Don’t let common misconceptions prevent your child
from taking full advantage of their entitlement to learn
languages. Do any of these myths about language learning
sound familiar? Let’s bust them!
MYTH: Some languages are easier to learn than others.
REALITY: Almost all people have the skills needed to learn
any new language given time and effort. How a learner
perceives any individual language will depend on their
own personal preference. Throughout their language
learning your child will acquire a variety of strategies which
will positively impact on their success, no matter what
language it is they learn.
MYTH: I know English, so I don’t need to learn languages.
REALITY: This myth is very easily busted! Firstly, despite
the common belief that “everyone speaks English”, 75%
of the world’s population do not speak any English at all!
Secondly, acquiring a new language is just one side of
language learning. Through languages, learners also have
a unique opportunity to make meaningful connections
with different people, gain insights into other cultures and
consider new ways of thinking about the world.
MYTH: Languages only matter to people who want to do
careers involving languages.
REALITY: That is not the case – learning languages involves
doing activities that help develop knowledge and skills
that are useful in all walks of life, learning and work.
Therefore, learning another language can enhance most
young people’s lives, regardless of their career choices
and provides a great opportunity to find out more about
different cultures, as well as their own.
MYTH: The younger you are, the easier it is to learn
REALITY: While early learning may have its advantages, it’s
safe to say that it’s never too late to learn a new language.
Younger learners may have some advantages over older
children but the opposite is also true! For example,
younger learners may pick up pronunciation more easily,
but older learners have a wider knowledge of their own
language, which helps them learn new languages.
Useful parental guides on why you should learn a language.