Have you ever wondered why young children love playing with languages so much?
Well, it's simple. A child is attracted to the magic of nursery rhymes and songs. He likes to imitate the pronunciation of strange new words; they play with rhyming words through repetition. By doing all of this, your child listens to the sounds of the language and subconsciously absorbs the rhythm, stress, intonation and pronunciation of words.
As we grow up, we sometimes lose this fascination with words and sounds, we become uncomfortable, and we don't have as many opportunities to play unhindered with language. Adapting early to the sounds of another language offers many advantages that will become apparent later.
Learning to speak several languages: what are the benefits?
It's never too early to start learning a language: it's fun, it promotes healthy development, and the many cognitive and social benefits will last a lifetime. Here are some of the reasons why learning a language gives your child a huge advantage, and how you can help them, whether or not you know another language.
Give them a head start
Children who learn another language before the age of five use the same part of the brain to acquire that second language that they use to learn their first language. Younger learners are also not inhibited by the fear of making mistakes, which is sometimes a barrier for older beginners. This is also the optimal time because their brains are still developing and growing.
Feed their brains
Research shows that learning a second language develops the ability to solve problems and work with abstract concepts. It also stimulates the development of synthesis, critical thinking, listening and analysis skills, while stimulating memory, concentration and the ability to multitask. Children who are proficient in other languages also show signs of increased creativity and mental flexibility. Finally, it allows the acquisition of a more open attitude towards other cultures, other modes of thought and communication. At the individual level, it improves personality and increases feelings of self-esteem.
Improve their academic results
The cognitive benefits of learning a language have a direct impact on a child's academic performance. Compared to those who speak no other language, bilingual children have better reading, writing, and math skills, and they generally perform better on standardized tests.
Nurture their curiosity, cultural sensitivity, empathy and tolerance
As mentioned earlier, children who are exposed to other languages early on have more positive attitudes toward the cultures associated with those languages. The experience of learning a language will allow them to experience the world in ways they might not have otherwise. In addition, it will surely lead them to become more responsible, more engaged and more open-minded citizens of the world. It will reduce barriers to travel and, therefore, encourage continued exposure to other cultures and allow these future adults to interact more fully with others thanks to a greater sense and taste for relationships.
Prepare the brain for learning other languages
Contrary to popular belief, young children are not disoriented by the introduction of several languages at the same time. Each of the languages learned will probably be learned in a different way, and it is possible that depending on the environment or the period one language takes precedence over the other and vice versa.
Not only do children naturally adapt to multilingual environments, but acquiring a second language at an early age prepares the brain for learning multiple other languages, opening up a world of possibilities for later. You should know that children do not “absorb” languages effortlessly just because they are very young. Frequent and regular exposure is necessary as well as the possibility of expressing oneself in this second language. In other words, letting your mini watch films in English all day will not allow it to be bilingual.
An asset for hobbies
Knowledge of diverse languages and cultures is a gateway to a better understanding and appreciation of a wide range of other subjects, including art, music, cooking, film, science and philosophy. It educates and expands the mind in unlimited ways and constitutes the true core of a liberal education.
A future competitive advantage
And even if you find it hard to imagine that your little one will one day grow up, you should know that speaking several languages will serve them well in their professional future in an increasingly globalized society. Indeed, the study of a foreign language constitutes a significant competitive advantage when looking for a job in a wide range of fields - your little one will have more job opportunities at his disposal thanks to the head start he has he will have been able to learn languages from his childhood. Would you like to give him as many cards as possible and open as many doors as possible for him to succeed? So keep reading this article.
How can we prepare the ground?
Whether you are bilingual or this is your first experience with another language, your support will make a huge difference to your child's success. You don't need to be fluent in the language your child is learning to create an encouraging and active learning environment. Give them as many opportunities as possible to have authentic experiences and encourage language games...games like Magic Mat .
Eh yes ! This play mat combines fun and learning. It puts an end to the constant compromises and headaches of parents when choosing toys because it encompasses everything you can look for for your child: a game that promotes interaction, education (notably through learning languages) and sustainability.
The principle of the game
To tell you a little more, it's actually an activity mat that also serves as an activity and puzzle mat. It is in the form of a pretty map of the world which awakens baby's curiosity and passion. Above all, it offers your little one the opportunity to improve their language learning from an early age thanks to its multilingual qualities. French, English and Spanish are on the program. These language options are used through games that include several difficulty levels (to suit all ages, but also to never get tired of them!)
