainstream educators who would not normally come across our books, pick up a book like Richard Barwell’s Multilingualism in the Mathematics Classrooms and say “I’ve been looking for something just like that!”.
I’ve always felt that part of our reason for being at AERA is to fly the flag for multilingualism and positive models of bilingual and multilingual education, and given the variety of people we saw and responses we had, I feel a job was well done.
It’s hard to know what to highlight from Vancouver itself, it’s a city full of great food and wonderful people. Close to nature, it’s equally easy to get into the mountains or onto the ocean. Among my favourites were a spectacular Chinese meal, (thanks Ena!), a seaplane trip into the mountains with our friends Rebecca and Charlie from Caslon, and watching the Canucks’ first game in the Stanley cup play-offs.
All in all, AERA in Vancouver rounded off a very successful and productive spring conference season for us, and we can’t wait for next year!