Learning a language isn't difficult. Not if you move to a country where they speak the language and live there among them a couple of years. When you're removed from any real society that speaks the language you want to learn, as you would be in a classroom, language learning can be exceedingly difficult. Not to mention, language keeps changing; just imagine how hard someone in India would have to work learning all the expressions that go in and out its usage, to man a call center phone and convince you that he was American. There are slang words, little shades of meaning, idioms it can all get quite overwhelming. Which is where language immersion programs come in.
In many public schools across the country, full immersion language programs are becoming more and more common especially for useful for languages like Chinese, Korean and German. So should you choose language immersion programs for your child? Well, they only work for people who learn in a certain way. Let's take a closer look.
In a normal language class, you learn a new language through a language you know already. Language immersion is where you're completely cut off from any language that you're familiar with. It's like you are picked up from America and dropped in the middle of rural China where not one soul speaks one word of English. To get anything done, you have to concentrate hard and find ways which to communicate in Chinese. Experts believe that these work best for toddlers who won't be frustrated to not have their mother tongue to turn to, because they don't speak any language properly just yet.
Language immersion daycare happens to be quite popular these days. And this is for two reasons not only do you know that your child is learning a new language effortlessly as he just goes about his day, you know that he is learning it from other children his age. And this is the best way. Picking language immersion programs for your little children can be especially useful. They end up learning not just the foreign language, they learn their own language much better too. The whole experience gets them thinking about language like they never otherwise would.
Before you begin looking up language immersion programs for your child, there are a few things you should think about. Language immersion may be new in America; in places like India for instance though, language immersion in English is very common. Schools for the rich advertise immersion experiences where children, once they come into school, are absolutely forbidden from speaking in anything other than English. These children, growing up, often neglect to learn their own language properly. And neither does language immersion teach them perfect English. Not for a minute would a native English speaker reading something written by a student of such a school think that it was written by a fellow native English speaker. And of course, their grasp of their own language remains far from satisfactory too.
Critics of language immersion programs in America worry about this happening here too an imperfect grasp on the foreign language and an imperfect grasp over the native language too.