For the more creative, recording your own voice with the pen is also an option. Your little wolf will develop his thinking and his ability to solve problems in a musical, fun and multilingual atmosphere.
English and Spanish
Our team obviously wanted to favor the English language because it is a universal language - it is not uncommon to hear that English is the most important skill a person can have: knowing how to speak English will be necessary to get by in life. And if your little one is a future traveler, the English language will be more than useful for communicating abroad.
And why Spanish? We are lucky, in France, to count ourselves among Spain's close neighbors, which is a fabulous holiday destination: beach, warmth, good humor, tapas... Don't you agree? 😉
However, trips abroad are always tastier when you speak the language of the country, and when you are able to immerse yourself in the culture: being able to interact with the locals, listen to the radio, watch television or read the newspapers. in the language in question for example. As a French person, it is therefore important to be able to speak this language, especially since it is one of the most spoken languages in the world and is also quite similar to French.
Vocabulary basics, and more…
The Magic Mat will allow your child to enrich his vocabulary considerably. By stating the countries, animals, inhabitants of a geographical area or even important monuments of the world, the little voice of the Magic Mat will allow your little one to learn the basics of their own language, as well as English and Spanish. And that, from his first years of life. The voice of the Magic Mat then helps children learn new concepts, thanks to its different levels of difficulty (the voice asks simple questions, then states puzzles that the child will have to solve.)
Work on your 3 senses.
The Magic Mat was also designed to improve the pronunciation of words for your child. Your baby will enjoy imitating the voice which will teach him new words in different languages. He will quickly integrate the words later thanks to the illustrations on the mat card that he will have to indicate (at the request of the pen). Baby works on his 3 senses: hearing, touch, and sight. Ultimately, it automatically assimilates
words to things, and as a bonus, in different languages. Learning an essential language will therefore be done with pleasure and in a fun, interactive atmosphere and... with music!
All in song!
Indeed, music is a good way to integrate a new language into your little one's world. Teaching him new words from a young age using songs immediately makes learning easier! We think, for example, of the music of the alphabet. The design of the Magic Mat was made with this idea in mind. We have integrated melodies into this game to help him memorize certain terms. Whether in French, English or Spanish, your child memorizes the basics of vocabulary much better, while having a lot of fun.
A friendly and beneficial game for everyone
Singing, dancing, laughing... These are activities that bring people together. So why not sit down with your child and review your languages alongside them? The Magic Mat was also designed for spending quality time with the family. Guide your child, watch them have fun and have fun with them. Sometimes, it's even the children who manage to answer the questions first!
The Magic Mat, yes! But not only
Our little gem allows you to expose your child to several languages in the best possible conditions, but here is some advice from friends: don't hesitate to introduce more of the foreign language into their daily life. Integrate it frequently and regularly through nursery rhymes, reading, etc. Interact with him in a way that makes him want to express himself in the language. Above all, don't force him, let him go at his own pace.
To conclude , it is clear that language skills are of vital importance today. If you need proof, look at how many job postings require English language proficiency as an essential qualification for applicants.
As we have explained, the preschool period is conducive to language learning because of the adaptability of toddlers' brains. Children learn new things with incredible ease when introduced early in life.
We all want the best for our baby, and thus give them the best chance of succeeding in life. Knowing that it is recommended to start learning languages before your child is even a year old, what could be better than introducing them with a language game designed and adapted to all ages? The Magic Mat not only combines all the qualities often sought after in a single toy, but also creates real moments of happiness and sharing with family which will ultimately prove very beneficial for the development and future of the apple of your eye.
https://www.leadwithlanguages.org/why-learn-languages/early-childhood-elementary/#:~:text=Nurture%20Their%20Curiosity%2 C%20Cultural%20Sensitivity,might%20otherwise%20have%20not%20experienced .
https://www.ithaca.edu/academics/school-humanities-and-sciences/modern-languages-and-literatures/why-you-should-study-fo reign-language#:~:text=The%20study% 20of%20foreign%20languages%20enhances%20listening%20skills%20and%20memory,English%20increase%2C%20and%20creativity%20grows .
https://sparklebox.school/blog/why-it-is-important-to-learn-english-at-an-early-age/#:~:text=Learning%20the%20English%20lan guage%20at,exchange %20programs%20or%20studying%20abroad .
https://www.laroutedeslangues.com/blog/5-bonnes-raisons-de-parler-Espagne/#:~:text=2%C3%A8me%20bonne%20raison%2 0de%20parler,si%20elle%20est %20practiqu%C3%A9e%20r%C3%A9guli%C3%A8rement .