English Transforming Students’ Future
Students need to learn English when they are still young (from 3 years old or even sooner). So why should they learn English as early as possible?
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Thu N. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
Reason 1: accent
It has already been established that children who learn a language when they are very young have a much better chance of not having a “foreign” accent when speaking another language. Research from a team at the University of Washington, which focuses specifically on childhood speech perception, has noted that as we get older, it is harder to pick up additional languages with native-like pronunciation. Thus, one very compelling reason to start children off with another language at a young age is to give them the gift of a native accent!
Reason 2: enjoyment
Young children enjoy learning. They don’t care if an activity will improve their cognitive ability or motor skills. They just want to jump in and have a great time doing it. This same approach is true for children learning a new language. We would never try introducing high school students to a foreign language via children’s nursery rhymes, silly songs, and hand puppets while sitting in a circle on the carpet. Yet, for young children, this is the best way to go about it because it makes language learning so much fun. It is amazing how quickly children will pick up a new language while having fun!
Reason 3: Undaunted
The wonderful thing about young children is that they will give things a try without necessarily worrying if it is correct or not. This applies to language learning as well. Young children will often jump right in to try out what they have learned without worrying about mistakes. They are eager to see the response they will get from other students and adults when trying out their new words and vocabulary. It is an exciting and empowering experience for children.
Reason 4: 10,000 hours
Malcolm Gladwell in his book Outliers argues that to learn something well, it takes at least 10,000 hours on task (based on a study by K. Anders Ericsson) as well as the opportunity to learn the given task. It is hard for an adult to find 10,000 hours to devote to language learning. However, if we were to start in childhood, then 10,000 hours spread over several years (or a lifetime) doesn’t sound so bad, does it? Starting children early with language learning gives them this “leg up” that will help them succeed in mastering a language. Plus, using more than one language over a lifetime is the key to the cognitive benefits of bilingualism that research has shown.
So how can English influence a student’s future career?
Firstly, If someone can speak English, he/she will have more job opportunities. Nowadays, a lot of foreign companies set up everywhere in the world, then of course they need to hire employees who can use English as a tool to communicate, discuss, or manage.
Secondly, you can work worldwide instead of being in just your country. Someone who can use English with a Degree Bachelor will have more chances to move to other countries for a better job or a better living environment.
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Thirdly, you will gain more confidence when you apply to any job at any company. After graduation from university, a lot of new students seek a job. If you can use English better than others, then you will have more possibilities to win a better place at that company.
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