Foreign Languages- should they be taught? Or Not?

Let me start off by saying I’m partially bias. I am bilingual in English and French and Matt is Trilingual in English, French and Manderin. Foreign languages are not required by homeschoolers in NY, but yes you will see it on our IHIP if you’ve read that article.

However Foreign languages are required in Public, Private and Charter schools statewide. Less so in elementary school but absolutely by highschool a child will have to take foreign language course. It is also a college requirement should your child work towards their degree.

I will let you make you your own decisions but not only from the research I’ve done, but from our own experiences, I can attest to majority of these beneficial points.

– Between the ages 2-12, kids it easier to absorb languages. That’s why they say it’s harder to learn a second language when your older.

– Improves knowledge of first language, or English. Many of our words use Latin as a base. Is it necessary to learn Latin specifically? No

– Kids have a bigger vocabulary. When your child is young and developing, they focus on how many words is your child speaking. While yes if you start from a younger age, your child may seem behind in the amount of words, they actually have double since they know 2 (or more) languages.

– they develop an ear for languages. Matthew is so good at spotting which language is spoken. As can I.

– It improves memory

– increases brain activity in certain parts of the brain more than other subjects

– better at multitasking

– better attention span

– increases empathy and inclusion

– they have better cognitive abilities

– increased perceptual sensitivity

– better at making decisions and problem solving

– do better academically and on tests

– gives the advantage for college requirements as I mentioned earlier

– gives a competitive edge in career.

Will your child be fine without it? Yes. There is so much technology to help should you travel or need interpreting but why not immerse yourself and learn to be inclusive. Your not only helping your child but those around you.

There was an article that asked that if there is so many benefits, why can no one determine which language is best to study? Well that’s because there are so many. Mandarin is the most spoken amongst people. Spanish and French are second when it comes to countries. English (if your a non native speaker) is even more popular with having tourism. When your capable of learning a second language, it’s easier learning more.

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