So, why learn French, you ask?
A statement most parents make ......first of all, it's an intellectual exercise for the brain, a challenge, it's like a crossword puzzle and it stimulates your mind...we are given certain capacities and we were given those capacities to use! Learning French is also a discipline, you learn grammar, structure, vocabulary and you also learn humor and so much more about another culture!
Being bilingual will be a definite assist when seeking employment, it helps you in international travel, it helps you undertake more responsibilities, and it builds confidence. Today's students have been, either in reality or virtually, around the world, and languages, including French, are not going to disappear.
Learning French helps you to understand other people and their culture. The word "to eat" in Chinese really means "to eat rice", in English we say, "to break bread"....a view into a whole different culture, geography and economy.
Learning French gives you the ability to discover new ideas and new thoughts, to look at things in a different perspective. Language is about discovering a new world, and that new world will certainly be one where ideas, knowledge and communication will be the currency. Learning another language is like giving a gold deposit to your child, but without the risk. Knowledge does make people happy, there's a joy to learning, the great "eureka!" feeling of understanding, the happiness of discovery, the satisfaction of knowing that one has done one's best for oneself and society, no one has ever regretted the opportunity to learn another language.....
Your child(ren) have everything to gain and nothing to lose!
What are the benefits of knowing a second language?
In addition to developing a lifelong ability to communicate with more people, children may derive other benefits from early language instruction, including improved overall school performance and superior problem-solving skills. Knowing a second language ultimately provides a competitive advantage in the workforce by opening up additional job opportunities.
Students of foreign languages score statistically higher on standardized tests conducted in English. In its 1992 report, College Bound Seniors: The 1992 Profile of SAT and Achievement Test Takers, the College Entrance Examination Board reported that students who averaged 4 or more years of foreign language study scored higher on the verbal section of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) than those who had studied 4 or more years in any other subject area. In addition, the average mathematics score for individuals who had taken 4 or more years of foreign language study was identical to the average score
of those who had studied 4 years of mathematics. These findings are consistent with College Board profiles for previous years.
Students of foreign languages have access to a greater number of career possibilities and develop a deeper understanding of their own and other cultures. Some evidence also suggests that children who receive second language instruction are more creative and better at solving complex problems. The benefits to society are many. Canadians fluent in other languages enhance our economic competitiveness abroad, improve global communication, and maintain our political and security interests.
- increases your child's personal pleasures such as the enjoyment of literature, art, music, theatre, travel, and personal relationships;
- increases your child's understanding of and respect for other peoples and other cultures;
- gives your child access to a larger pool of information and to more educational and career opportunities.
What are the benefits of learning a second language?
- develops your child's listening and learning skills as well as self-discipline;
- increases cognitive abilities, creating a more flexible thinker;
- enhances his knowledge of and his ability to communicate in his first language;
- makes learning a third or fourth language much easier.
Why is French the logical language for Canadians?
French is the national second language for many Canadians because it is so widely used and accessible throughout the country. It is the mother tongue of one Canadian in four. With French we have the advantage of texts, references and library books prepared for the Francophone market in this country; large numbers of French-speaking teachers; access to role models and activities in Francophone communities as well as access to the French media; and sufficient interest in the language to support viable programs throughout the country.
Why is French considered a world language?
- Estimates of the number of persons speaking French around the world range from 100,000,000 to 250,000,000.
- 25 countries have French as one of their official languages.
- French and English are the languages of world diplomacy. French is an official working language of the United Nations, the International Red Cross, the International Olympic Committee, the European Economic Community, and the International Labour Bureau.
- French is the second more frequently known language by Europeans in addition to their mother tongue. Nearly 1/5 of non-Francophone Europeans say they know French.
- French is the second most frequently taught language in the world. It is the second most prevalent language on the internet.
What is the value of knowing French?
- helps your child to understand more about himself, his country, and his fellow Canadians;
- gives your child a competitive edge in the job market anywhere in Canada and in many other countries.
"Nowadays, bilingualism is increasingly viewed as a certified asset, one that provides mobility and insight. According to Karl Moore, a management specialist at McGill University, there is a disproportionate number of Canadians running large international organizations the world over. The fact that they come from a smaller, and bilingual, country makes them better suited than, say, Americans or Britons to understand and handle the various cultural sensitivities at play in the global economy." - Benoit Aubin, "Speaking in Tongues," Macleans.ca
Throughout the past five years, French has come in handy for me at the most surprising times. I feel a thrill whenever I can conquer a situation due to this and I feel proud to come from a country that recognizes it as an official language. I want to encourage these programs to continue so that we can continue to ignore international language boundaries. - Sheena Tieffel, Merrit, B.C.
Why is it better for my child to learn a language in elementary school?
Studies have shown -- and experience has supported -- that children who learn a language before the onset of adolescence are much more likely to have native-like pronunciation. A number of experts attribute this proficiency to physiological changes that occur in the maturing brain as a child enters puberty. Of course, as with any subject, the more years a child can devote to learning a language, the more competent he or she will become. In any case, introducing children to alternative ways of expressing themselves and to different cultures generally broadens their outlook and gives them the opportunity to communicate with many more people.
By joining Canadian Parents for French you will receive Provincial/National newsletters, be kept aware of and involved in your child's activities and many more resources are available to you!
FUN IN FRENCH!