The tides have changed; more youngsters are aspiring to study abroad and travel the globe than ever before. More importantly, parents and teachers have opened up to the idea of learning and embracing other cultures and the fresh perspective and self-fulfilment it brings to their children’s life. This should primarily start from school —it should encourage kids to take up at least one foreign language course and learn the language for life.
Kids who grow up learning a foreign language from a tender age—some may even start at the age of 3— benefit greatly. Children, undoubtedly, can learn a foreign language at great pace. They can not only communicate the language perfectly fine, but without an accent. Will learning a foreign language really help your child? Here are the Y’s:
Want your child to gain complete mastery of any foreign language with better fluency? No better time to make him learn a foreign language than at school. Studies prove that between ages 8 and 12, your child not only loses its natural ability to hear and reproduce foreign sounds, but learning or acquisition of new skills can be little slower.
Reserve it for college, and that can be too late…nevertheless, better late than never when it comes to learning things. Children are often referred to as ‘sponges’ for their ’lightning’ learning rate, and this is in no way different from how they learn a foreign language. Their brains are fresh, receptive, creative and open; fluency comes more naturally and easily, minus the accent.
Improves cognitive abilities:
Studies, time and again, have proved that learning a foreign language can enhance a child’s cognitive abilities, besides linguistic abilities. Children tend to develop the concept of “object permanence” in the earlier stages of learning. Some of the other advantages include improved memory & problem solving skills, improved critical thinking abilities, enhanced creativity & flexibility of mind and better multi-tasking abilities.
Better Academic Performance:
Children who learn a foreign language or two are known to show excellent academic performance, can do math better and tend to crack admissions tests such as the GMAT, GRE, TOEFL, GMAT, IELTS, MCAT, SAT , ACT, NEET, etc better. This is mainly due to the benefits stated above. Also, it is widely believed that learning a foreign language can kill English language proficiency, but conversely, it tends to enhance and improve it!
Learning a foreign language or two opens up the gates to learn and appreciate world cultures and enables one to become a ‘global’ citizen. Bilingual (or trilingual) individuals climb up the tough corporate ladder fast, develop better understanding of offshore client’s needs and in general, greater appreciation for humanity and culture— an enriching experience for sure.
It goes without saying that most world leaders and eminent historical personalities are either bilingual or trilingual; they were able to change the world with their gift of gab. Want your child to emulate them and change the world? Well, we suppose you already know the answer to it.