Thursday, 6 March 2008

Second languages

This business trip is proving to be more educational that I thought. Tonight I was with friends and their children in the west of Singapore, and I learned that all children are taught a second language from junior school age.

Then, talking to colleagues from Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Phillipines, I realised how envious I was that they were able to speak into a culture not only by being there, but by conversing in that language, itself a wonderful repository of history and environment through its structure and use.

I hope to encourage our own son to learn other languages when he starts school in a few years, but acknowledge that language classes in our primary schools is unusual. May be the borough council isn't the right place for curriculum policy, but right now, I wish it was!

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