Core academic subjects such as science, mathematics, and reading are essential for student development, but extracurricular courses can have just as many benefits in learning. Foreign language, for example, is often excluded from the standard curriculum, though it has many advantages for young learners. By participating in foreign language courses, students learn much more than a new vocabulary. They gain a more expansive worldview and appreciation of other cultures along with the valuable attributes discussed below. It is for these reasons that Orinda Academy offers two-tiered foreign language courses for students from grades 8-12.
Improvement in overall language skills
Studying a foreign language not only improves skills in that language, but it also helps to boost a student’s overall understanding of grammar and other characteristics of language. Students who study multiple languages tend to have more advanced reading and writing skills, and this is demonstrated with a strong correlation between language study and higher standardized test scores.
Expanded educational and professional opportunities
In today’s global economy, it is almost a necessity to have foreign language skills to attain the most desirable positions in the job market. Even in school, learning a foreign language can open up new opportunities with study abroad programs and campus employment at the college level.
Increased memory and problem-solving skills
Learning a new language involves lots of memorization, which helps to strengthen the brain’s memory skills. Problem-solving, cognitive tasks, and spatial reasoning also benefit from foreign language instruction. Beginning or continuing foreign language instruction at the middle school level is particularly advantageous because this age is a time of significant cognitive development.
For a closer look at the language and education adventures program offered at Orinda Academy, contact us at (925) 478-4504. As a college preparatory school for students in grades 8-12, we set high academic standards with the luxury of individualized attention and exceptional student activities.