The Benefits of Foreign Language Teaching In Primary Schools
In the past, there has been a great effort to include foreign language teaching in schools. This was especially true for primary schools due to the fact that learning skills and languages at an early age has been proven to show a great deal of advantages for the child. However, there may be some that are skeptic about the benefits of foreign language teaching. Even if that is the case, we still cannot deny the many benefits of teaching foreign languages in schools as early as possible.
What could be the benefits of foreign language teaching in schools? Having this program in an educational institution helps to support and promote literacy. Children at a very young age are given the chance to be aware and get accustomed to new sounds and unfamiliar words. The child, once familiar with the language, may experiment with the sounds and the words. He or she can find joy in discovering the meanings and pronunciations of certain words, including the similarities and differences with the mother language. Foreign language teaching helps the child to build confidence in the use of foreign languages. Children exposed to foreign language teaching can use language creatively to people around them. They can even make a comparison of the foreign language with their native language, encouraging them to reflect on how a language works.
Learning a foreign language opens a whole new world. Learning is now not only limited to the school curriculum. Instead, a child can now further his or her reading skills, writing skills, and most importantly, the speaking skills. When a child learns a new language, he or she can now connect it to other areas or fields of education. For instance, in Math subjects, the child now knows the names of the numbers and math symbols or characters in a foreign language. He or she can now develop and improve knowledge in both subjects by doing simple to complicated mathematical functions. Another example is the improvement of knowledge in geography. The child can now have a sense of pride that he or she can speak the language of a certain country other than his or her own.
Foreign language teaching also benefits children as they are given the opportunity to broaden their knowledge about a country and its culture. Through learning a foreign language, a child can learn another culture that is similar or totally different from his or her own. For instance, an Asian student may realize the differences of the western and the eastern culture when he or she studies the English language. The language learner is now exposed to the different cultures, beliefs, and practices of the other country. Through this exposure, they develop acceptance, tolerance, and understanding of the other country.s culture. This is very beneficial since the foreign language learner will be made aware of his or her own place in the world. This will help reduce instances of prejudice as the young children are made aware of the differences both in language and culture.