Raising your children to be bilingual is a long term investment to their success. Now more than ever, countries are mingling to exchange educational, cultural and economic strategies. It is wise to enable your kids, from a young age, to interact with people from different countries by teaching them more than their birth language.
Spanish is one of the most spoken languages in the world with about 20 countries embracing it as their mother tongue. If you are looking for a second language to teach your kids, Spanish should be a great choice. It is also easy these days since your kids can even learn Spanish online, on Babbel for example.
5 Reasons Why You Should Teach Spanish to Your Children
Your kids will benefit a lot from understanding and speaking more than one language. If you are still wondering why Spanish in particular, here are five reasons that will give you broader ideas:
• It is the second most popular language in the world. Besides English, Spanish is among the six United States official languages. It is also the primary language for Spain and South and Central America.
• With many people interested in learning the language, finding the right and adequate resources has been made easy. Anyone can learn Spanish online, using easy and well-researched methods.
• Teaching your kids Spanish helps them understand and appreciate a different culture. It is a practice that promotes universal unity in the long-run.
• When a child learns Spanish, getting to know other Latin based languages, like Italian and French becomes easy. People who speak Spanish easily understand Latin-based languages even when they are not fluent in their speaking.
• By learning Spanish, your kids will not have a hard time building their social lives if they ever find themselves travelling to different countries. It encourages them to explore the world.
How to Teach Your Kids Spanish
Getting your kids to learn Spanish is not as hard as you might think. Kids have a brain that is still developing; therefore, it is easy for them to learn a new language. Some of the methods you can use to teach your children Spanish include:
• Use of music and translated familiar songs: Music has always been the most natural memorisation technique that ever existed. It is also fun.
• Using games: Kids love playing all the time. Turning chores into games has encouraged kids to be part of the house chores. The same method can help kids to learn Spanish.
• Movies and animations. Films such as Muzzy play a significant role in getting your kids to learn Spanish phrases. It is an excellent idea in getting them to transit from just knowing a few words to mastering how the words are used.
• Hiring a tutor. Not every parent has the skills or the time to make a kid learn a new language. Getting an experienced tutor will take the worry off your plate and give your children a desirable chance of learning Spanish.
Benefits of Learning a Second Language
Encouraging bilingualism is not just about raising smart kids. The benefits go deeper into scientifically proven advantages. For example, a kid who understands more than one language is better positioned to make informed decisions. This is more so in situations where racial concerns are at hand. Raising a kid in a bilingual environment increases their perceptual sensitivity. The child can make a distinction between different languages from a young age. This also increases their cognitive abilities, helping the child score highly in verbal fluency and reading tests. Other benefits also include:
• Fluency in their mother tongues
• Diverse career opportunities
• Enhanced empathy levels
• Cultural sensitivity
• Increased learning curiosity
A child does not have to know all the languages spoken in the world, but with at an adequate knowledge of at least two, they will have a great head start in life. A parent needs to understand their child to choose the best method to introduce an additional language. It does not have to be in a formal setting like in school. Even if the parent does not know the language themselves, they can encourage their children to learn: no guardian ever regrets teaching their children a second language as the benefits are long term and tangible.