This last sector of these three blogs will be to help you, the parent, to understand how much DEPTH the simple act of learning Spanish (or any second spoken language) will add to your pre teen or teen's brain health. (And yours too!)
Interpersonal Communication - Teenagers, especially boys, often have such a hard time thinking outside of themselves - the filters of self focus almost absolves them of even noticing others, much less responding appropriately to others. How do we fix this? Well, other than putting them in situations with other people, learning another language is HUGE. Students watch the mouth of the Spanish speaker in order to more effectively pronounce the new word. This causes them to look at the FACE of the other person. This simple act is step one to communicating efficiently and effectively. Step one: LOOK at the FACE!
The next part is learning to read the tone and body language all a once.
neurons and synapses that are firing with a realization that not everyone speaks English - there are immigrants who feel as lost as the teen does in their one hour Spanish lesson, but they immigrant feels it ALL THE TIME! Suddenly, that newfound empathy carries them, along with their ability to read someone else's expression-filled face and again practice listening, categorizing, decoding, and then speaking... it's ALL a huge, complex exercise that creates the skill of reading another person effectively. Comprehension in BOTH languages improve dramatically and everything snowballs to a happier, more confident experience with every conversation! Confusion melts away, confidence begins to to the automatic response to meeting a new person, or engaging in any transfer of spoken information. And I think we all agree; a confident, calm person (at any age!) is infinitely more enjoyable to be around for anyone else... which adds to the happiness and contentment of the teen! It's truly a snowballing type situation- for the betterment of all!
CONCLUSION and FEEDBACK:
You have read the past three blogs about brain health:
1) Executive Functioning
2) Short Term Communication
3) and this one, Interpersonal Communication
Which of these three perks do you think will benefit your teen the most in the short term? What about the long term? What about YOU and YOUR brain health? Could the practice of grabbing a few Spanish flashcards boost your brain health? You bet it could! Uncork that potential. Give it five minutes. Then make a meaningful sentence. Let's get going!