Advantages of a Bilingual Childhood
Chris Sawyer | Thursday, April 07, 2016
Children have it much easier than older students when it comes to language learning. Their vocabulary improves at a staggering pace. They also demonstrate better reasoning skills than those who only use one language. What other specific benefits are there to starting as early as possible?
Children and young teenagers need to acquire communication skills rapidly. Fortunately, they have a better ability to record and replicate new sounds than older students. It is more difficult to acquire new vocabulary and improve pronunciation later in life because we lose this plastic ability that children have; to learn without overthinking or criticising.
Children learn the most, and best, through play. Games, activities and songs are not treated as lessons, and are much better retained than conventional instruction. Younger children are also fortunate in having fewer things to remember in comparison to older students; a natural curiosity more free from mental clutter.
Self - expression
Younger children retain their ability to express themselves fearlessly. Evaluation and comparison with other students is a trope which develops during
later teenage years. As languages are primarily learnt by speaking, the courageous child progresses rapidly, without worrying too much about tripping
Learning a language at a young age encourages a child or adolescent to be interested in other cultures, and to forge an open and critical mind. Multilingual children are generally more curious than those who only speak one language, and this allows them to explore further afield; generating a healthy cycle.
It is not necessary to be fully bilingual to reap these benefits; the process of learning is often enough.
OISE offer English courses building on a rich English primary school tradition that allows your child to learn another language in a stimulating and
supportive environment. Our courses are tailored to the ages of 7 upwards and are available all year round at the idyllic Sherbourne Priors, and at our school in the countryside of Taunton throughout the summer months.