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Mastery over Multiple Languages can be Fruitful for Kids: Study

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Bilingual kids attain cognitive and perceptional benefits
Bilingual children have superior emotional and cerebral control than monolingual peers. Pixabay
  • It has been found that bilingual children have superior emotional and cerebral control than monolingual peers
  • Apart from the cognitive wealth, bilingual kids also attain perceptual benefit while transforming speaker’s voice
  • The skill of perceiving knowledge about the speaker enhances with the age

US, June 13, 2017: Speaking multiple languages has always been a benison for a person. In this globalized era, besides gaining economic advantages and earning jobs for themselves, linguistic qualifications have served the people in many other ways as well.

According to a study, from the very early years of life, speaking different lines has proved to be fruitful. It has been found that bilingual children have superior emotional and cerebral control than monolingual peers which helps them to concentrate and reflect on things in the better manner. It also enhances their skills in identifying different voices.

According to ANI report, researchers have been engaged in a study which reveals that bilingual kids may derive experience from hearing to differentiated accented speeches securing a better knowledge and wider social perception. This helps them in recognizing several languages.

Apart from the cognitive wealth, bilingual kids also attain perceptual benefit while transforming speaker’s voice. Susannah Levi from the New York University states that the perceptional advantage resides in the heart of the vocal understanding. The aim is not to process the linguistic orientation but to unfold the speaker’s information. Levi stresses on the fact that speech carries with it the details of the message being conveyed and information about the speaker.

An examination was carried out to test the validity of the benefits of bilingualism in kids. 41 kids were selected which included 19 bilingual children and 22 monolingual English speakers. They were further categorized according to their age groups: below nine years and above ten years.

It was found that the latter age group performed better than the former group which proves the fact that the skill of perceiving knowledge about the speaker enhances with the age. Children who held fluency in speaking English and German also performed better than their monolingual friends in identifying and transforming voices as per suggested by Levi. Bilingual children not only recognized the discriminating voices but were also capable of learning different languages faster than the other group of children.

According to Levi, the study was ideal to examine the advantages of speaking multiple languages as it compared the children on the basis of both, a familiar language and an unfamiliar language to all the participants.

– prepared by Himanshi Goyal of Newsgram, Twitter: @himanshi1104

 

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Being Bilingual May Not Benefit Your Kids

In addition, the researchers considered children's German and Turkish vocabulary size and exposure to both languages

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Do you think bilingualism will benefit your kids in any way? Think twice. A new study suggests that although speaking more than one language can provide social opportunities along the way, bilingual children are not necessarily more advantageous than monolingual ones when it comes to executive functions.

Executive function includes remembering instructions, controlling responses, and shifting swiftly between tasks.

“The research of executive functions is important because they have direct application to success in both real-life and academic situations,” said Julia Jaekel, associate professor from the University of Tennessee in the US.

For the study, the team examined 337 children aged five and 15 among which the first group spoke both Turkish and German and the other group spoke only German.

Bilingual kids attain cognitive and perceptional benefits
Being Bilingual May Not Benefit Your Kids. Pixabay

They used a computer test to compare the executive function of two groups of children.

The results, published in PLOS ONE, showed no difference in the executive functions of the two groups.

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In addition, the researchers considered children’s German and Turkish vocabulary size and exposure to both languages.

However, it is important to continue the research on this topic so parents, educators, and policymakers do not overpromise on the benefits of speaking a second language, noted Nils Jaekel, clinical assistant professor at the varsity. (IANS)