The ways we use language has been altered by the eruption of the Internet and social media, and the definition of literacy has evolved to include the media used to communicate, not just writing and reading but other media as well.
A Second Language Advantage
As a result, we understand more and more how important it is to acquire skills in a second language. Learning a second language has so many benefits it’s hard to argue against the practice, actually – people who learn second languages improve their overall reasoning skills, do better in their studies, understand the mechanics and implications of language in an abstract way, and simply understand the world better.
More importantly, learning a second language will actually improve your skill and comprehension of your native language, even if you’re an adult with no prior experience with a second language, or if the language you’re trying to learn has no direct relation to your native language. The ways that learning a second language will help you with your first are varied; we’ll just pick a few to mention.
Helping Your Native Tongue
You’ll Think About Language. Most of us simply speak and write and never pause to wonder why certain words are used or why certain rules get broken acceptably or where the words we’re using come from and why they have certain implications. Learning a second language forces us to actually think of language as a system, a creation that is constantly changing and evolving. Carrying this over to our native language we start to see the way things fit together, and make smarter choices about them.
You’ll Catch Up with the World. It’s very common globally for people to speak more than one language, often more than two. It’s a strange side-effect of the Western attitude to be monolingual. By learning a second language you’ll be joining the worldwide club of people who can speak to different groups of their neighbors with equal ease.
You’ll Improve in Other Areas. Language skills develop areas of the brain and transfer to any other area of your life where abstract thought is needed. Taking on a second language will clarify your thought process and improve your performance in other areas.
There’s simply no reason not to learn another language. We all have the ability to learn and speak a second language, and thus we all have the opportunity to benefit from it!