Do you speak a second language? How about more than two? I learned Spanish in high school and college but never became fluent. Given the need, I would be able to navigate around Spain to get food, shelter and find the bathroom, but I may end up lost or worse, cheated out of some money.
Cole took lessons for two years in preschool and Jake went through a session online with K12. Both were excellent for beginning exposure to the language and I was able to help practice homework and speak to them. It was great being able to recall so many words and phrases from what I had learned but I knew I wanted more for my kids.
Today it is so important to have skills that enable you to be flexible and offer more to a prospective employer or even for your own business. It will help open doors and allow you to expand beyond your culture.
The boys haven’t taken lessons in a year and I think we will start back up this summer with K12 once again. Timing is crucial when learning a second language and they are still young enough to gain a better hold on Spanish to make it a bit easier and more fun for them. Unfortunately most schools around here don’t start a language until they reach 6th grade and by then it is already so much more of a challenge. Here are two articles on why it’s hard for us adults and ways it can be made easier.
Every now and then I say words or phrases to Claire in Spanish and English so she is aware of both sounds. Soon enough she will be taking lessons in some form and then all four of us can talk in code without Mark understanding. He only knows a tiny bit of French.
What are you doing with your children to get them on the path of speaking a second language? I’d love to hear your experiences and what has worked or failed for your family.