Speak and Say by Claudia Krusch– from the Sept. 24th issue of Suburban Mama

Posted on September 27, 2007

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Speak and Say

Every time somebody finds out I’m Brazilian they ask me, does your child speak your language? Do you speak Portuguese only at home?

First of all let me introduce myself. I am Claudia Krusch, mother of 3 year old Lucas and I own a Foreign Language Instruction Facility where we teach children and adults foreign languages. My business started after I had my child and I faced the challenge of raising a bilingual child. I wanted to open all the possibilities and offer him the benefits of a second language, following in my parents’ foot steps.

I have been learning English since I was eight and it is still an on going process. So as a mother of a toddler, a speaker of four languages, a linguistics student and researcher, teaching a second or third language has always been part of my life, which I wanted to pass on to my child. It started with speaking Portuguese and showing him some foreign language videos and giving him input. He was my “student” – and with that I began taking baby steps to develop my own Spanish Program.

I have designed Eas y Learn Programs, keeping in mind that learning had to be both fun and educational. Our Program combines the best of many Children’s Spanish Programs offered in the market. The fruit of intense research, classroom experience and experimenting with my own child, has helped me to understand and live the joy and obstacles of raising a bilingual child. My choice to extend other languages to my own child comes from the fact that I’m not a native English speaker. It also comes from my experiences with 4 different languages, my education and research background – all of these combined revealed the amazing discovery of the infinite benefit of sharing this with my child.

My son speaks English extremely fluently, using connectors and expressions that some adults don’t use. He also understands and speaks Portuguese and some Spanish.

I’m a strong advocate for the teaching of foreign language to children, so it is my mission to tell the parents about the benefits of introducing a second language to a child. The question that every parent who comes to our school interested in our courses asks is if the second language will somehow “mess up” their first language acquisition and I’d like to set the record straight that this is a myth, because A child who learns a second language knows intuitively when to use the second language and where to “store” the new vocabulary and sentences. They often ask about the benefits of learning a second language; research shows that:
• Bilingual Children learn to read sooner.
• Bilingual Children tend to be more creative.
• Bilingual Children solve problems easier.
• Studies prove that children exposed to a second language score higher on standardized tests in math and verbal sections.
• Studies show that young children learn a new language faster, retain it better and speak the new language with native pronunciation.
• Bilingual Children understand their culture and diversity better than others, learning pride and respect for diversity.

So why wait? Bring this joyful and wonderful world to your little one!

Claudia Krusch
Mother of Lucas

For more articles and research on the topic, please log on Claudia’s website: www.easylearnlanguages.com and click on resources.

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