An immigrant publishes a book to help Portuguese-speaking children in Luxembourg

Cynthia Ertel’s book “O Papagaio Imigrante” was created to help children, descendants of immigrants from the countries of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries, achieve great academic success.

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25.10.2021

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Children’s literature

Lusa

Cynthia Ertel’s book “O Papagaio Imigrante” was created to help children, descendants of immigrants from the countries of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries, achieve great academic success.

Cynthia Ertel, a Brazilian immigrant who has lived in Luxembourg since 2012, released a children’s book this month to help Portuguese-speaking children succeed at school in the country.

The book “O Papagaio Imigrante” was created to help children of immigrant origin from the countries of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP) achieve great academic success by being able to learn German “in a more playful way”, which is the language in which they learn to read and write. , Cynthia Ertel explained to Luce.


Covey the Little Coronavirus is a children’s book that explains COVID-19 to toddlers in Portuguese.


The author received a doctorate from the University of Luxembourg in the field of educational psychology of immigrant children, namely the language difficulties of Portuguese children in Luxembourg education.

For four years he had direct contact with these children, descendants of Portuguese, Brazilians and Cape Verdeans, and realized that the language was difficult because it was the third language they learned: Portuguese was familiar, Luxembourgish was everyday language, and German – German. school, and because the children did not “practice the language with their families.”

The book contains illustrations by the Brazilian Agnes Antonello.

The book contains illustrations by the Brazilian Agnes Antonello.

Photo: DR

When he completed his PhD, he went to work at the “maison relais” (ATL) and found that children of Portuguese descent were generally less motivated by school. The author told Lusa that she has always been writing, but the pandemic forced her to start this “bilingual book” project. The book is also available in Portugal and has its own website.

The story of the book is based on a parrot who leaves Brazil with his girlfriend, the macaw, due to the discontent he feels in the country. According to the author, this is a critique of the current situation in her home country, from deforestation to rising prices.

As of January 2021, Luxembourg has 94,335 Portuguese, 2,604 Brazilians, 2,557 Cape Verdeans, 394 Guineans, 62 Angolans, 30 Sao Tomeans and 05 Mozambicans, according to Luxembourg’s Statec Institute of Statistics.


Even though he was born in Luxembourg, my son always says “I’m Brazilian and German” and never says “I’m Luxembourger”. But when we are in Brazil, he asks to return home to Luxembourg. I have been living here for six years, but I still feel like an immigrant. Why can’t I call Luxembourg my home?


Some 5,319 Brazilians have already acquired Luxembourgish citizenship, as they are descended from Luxembourgish immigrants in Brazil.

Cynthia Ertel explained to Luza that a second wave of Brazilian immigration was starting in Luxembourg. The first were people who left Brazil for Portugal and then for Luxembourg. The second wave is for Brazilians who go directly to the Grand Duchy.

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