We all know that Australians love to travel around the globe. We hear their distinctive accent sitting at a caf in Paris or while trekking the Inca trail to Machu Picchu in Peru. In 2011, 82% of Australians spoke only English at home despite living in a multicultural country with over 400 languages spoken around the country.1 Australia had wave after wave of immigration starting with European settlers and more recently Asian migrants. Our school curriculum doesn’t embraced our multicultural society. To revoke the language program in schools would be moving away from our multicultural context.
Why learn a Second Language?
Children born in Australia to English speaking parents have not yet experienced what is like to be living in a different culture and learning a new language. Not only we need to bridge the gap between Australians and migrants in Australia but we also need to consider labor mobility.
Learning a language also means getting an insight into foreign cultures, opening doors to the possibility of exchange programs and employment opportunities for students. We are far beyond colonization and it is time to face globalization.
Studies have shown that learning a second language improve cognitive development helping students with their problem-solving skills, decision-making skills, memory and have a greater appreciation of their mother tongue.
Why learn French?
According to the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie, between 72 million and 260 million speak French in the world2. French is a diverse language that is spoken in every continent of the globe being spoken in more than 20