Before I was a happy go lucky quilt blogger, I was a Spanish and French teacher. I loved my job and was passionate about the subjects I taught. I believe with all my heart that everyone should study a world language. Let me give you some pragmatic reasons and philosophical rationale to convince you to study a world language.
1. Start to study a world language as early as you can. If you start before puberty, you can avoid an accent and learn it much more easily. You don’t remember learning your native tongue, it would be just like that, well without the baby talk stage.
2. Study a world language in Jr. High or Freshman year if possible. If you love it, you will have more years to pursue it for way less than college tuition costs. If you hate it, you can get through the second year earlier and be on to other subjects you prefer. But you will love it.
3. Study a world language if you plan on attending college. Or if you don’t plan on it. Many colleges will let you in with less than their preferred numbers of years but won’t let you graduate until you have fulfilled them there. I just talked to a lawyer at a wedding who had planned on being a Marine when he was in high school. Senior year, he changed his mind and got into University of Chicago without any language study. He had to do the equivalent of four HS years all there. He signed up for an intensive summer school class and failed. He dropped out of U of C and matriculated in what he felt was an inferior institution. He still wonders how his life might have been had he graduated from U of Chicago. Don’t wonder, study a language!
4. Learn a world language to broaden your view of the world. In English we say take a walk, in Spanish it’s give a walk and in French it’s make a walk. A culture is reflected in its language and its learners gain fabulous insights. We need citizens who understand other cultures and people. Be one of them!
5. Learn a world language and practice it for your brain. For your brain now and in the future, using and thinking in two languages is like aerobics and weight training for your mind. Stay smart for longer and be able to talk about it in more than one language.
6. Use a world language for your work. What if you had all the skills you have right now plus you could do them in another language. It might really help you and I have never found anyone whose life has been diminished by knowing more than one language.
7. Use a world language for your travels. Buy Rosetta Stone, download an app or sign up for lessons for the language of the country you plan to visit and then practice. Your trip will be so much better.
8. Learn another language for the fun of it. You will love being able to say phrases, understand things others say and have new insights into your own language. You’ll laugh and smile in two languages.
As classes start this fall and you plan your educational goals I urge you to consider all the terrific benefits that are yours when you study a world language. I had both of my own girls start their language in Junior High and it’s one of the few things they never complained about. Score one for Mom and for you too!
Here’s a start – to sew in Spanish is coser and in French coudre. See, you’ve started already.
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Is this my only post about what children should learn? No, I think they should sew also and you can read why right here.