At Maryland Care and Early Education we promote the acquisition of a second language from age 3 years up to 5 years of age.
Our 3 year olds learn basic concepts and words in Spanish such as;
- Counting 1-5
Our 4 and 5 years olds take part in the Early Learning Languages Australia (ELLA) Spanish program. This program consists of 7 Apps that focus on different language concepts in Spanish.
The preschool children also engage in a language group time that reinforces the concepts they are learning each month.
- Names of fruit, animals, objects and people
- Following directions
- Visual and audio discrimination
What are the benefits of teaching a second language?
- They become an effective communicator. They develop the ability to listen to and identify sounds in words (an important skill in learning to read and write).They can understand social patterns and interpret the speakers meaning and communicate to a wider audience.
- The learn to block out distractions. A study from York University in Toronto found that exposure to 2 languages gave the children a cognitive advantage in blocking out unnecessary stimuli.
- Boost creativity and problem -solving skills. This is due to increased mental alertness necessary to switch from one language to the next. This is thinking laterally.Memory, critical thinking and concentration is increased.
- Personal. A child’s confidence, self- esteem, resilience, persistence and tolerance for others increases.
- Vocational. Your child’s career opportunities will be greater in an increasing globalised market.
- Promotes cultural awareness and tolerance. These children generally are more accepting of differences, realise that everything is learnt rather than innate, which is also a way to combat prejudices from an early age.
Learning a second language through the ELLA program supports the National Quality Standards
— Promotes a sense of agency 1
- An assessment tool 1.2.1
- Supports intrinsic and gross motor development 2.1,2.2,2.3
- Children’s learning and development is assessed for future planning1.2
- Supportive friendships between children and educators 5.1.2
- A feeling of belonging 5.1.1
- A sense of pride and agency 1.1.6
- A flexible environment for every child 3.1.3
- Freedom of choice 5.2.3
- Thoughtful reflection, informed practices relevant to children 4.2.2