“In 2021 there were around 6 million people with non-British nationality living in the UK, with 9.6m people born abroad…” according to The Guardian. So unsurprisingly, plurilingualism is snowballing amongst children who are exposed to a mixture of –
- Their parents’ native language or languages
- The English language
- Other languages spoken by friends, carers, etc
Let’s first understand the difference between multilingualism and plurilingualism -–
- Multilingualism is the ability to speak in multiple languages
- Plurilingualism is the ability to switch between multiple languages during the course of a conversation. For example, a plurilingual child might compute and answer a question in a different language than the one used by the asker
And know you know how and why plurilingualism is on the rise, you can imagine the raft of benefits that accompany this “linguistic variation in superdiverse societies”. Let’s take a look at some of them…
How Plurilingualism Equips Children with Lifelong Competitive Edge
The cognitive benefits of plurilingualism are many and varied, including –
- Broadened outlook – Greater likelihood of growing up with innate empathy resulting from the multi-faceted lenses they see the world through.
- Boosted mental capacity – A more finely honed ability to concentrate, make plans, multitask and retain information.
- Expanded learning capabilities – Communicating and understanding in multiple languages can physically enlarge areas of the brain that control the ableness to learn and retain information.
- Reduced stroke damage – A 2017 study at Edinburgh University revealed that multilingual or plurilingual stroke victims are significantly more likely to retain normal cognitive functions upon recovery, compared to their monolingual counterparts.
- Improved health benefits in senior years – Both multilingualism and plurilingualism are credited as being contributory factors to reduced dementia risk in old age, and overall healthier mental ageing.
At La Academia, we offer many and varied options for children and adults across all different stages of their language learning journeys, no matter what language you want and require. Get in touch for a chat about the best suited options for your needs.