The Benefits of Learning a Second Language in High School

There are many benefits to learning a foreign language in high school – some obvious, some not so obvious. One study suggests that students who take a foreign language class perform better academically than students who don’t learn a foreign language. Take a look at how learning a foreign language supports academic achievement as well as other benefits you may have never considered.

1. Cognitive Benefits

Studies show that learning a second language improves your memory. As you memorize vocabulary and rules, the mental “muscles” in your brain are stretched and strengthened. If you regularly exercise your memory, you can often remember sequences and lists better. Other cognitive benefits include better problem solving skills, better critical thinking skills, and better multi-tasking abilities.

2. Higher Test Scores

Along the same lines of the cognitive benefits mentioned above, learning a foreign language can also provide many academic benefits. Studies have shown that students who study a foreign language perform better on standardized tests than their monolingual peers. As a result of their language studies, students have higher SAT test scores, ACT test scores, math test scores, and even English reading scores.

3. More Job Opportunities

Speaking more than one language is a skill which will increase your marketability. Colleges and employers tend to prefer candidates who speak one or more foreign languages. For example, big companies tend to have business relationships with other, international companies. In order to communicate with those international partners, companies hire employees who can fluently speak a second language.

4. Cultural Enrichment

Every parent wants their child to be well-rounded, to have an appreciation for other cultures, and to grow up to be a successful, contributing member of society. Learning a foreign language opens doors that would not otherwise be available. Not only can a foreign language provide a competitive edge in the workforce, but it creates a deeper understanding of and appreciation for humanity and culture.

The Kiski School’s modern language courses develop skills in reading, writing, and speaking and aural comprehension of Spanish and Chinese. To learn more about Kiski’s curriculum and how we help our students succeed, feel free to contact us.
 
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Established in 1888, The Kiski School is one of the oldest, private, all-boys, college preparatory boarding schools in Pennsylvania and the United States.  Home to 200 boys, Kiski offers an academically rigorous curriculum that includes AP and Honors courses, 12 varsity sports, and a community that allows boys to thrive through project-based learning and self-discovery.
Kiski's beautiful, 350-acre campus is located in Saltsburg, Pennsylvania, 30 miles east of Pittsburgh, PA.