Welcome to week fifteen of Multilingual Living’s Language Challenge 101 – we are a bilingual family who is learning a new language over the course of 101 days. If you missed our first few weeks, just click on the Language Challenge 101 button on the very left of this website page and you’ll find everything we have done so far.
This was our last official week of Language Challenge 101. Sniff, sniff.
I had planned on doing a final video diary for you this week but will instead do it next week as a final post. My plan for the final Language Challenge 101 video diary is to do a quick recap of what we did over the course of these past 101 days as well as an overview of my recommendations on what works best for language learning as a family.
So stay tuned for next week’s final video diary for everything you’ll want to know about family language learning!
6 Reasons to Start While We Are Young!
As we know, language learning can happen any time in our lives. So why should we start when we are young?
I believe we should start when we are young because language learning if fun when we are a child! It doesn’t turn into the drudgery that we remember from high school (young children won’t put up with that kind of boring language learning!).
Here are the main reasons why I think language learning works best when we start young:
- Time. Starting language learning when we are young means that we have a lifetime ahead to continue learning. The seeds are sown and all that needs to happen now is continued language exposure and opportunity for use.
- Silly. When we are young, we are willing to play, willing to be silly. We actually enjoy singing silly songs and don’t care how long it takes to learn the words. We love it when others act out the words and we enjoy joining in.
- Mistakes. When we are young, we haven’t yet learned that making mistakes in language learning is embarrassing. We simply accept the fact that we say things wrong sometimes and are continually corrected. We take this all at face value. We don’t yet have a image to protect!
- Hormones. We aren’t yet in high school surging with teenage hormones. We aren’t worried about being cool for a potential girlfriend and we certainly aren’t worried about how a grade in our language class will impact our grade point average. Learning a language often makes us feel small like a child, something we tend to avoid in the heat of our teenage years.
- Fun. When we are young, learning is simply fun. Children are naturally curious so learning a language in an engaging way delights them. It doesn’t take much to make language learning an enjoyable game for young children.
- Parental Motivation. Learning a language when we are young means that our parents are dedicated to what it takes to provide us with opportunities to learn and use languages. It means that our parents see the value of language learning and will ensure that we have what we need to stay motivated and excited by language. When we learn a language as a teenager or an adult it means that we need self-motivation, and this is something that is often hard to come by when we have so many competing activities in our lives.
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