What are the benefits of learning a second language?

benefits of learning a second language

Do you remember how easy it was to pick up a new language as a kid?

Learning a second language is not easy after a certain age. However, the younger you are, the easier it is to pick up a second language. After all, do you remember speaking with your friend in her native after a few tries? Children between the age of two to seven have a rapid neural formation. In addition, children who learn a foreign language have cognitive benefits. 

English is the official language of the world. Many believe learning a language other than English has less value. Well, that isn’t true. Learning a second or a third language is never a waste of time. Speaking a second language opens up a whole new world of possibilities for your child. Furthermore, young children can learn the rules of any language. Unfortunately, that ability slowly fades away by adulthood.

The benefits of raising children to speak more than one language are many. Let us find out how:

1. Cognitive benefits

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Learning one or more languages benefits a child’s brain development. It is an excellent way to strengthen those brain muscles. Children who learn two or more languages exhibit greater creativity and mental flexibility. They are capable of multitasking, problem-solving, and planning. The best way to raise smarter children is to help them learn a second language. Particularly when they are young. When a child grasps the essence of a language, it becomes much easier for them to learn other languages.

2. Creates empathy

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Multilingual children have a great feeling of empathy for others. They feel sympathy for others as a result of this. They put themselves in the shoes of another person and think like they do. They can observe things from a different perspective. This contributes to the development of a healthy social understanding. As a result, the person understands how to control their emotions. Furthermore, the child can differentiate his own needs from those of others.

3. Boosts confidence

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Children learn languages more easily because they make learning a fun process. Mastering a language requires a lot of practice. Besides, there is an increased chance of making mistakes when doing so. The fact that they are learning and not shying away from learning makes it interesting. Communicating with people from all walks of life can boost their confidence. Nothing beats conversing in a native tongue with a native speaker. Children who are fluent in a foreign language will greatly benefit in a foreign land.

4. Improves memory

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Learning a language is tough. The more physical exercises you do, the stronger your muscles become. The same is true for the brain. The more you challenge your brain, the more it expands and functions smartly. Bilinguals and those who learn a second language have better memories. They recall names, colors, and other details far better than monolinguals. They can also concentrate better and are far less distracted. Language learners have a natural ability to focus because their brains are stronger.

5. Increases creativity

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While learning a new language, you can be imperfect. The more the mistakes, the better your creativity becomes. Being creative encourages you to be flawed. Creative people often get comfortable after repeated failures. It is okay to fail, and it is okay to make mistakes. You also tend to learn quickly. Language learning influences your level of creativity. Your brain will come up with better ideas. Kids will put together new words, forms sentences, and patterns. This helps to stimulate your brain and increases your creativity. Your enhanced creativity will eventually flow over into other areas of your life. 

6. Improves your first language

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Growing up, one learns to speak one’s mother tongue. It happens in a natural way rather than in a logical way. Many believed that learning two or more languages would confuse kids. But that isn’t the case anymore. Learning another language improves children’s understanding of their native tongue. Children attempt to learn parts of speech from the second language and incorporate them into their native language. They distinguish between languages by comprehending sentence structure, grammar, and vocabulary. This allows them to be more aware and have a deeper connection with one’s own language.

7. Improved academic performance

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Learning one or more languages directly impacts a child’s academic performance. It stimulates the brain and aids in the academic success of children. Bilingual children show faster progress in learning to read than monolinguals. They score higher and perform better on tests. Additionally, the children improve as readers, communicators, and writers. Bilingual children have a better chance of learning more languages. This helps them in their careers and those searching for people who speak many languages.

8. Helps in preventing cognitive decline

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Children who learn a second language may delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease by 4.5 years. They may also delay the onset of other mental diseases, such as dementia. Speaking more than one language is said to boost their cognitive reserve. This helps increase the executive function in the brain by increasing blood flow. It also stimulates neuron activity by using it more effectively. This could make up for the loss of damaged brain areas.

9. Helps connect with more people

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A second language allows you to communicate with people from all over the world. It helps you to connect in a faster and more meaningful way. As a result, you can find out more about the world around you and be a better person. 

10. Out of the box thinking

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Bilingual children exhibit greater creativity and better problem-solving skills. With a healthy mind comes healthy ideas. Besides, a second language enables the learner to think outside the box. The more they think, the better ideas they come up with. Thereby opening up new perspectives. As a result, they can approach problems from many angles.

Take-away:

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Children who study a second language have several advantages. Such as better conversation skills, cognitive development, and cultural awareness. The more time a child spends learning a foreign language, the more fluent he can become. You can begin to teach your child a second language at any age, so get started today!

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