VIEWS: 6 PAGES: 2 CATEGORY: Languages POSTED ON: 9/10/2013
It seems absurd to have your kids go to a school where they are taught almost entirely in a foreign language, but more and more parents are doing it.
Language Immersion Programs It seems absurd to have your kids go to a school where they are taught almost entirely in a foreign language, but more and more parents are doing it. The question is why? With all of the information they have to process why add one more barrier? While it may seem like an information overload, the way that some of these preschools, kindergartens, and grade schools are set up can actually lead to better results. With all of the immigrants moving out to Long Island and other parts of the country this offers opportunities for their children to maintain their mother tongue. Schools are set up so that children actually learn how to read and write in the immersion language first. They are completely immersed in the language and then as they get older it starts to even out to half and half of English and the other language. If you think about it, because we everyday life is all in English here in America, it makes sense that they teach only in the other language. This makes it so the student learns English naturally in their own environment. It is a natural way of making home a school. Start Learning Early Many studies have proven that learning a language before the sixth grade comes a lot easier than learning in later years. The benefits of having a language behind your belt while you’re young are obvious but some of the learning advantages are not. Learning another language actually gives a child another paradigm to view life on. This only enhances his or her learning and helps them outperform other students who just learn English in school. Actually many of these students even outperform other students on standardized test results. There are often several concerns that parents bring up when they talk about language immersion programs. One of these is the fact that their children could run into a lot more frustrations as things might not come very easy for them. So how do teachers help these students? Many teachers are able to address the needs of students by using visual illustrations and give students clues. This is a way of building communication bridges and helping them build confidence in their language abilities. So what about parents who don’t speak the immersion language themselves? There have been thousands of students in the situation where they come home with homework that is in a language that parents can’t decipher. These students are able to succeed because their parents continue to teach the same subjects but in English. They are able to learn how to switch over quickly. Successful immersion students come from diverse backgrounds and this is one way to offer your children more diversity in their lives. As they learn about other cultures by actually learning a language they will begin to appreciate others in a much more substantial way. Parents that support these programs find themselves gaining this self-same appreciation as well. Whether you are in California or Long Island there are immersion programs for your students and starting them as young as in preschool can be very beneficial. Photo Credit: http://b.vimeocdn.com/, http://www.adoptionstogether.org/, http://www.blogcdn.com/
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