“One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.”
― Frank Smith
Learning another language gives the learner the ability to step inside the mind and context of that other culture.
In a world where nations and people are ever more dependent upon on one another to supply goods and services, solve political disputes, and ensure international security, understanding other cultures is paramount. Lack of intercultural sensitivity can lead to mistrust and misunderstandings, to an inability to cooperate, negotiate, and compromise. A person competent in other languages can bridge the gap between cultures, contribute to international diplomacy, and promote national security and world peace.
Research shows that skills and concepts taught in the learners’ home language do not have to be re-taught when they transfer to a second language. A learner who knows how to read and write in one language will develop reading and writing skills in a new language faster.
Britian’s labour government introduced national language strategy in 2002. They wanted to introduce French, Spain, German, Italian and Mandarin languages in primary schools, but the greatest challenge they faced was the teacher supply. For the sustainability of local languages in any country the supply of language teachers is a crucial factor.. It is a problem across the world. English is an international language, which is widely used. Most major world organisations and functions are administered in English and the language is often used between people from different nations. As the world becomes smaller, there will soon be no way to avoid English. So why not learnt it now?
“To have another language is to possess a second soul.” – Charlemagne
– Agnes Benjamin
ICT Facilitator, International Centre for Excellence