An Early Start to Foreign Language Learning Essay

An Early Start to Foreign Language Learning Essay

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Today there are between six and seven thousand languages being spoken around the world. Millions of children all over the world are learning a second or even third language beginning before they reach high school. For instance, China has more than two hundred million students studying English in elementary school, while the United States has a mere twenty-four thousand learning Chinese (Glod 1). The lack of bilingualism has become an ever-increasing problem in the United States’ ability to compete globally with other economically powerful countries. Satellite programming, increased international travel, and the use of the Internet in different parts of the world have created a global community. No single country can produce all the goods and services that are needed to exist autonomously. Because of this, children have the opportunity to become powerful political and business leaders of the future. Therefore, the need for a second language has become progressively more imperative. Through many studies and reports, experts have determined that the best time to learn a foreign language is during elementary school. However, according to the U.S Department of Education, in the United States only 24% of public elementary schools report teaching a foreign language during this time.
This being said, a problem exists. Only 44% of high school students are currently enrolled in foreign language classes. While Spanish comprises 69% and French makes up additional 18% of their enrollment (Department of Education). Less than 1% combined of these students study languages such as Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, Japanese, Korean, and Russian. During George W. Bush’s presidency, Bush addressed the issue and determined that the United States needs more ...


... middle of paper ...


...hildren have the opportunity to broaden their horizons personally and professionally.



Works Cited

Cognitive Benefits of Learning Language. American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language, Fall 2007. Web. 1 June 2012.
Glod, Maria. “Schools Try Elementary Approach To Teaching Foreign Languages.” Washington Post 8 Aug. 2006. Print.
Marcos, Kathleen. Why, How, and When Should My Child Learn a Second Language?

Kids Source, 26 July 2000. Web. 2 June 2012.

Raab, Nina. “The Cognitive Benefits of Learning a Second Language.” Fusion Huntington Beach. N.p., 27 Nov. 2011. Web. 1 June 2012.
Snuggs, Carla, ed. Foreign Language in Preschool: The Benefits of Teaching Multiple

Languages in Daycare or Preschool. Suite 101, 28 Jan. 2008. Web. 30 May 2012.

Why We Need to Learn a Foreign Language Young! Cracking the Learning Code, n.d. Web. 30 May 2012.

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