Why Learn French?
Benefits of Language Immersion
Exposing your child to another language is a wonderful gift. In childhood, our brains are more receptive to learning another language, making it easier for young learners to achieve fluency with continued study of the second language. Additionally, recent research has documented some positive effects of language learning that extend into adulthood, including improvement in general cognitive skills. Learning to switch between linguistic systems seems to improve cognitive elasticity, giving bilinguals a leg-up with multi-tasking, problem-solving, and other executive functions throughout their lives. Several studies have even found that bilingual individuals were more resistant than monolinguals to the onset of dementia in later life, so the positive effects of language learning truly can span from childhood, to adulthood and beyond!
To read more about the benefits of immersion, visit:
Why Bilinguals Are Smarter via The New York Times
Speaking More Than One Language Could Prevent Alzheimer’s via NPR
Vive la francophonie!
Learning a second language has a practical side as well, particularly in our increasingly cross-cultural world. There are over 442 million French-speakers in the world, and the international association of French-speaking countries and governments, la Francophonie, comprises over 60 member states and observers. French is an official language in 29 countries (such as France, Canada, Haiti, and many African nations) as well as the overseas departments of France and a handful of other dependent entities such as French Polynesia, Wallis and Futuna, and many other islands around the globe. Speaking French is a useful skill for those who wish to travel or work abroad, and also provides a window into the rich cultural traditions of France and other French-speaking countries.
In Eugene, French Immersion education can begin as early as age 3 here at The Little French School. Many of our students continue developing their French skills at Charlemagne Elementary, a lottery-based public immersion school for grades K-5, and beyond through the French Immersion programs at Roosevelt Middle School and the International High School program at South Eugene High School. Whether students continue as 4J “Frenchies” or move on to other schools after Little French, we are pleased to be the first step in a life-long relationship with the French language for many students!
DARK BLUE - Regions where French is the main language
BLUE - Regions where it is an official language
LIGHT BLUE - Regions where it is a second language
GREEN - Regions where it is a minority language