You may think that you are just too old to learn a second language. However, if English is your primary language, you should easily be able to grasp Spanish and French, as they are very similar to English. You’ll find it easier to learn a new language if it’s somewhat similar to your first language.
You can find classes at institutions such as cursosdeinglesmanchester.es, for example, with simple lessons in the basics to get you started. The linked site is in Spanish, but Google Chrome will translate it into English for you. Here are five reasons you should consider learning a new language, no matter what your age.
Strengthen Brain Function at Any Age
Challenging your brain to learn a new language actually raises the level of brain function. You might think that you’ll quickly forget simple terms, but your brain will actually be pretty likely to make the connection and help you translate the phrase you wish to speak. Research shows that learning a second language actually improves the structure and efficiency of the brain, regardless of age.
Keep Your Mind Sharp as You Age
We lose a bit of cognitive functioning during the normal aging process, but language skills remain largely intact. Research shows that people who are bilingual can delay the onset of dementia in old age by an average of 4.5 years. Learning a second language can help aging adults remain functional and sharp for a longer period of time.
Expand Travel Opportunities
When you retire or start to think about retiring, international travel may be on your bucket list. Being able to communicate with the locals is important, so learning a second language is almost a must. This is especially important if you plan to purchase vacation property in another country and make friends there.
It’s Not Much Harder to Learn Languages as an Adult
While there are some benefits to learning a second language as a child, many adults learn to speak one or more additional languages quite fluently. Repetition helps adults retain information. Your brain never stops learning, even if you have a disability or health condition that affects brain function.
Boost Your Career and Make More Money
Some languages are worth more than others, but workers can generally earn what amounts to a 2 percent annual language bonus on average. This assumes you’ll use your new language skills at your job, and you’ll find that many positions nowadays list bilingualism as preferred or required in job postings. Learning a second (or third) language will give you a career advantage for the rest of your working life.
How Hard Is It?
Languages often have similarities to other languages. Latin is a base for many English, Spanish and French words. With so many languages tied together and sharing common histories, it makes learning second and even third languages a smoother task to accomplish.
Old dogs can learn new tricks, and adults of any age can learn a new language. Making associations between languages helps a great deal, as does good old determination.
Have confidence when you start with a second language. It may seem slightly frustrating in the beginning, but you will get it with practice. Using audio tapes and videos can help.
If you can learn to write a second language, you are more likely to grasp the language at a higher level. Don’t give up! It takes practice and many hours of work, but the rewards of international communication is worth the time.
How About You?
Do you speak more than one language? Did you learn a second language as a child or as an adult? How hard was it to learn how to speak another language?
This post was underwritten by Calvin Page; please read my disclosure here.
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