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Benefits Of Learning A Foreign Language | KalliKids

What are the benefits of learning a foreign language?

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There are lifelong academic benefits to knowing two languages and transitional benefits gained during the learning of a new language. Studies show that at every level, bilinguals perform better in intellectual tests. Children who study a second language do better at logical reasoning, Mathematics and English verbal tests. They get better exam results and adults who are competent in more than one language do best in both verbal and non-verbal intelligence tests.

As well as having linguistic and cognitive advantages, learning another language will increase your child’s understanding of the world around them. It allows them to look into different cultures and increase their global awareness, which is an important life skill to develop.

The physical benefits of learning a language

In old age bilingual people have less cognitive decline than monolinguals. Early exposure to a second language actually causes more connections to grow in the child's brain and these connections in turn allow for easier learning in both languages. Creativity, flexibility and lateral thinking ability are fostered by exposure to two languages, as well as improved capacity of the brain to multi-task. Quite apart from all this there are obvious social and employment advantages to having access to two cultures.

When is the best time to learn a new language?

The earlier your child starts learning another language the greater the chances of success and the easier the learning process. If a child focuses on a different language at a very young age, they will be able to develop pronunciation skills that are similar to those that speak the language in a native manner. By the age of 15, a child's facial muscles and bones are nearly mature and his muscles lose some of the flexibility needed to make new sounds. As a result, adult students can rarely attain perfect foreign accents, while children absorb native inflections more naturally.

In most European countries learning a new language begins in primary school and it is common for families to be multilingual. Luxembourg and the Netherlands are particularly strong in language teaching. Language learning is viewed as the norm rather than as something difficult or only for gifted children.

UK language teachers bemoan the fact that after five years of secondary school French, most pupils can't speak, read or write the language except in short "phrase-book" sentences. Yet it's possible, especially for young children, to learn a language in six months. Recent government reports seem to have taken this on board to some degree and there is a trend towards encouraging more language learning in primary schools.

Toddler and pre-school language tutors/classes are now more established to help young children get those muscles and brain connections working!

General techniques

Most experts agree that exposure to a language is the key. Whatever your age, you will learn fastest in an atmosphere where everyone speaks the language that you're trying to learn.

But even if you're already an adult, it's never too late. The best way is to spend lots of time in the country where they speak the language you want to learn. If you can't do that, then you have to work on your own exposure through CDs, DVDs and finding native speakers to talk to.

There are lots of ways you can help your child or yourself learn a language.


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Learning another language is not only learning different words for the same things, but learning another way to think about things.

Flora Lewis



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