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Why to Learn a Foreign Language

March 20, 2016

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Ever thought of learning a foreign language? Most schools offer foreign language classes, but sometimes it feels like a real drag to have to sign up to learn something so brand new. There are lots of benefits to learning another language, though, so be sure to give it your best shot! 

Even just learning hello is a great start!Even just learning hello is a great start!Courtesy of documentsdelivered.com

Boosting Brain Power

  • Studies have shown that there are potentially lots of brain benefits to learning a new language. For one thing, it's thought that those who are multilingual may develop a sharpness of mind that allows them to more keenly observe their surroundings and process new information. 
  • If you're multilingual, you may also be better at multitasking than someone who speaks only one language. Because those who speak more than one language have practice slipping from one form of expression to another, their brains may be faster when it comes from moving quickly through more than one task at once. 
  • Learning and using more than one language is kind of like a workout for your brain, and many scientists believe that the more you put your brain to work, the better results you will see. This extended brain work may actually lead to improved memory! 

Learning a new language is great for your brain. Learning a new language is great for your brain. Courtesy of olwomen.com

Expanding Opportunities

  • These days, if you live in a big city you are very likely lucky enough to be able to experience the diversity that comes with having people from all over the world live in one place. If you learn another language, you might find that your opportunities for jobs, friendships, and academic pursuits actually open up quite a bit. 
  • If you live in a country that has more than one official language (like how in Canada both English and French are officially designated) then many employers may actually require that you speak your country's other language. This is something to keep in mind if you think you'd like to work in the government sector. 
  • When you are able to speak another language, you may find that you are more open to traveling to foreign countries. For example, if you've learned Spanish you may be more inclined to take a volunteer job in Mexico than if you only spoke English. 

Expand your job and volunteer opportunities by learning a new language!Expand your job and volunteer opportunities by learning a new language!Courtesy of goabroad.com

Exploring Different Cultures

  • Part of being more open to travel is the joy of exploring different cultures. If you are able to speak the official language of the country you are visiting, you will find this process a lot easier than if you are trying to communicate in English all the time. 
  • For example, if you were to travel to Paris and were able to use French to communicate with locals, you may be introduced to aspects of French culture that you otherwise would have been completely unaware of. It could be an amazing learning experience! 
  • When you speak another language, you are also opened up to forming friendships with other people who speak that language. What's better than a new friend? 

Learning a foreign language can really help when traveling! Learning a foreign language can really help when traveling! Courtesy of french.culturextourism.com

Next time you're complaining about heading to Mandarin, French, or Spanish class, keep in mind that there are loads of fantastic benefits to getting to know a new language!

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