Pursuing Language Immersion Education

From full-time immersion programs within a school to weekend classes in the community, Metro Atlanta offers a wide range of opportunities for language education. From the city to the suburbs, there’s sure to be a program that is a perfect fit for your child and family.

FAQs About Language Immersion

What's the best age to start immersion education?

It’s never too late, but the earlier the better. Our brains are most flexible in early childhood, and a young learner’s curiosity about her world is a tremendous asset for learning anything and everything, including a foreign language. Children who are not yet reading can focus on verbal communication without the difficulties of written grammar, syntax, and spelling. 

Will learning a foreign language at a young age interfere with learning English?

Not at all, and studies have shown that learning a second language actually enhances a child’s development in the first language. Additionally, the challenge of learning two languages at once can lead to cognitive benefits for the child, such as greater ability to focus his attention.

How do you teach in a foreign language to students who are new to that language?

For students who are new to the immersive language, teachers use a variety of techniques to get their message across while speaking only the immersive language. Visual aids, body language, manipulatives, and exaggerated facial expressions are extremely effective communication tools. These nonverbal cues and the human connection between teacher and students spark children’s engagement and curiosity, leading to a lifetime of discovery.

How can I support my child in an immersion program if I don't know the language?

There are many ways to support your child’s education, even if you don’t speak the immersion language. Read to your child every day in your primary language, and also encourage your child’s use of both his/her native language and the immersion language outside the classroom. Foreign language films, cultural festivals, and playdates with fellow immersion learners are also excellent opportunities to encourage your child’s growth.

“The limits of my language are the limits of my world.”

- Ludwig Wittgenstein

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16 Official Languages

Zimbabwe has SIXTEEN official languages, more than any other nation. The languages are: Chewa, Chibarwe, English, Kalanga, Koisan, Nambya, Ndau, Ndebele, Shangani, Shona, sign language, Sotho, Tonga, Tswana, Venda and Xhosa. English, Shone, and Ndebele are the languages most widely spoken by Zimbabweans.

Resources

What does the research say about Language Immersion?