Did you know there are more benefits to learning a second language than just being able to communicate in a new way? Research shows that children who learn a second language benefit in ways that change their thinking patterns, improves their first language and increases their self perception. Children learning second languages such as Spanish can increase their sense of achievement, enhance their cognitive abilities and even become more creative. Not only will they now have the opportunity to speak with twice as many people in the world and improve cultural understanding, but their options for choosing colleges and career opportunities are also improved. Perhaps the most important reason to learning a second language is that a person becomes more fully developed, more intellectual, and better prepared to be a successful and happy contributing member of this complex society.
Learning Spanish changes a child’s thinking patterns and improves creativity. When children learn to speak a second language they begin to use their brain in new ways allowing them to see problems from different angles. When faced with problems children who learn a second language have more options, can be more creative, and are more likely to be successful solving the problem. Second language learners become skilled at seeing patterns and making connections. Verbs for example are used slightly differently in Spanish than in English. When the learner begins to understand this concept there is a new appreciation and deeper understanding for the first language. Not only will talents be developed in Spanish but new and more accurate ways of using the first language will begin to appear. Students may realize how the roots of two languages are related and come to develop a more profound understanding for words they used previously in perhaps mindless ways. Origins of words and ultimately origins of who we are are just some of the miraculous results of second language learning.
If children already speak English than by learning Spanish the amount of people that can now communicate with is doubled! Clearly this not only expands career and college opportunities but sets a person up for double adventure and learning in life! Going to visit, spend a vacation, live or studying in a foreign country makes most people uncomfortable for many reasons, but usually language is the greatest fear. Knowing the language in a foreign land reduces stress and fearfulness significantly allowing more learning and enjoyment to take place. Learning from experience is the most rewarding and most retained of all! Learning culture is one of the magical results of language learning. Anyone who speaks a second language and has visited another country can tell you that culture is learned through the language. Those that are multilingual often have act differently depending on which language they are speaking and who they are speaking to. It can be effectively argued that you can only learn culture well if you are actively using the language of that culture. So, if you want adventure and learning that will last a lifetime you can help it along by learning Spanish.
While there are many practical and exciting reasons to learn Spanish ultimately it will produce a person that understands themselves and this world at a level unmatched by his peers. Language students often develop into highly confidant better prepared individuals, individuals that are happier, more successful and ready to understand and enjoy life!
by Sra. Seco
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