It is well known that children at a young age can better understand and learn languages. Especially children up to the age of 6 are particularly receptive to languages. In most cases in the UK, they only come in contact with foreign language from aged 11, when they are slowly introduced to the Spanish and French languages.
Whether in the first elementary school class or even in a nursery – for many parents, foreign language teaching cannot start fast enough for their child, and indeed, many studies suggest that it can be beneficial if children come into contact with a second language at an early age. Here are some top reasons why your child should learn a foreign language.
A Good Foundation
Learning a new language means we can better understand our mother tongue and even master our grammar more securely. Learning how another language works make us explore the mechanisms of our own language.
Growth Spurt For The Brain
Studies on the effects of bilingualism in children suggest that brain development is stimulated by mastering more than one language, and even building new brain cells!
Learning a new language is a unique sense of achievement – at any age. In children, language acquisition is intuitive and natural, and the ease and enjoyment of the experience can help to increase their self-confidence and willingness to learn.
Improved Academic Performance
Numerous studies from Harvard University confirm that students who have learned a foreign language perform much better in many tests than those who speak only their mother tongue. This is because bilingual children can also process information faster and direct their attention more effectively. Their executive control, the ability to focus on particular aspects and hide others at the same time, seems particularly pronounced.
Better Reading Skills
A study by the University of York in Canada indicates that bilingual students have an advantage in reading through their foreign language skills. This is explained by the fact that they can apply the knowledge and experience from one language to the next and already have more experience in dealing with language. The advantages of bilingualism in childhood are broad, and as a parent, you can start by enrolling your child in a school that has foreign languages as part of their curriculum. Many schools across the UK teach foreign languages such as Akeley Wood School.
Broadening The Horizon
If we can communicate safely in the language of a country when traveling abroad, we are in a position to participate in the culture and everyday life and not just to be in transit.
By acquiring a new language, we can get to know people outside of our environment with whom we would otherwise be unable to speak and build a deep bond with them. Knowledge of foreign languages helps us to get close to other people, their culture, and their stories. We expand our circles to the benefit of our own understanding, knowledge, and opportunities.