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OPINION: learning foreign languages, the earlier the better.|
Reasons: I am a English major student in China, a Chinese foreign teacher in Korea. Talking of learning foreign languages, I think I have more to say. As a Chinese student, I started learning English from middle school. At that time, most students in our class had learnt English in their elementary schools. Honestly speaking, every English class in the first year made me stressed out. These students did very good job, but not including me. I worked so hard to catch up with them. Luckily, I made it in the last year in middle school. That's not all. Since Chinese teaching model focuses more on scores, I could write and read English, but couldn't speak it. Not until my college year, I started to learn how to speak in English. Thanks to my efforts, now I can speak good English. But during the process, I suffered a lot. When you start speaking a foreign language, pronounciation matters. No matter how hard I tried to imitate and tried to practice, I still couldn't be confident about my pronounciation, which saddens me. But in our class in college, those who received good English training usually had awesome performance in many English speeching contests. Then I couldn't help thinking if I could learn English at earlier age and in better environment, wjhat would happen? I think at least I would be more confident and more competitive in my life.
Since now I am in Korea, working as a foreign teacher, I become more sure of the idea "to learn foreign languages, the earlier the better. Actually I teach in an elementary school where six grades all have their Chinese classes once a week, as well as preschoolers. You can't believe that sixth-grade students are the worst in learning Chinese, especially in terms of pronounciation. I teach six grade only six to eight phrases in one 40-minute class. But they still can't grasp them. But as I teach earlier grades, they are marvelous! Their pronouciation is the best. And the interesting thing is, the earlier the better. Preschool students are just like a repeater. You teach them what, and they repeat what. But I have to say, preschoolers they can't analyse. They just know the sentence and they just can speak the sentence, while higher grades they can analyse how to use the sentence and how to make their own. Thus I should make my opinion clear in this way: the earlier you learn a foreign language, the better your language sense is. But age is not the only thing that matters. As you grow older, you keep learning, thinking and analyzing, you can make a different.
However, the follow-ups is only for my English study. Now I can speak English, French, Japanese and a little Korean. I have learnt French and Japanese in my college years. And I started to learn Korean from the beginning of this year. Since I live in Korea, it becomes easier for me to learn Korean. Let alone age, I think if you wanna learn some foreign languages, the best way is to stay and live in that country. Doesn't it sound better?(just joking~)
That's all I wanna say~