Encourage your child to learn a third language : 6to16

Encourage your child to learn a third language

Rajkumari Tankha
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Have you ever thought why most schools have added the learning of a third language in the curriculum of class 6? I am sure as parent you find it not only tedious but also an unnecessary burden on the minds of kids. But it’s not. Studies over the years have shown that learning an additional language increases the chances of your child’s success when he/she grows up. Not only this, it will certainly be far better if there are multiple languages spoken at home too.
Children are quick learners, and picking up different languages comes very easy to them, in fact, much easier than an adult. So, parents don’t worry about your child having to learn different words in different languages. Actually, you should thank the schools for giving an opportunity to your child to learn an extra language with no additional cost to your pocket.
In fact, in homes where parents have different native languages, both the languages should be spoken at home so that the kids develop skills in both

Excellence in academics
Research has shown brains of kids who start learning another language work harder than those who don’t learn an additional language. The mental conflict arising out of two language systems keeps their brain active. This in turn strengthens their brains’ cognitive muscles, and helps them excel academically. Isn’t this what that is needed for success?

Problem solving capabilities
Since their cognitive muscles are strong, they are better at solving problems. Bilingual kids outshine their peers in mentally demanding tasks like making their own study time table, resolving an issue at hand or simply focusing to what is being said in the class

Social abilities
Since kids in bilingual environments are taught about considering things from the other person’s perspective (like whether the other person knows the language they are speaking etc), it makes them adapt to different social environments better. And in later life, they adjust well to changes in surroundings.

Vocabulary skills
Since they learn more languages, they have stronger vocabulary, which also helps them excel not only academically but socially as well.

Multi-tasking and holding specific attention
Studies have shown that bilingual kids are better able to switch between tasks faster as compared to other children who learn only one language. Also bilingual kids develop specific attention skills quite fast which helps them remain focused on the subject at hand and ignore distractions.

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