Essay on French Classes Should be Mandatory For Canadian Students

Essay on French Classes Should be Mandatory For Canadian Students

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Canada has officially been bilingual since the Constitution Act in 1867 (Santrock et al., 284). Since this act researchers have found many advantages of bilingualism on cognitive development. Bilingualism enhances mental flexibility such as divergent thinking, task-switching efficiency, and promotes advanced vocabulary. Bilingual children have superior meta-linguistic awareness; consequently, they are more aware of the structure of language and its nature. Bilinguals are more efficient at attention control; they focus on important tasks and information with ease. French courses should be mandatory for all Canadian students since bilingualism benefits meta-linguistic awareness, mental flexibility, and control of attention.

Mental flexibility is superior in bilingual children since learning two language forces their minds to process two language systems at one time. Bilingualism promotes divergent (a divergent thinker is someone who thinks of many possible solutions to a problem) and creative thinking (Baker, 144-145). This increase of creative thinking gives a wider variety of associations (Baker, 145-146). Bilingualism is also associated with increased meta-cognitive flexibility and better performance on certain perpetual tasks, such as recognizing a perpetual object “embedded” in a visual background or classification tasks (Marian, et al.,1). Their divergent thinking helps relevant aspects of a problem may become more salient to bilingual children since their experiences with two language systems and cultures enable them to incorporate different perspectives to the solution (Bialystok, 2001 pg. 204). Bilingualism promotes divergent thinking that is caused by greater cognitive flexibility.

Bilinguals have greater cognitive flexi...


... middle of paper ...


... Asha. 13 Oct. 2009: n.pg. Web. 7 Sep. 2013.
.

Richards, J., Vailancourt, F., and Watson, W. Survival: Official Language Rights in
Canada. Winnepeg, Manitoba: Hignell Printing Limited, 1992. Print.

Mikulak, Anna. “Speaking Two Languages Also Benefits Low‐Income Children.”
Association for Psychological Science. Association for Psychological Science, 27 Aug. 2012: n.pag. Web. 7 Sep. 2013. .

Millett, Katherine. “The Cognitive Effects of Bilingualism.” Does Knowing Two
Languages Impact Children’s Ability to Reason about Mental States?. The Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota, Apr. 2010. Web. 7 Sep. 2013. .

Santrock, J., Mackenzie-Rivers, A., Leung, K., and Malcomson, T. Life Span
Development, pag. 284-285. Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson Limited, 2003. Print.

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