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Second language teaching and its benefits

What is a possible outcome when you learn a second language? Many studies reveal the impact of learning a second language is indispensable in this global economy.

Perhaps, the students in your class depend on learning a second language for career purposes. More importantly, schools are offering foreign language classes to adapt to the rapid rise of a competitive economy.

Whether it is Spanish or another second language, learning a second language is essential. Second language teaching offers a realm of opportunities for students of all levels to improve cognitive development, boost brain activity, and develop language acquisition skills.

Second language teaching in cognitive development

Remarkably, second language teaching improves cognitive development in children at a very young age. In fact, the common belief language delays occur because of learning a second language is inaccurate.

However, studies prove that learning a second language improves cognitive development in children. The learning process is vital for children to acquire a language, especially another language.

Research report the best way to teach children a second language is through immersion. Keep in mind a comprehensive curriculum is crucial to the success of a dual language immersion program.

Furthermore, second language teaching nurtures the ability for children to recognize words in different ways. For instance, children learn word identification through prior knowledge.

When a child sees the word red, then the child associates the color with all the things red in his or her environment. If a child reads the word apple when a child first experienced an apple, then the child will recognize apple, red, manzana, and rojo.

Amazingly, the teaching of a second language builds the strength in brain activity in children.

second language teaching

Brain activity impact of second language teaching

In teaching a second language makes remarkable connections in your brain, especially in children. Studies show bilingual children brain activity is far more apt to use more senses to identify language than monolingual children.

Bilingual brain stores different patterns of the native language and the second language. However, bilingual students need constant learning to boost brain activity.

But to keep each language in check, your brain develops structural patterns to separate the second language from the mother tongue. More astonishing than keeping languages separate is your brain develops a process to identify each language.

Like file cabinets, your brain stores and recalls this information when it is needed. Current research demonstrates the brain matter increases in bilingual learners, showing up as different structural areas in your brain.

Language acquisition outlook for a second language teaching

One of the most difficult parts of teaching a second language is developing lessons for ELL students. A particular area of ELL learning is language acquisition when students are acquiring a second language.

Although it resembles a simple method of learning, it takes more effort to instruct in an inclusive classroom with students who are learning English. An excellent way to support students identified as ELL is to offer student-directed questions.

Allowing students to come up with a variety of questions promotes collaboration and metacognition. Another good way to evaluate ELL learning is to measure their language development skills.

Most school districts implement the WIDA (World-class Instructional Design and Assessment) language assessment program. WIDA testing is a good measure bilingual teachers use to develop a more comprehensive lesson to support ELL learners in the classroom.

Further development in second language teaching

Perhaps, a spectacular part of teaching a second language is how bilingual young children supplements perception abilities. Studies show bilingual babies can perceive in different situations more often than monolingual infants.

Learning a second language also correlates to the diminishment of mental illnesses. Bilingual patients with Alzheimer’s disease show a decrease in the signs of the disease.

Although the bilingual brains show similar diagnoses, there were fewer symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Research is inconclusive at how this occurs, but more studies are promising.

Second language teaching offers many benefits. In learning another language, it is imperative to have the adequate tools.

More importantly, it is crucial to know the benefits you provide to your students when you teach another language. It carries with them throughout their lives.

Barbara Mascareno

Barbara is an educational writer, teacher, and instructional designer. She loves to write K-12 education content, teaching strategies, bilingual education approaches, and foreign language.

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