Bilingual kids better at math, reading?
Research shows new benefits to growing up speaking two languages.
As if I needed another reason for mommy guilt, along comes a report that bilingual kids are better at, among other things, math.
If math skills are hereditary, my 18-month-old daughter is going to need all the help she can get. So maybe I should have listened to my nanny when she encouraged me last year to start speaking Korean, my sort-of second language, around the house.
The cognitive benefits of bilingualism have been well documented, but new research shows that it also has a positive impact on working memory, which aids math and reading comprehension.
According to information published in the Journal of Experimental Child Psychology:
The study included children aged between 5 and 7 years. Researchers found that bilingual children consistently performed better at tasks that need working memory. Also, the more complex the task was, the better bilinguals performed. People with good working memory have higher self-control and ability to keep distractions away.
Speaking of distractions, the fact that I grew up speaking two languages is not making it easier to write this blog with a toddler demanding my attention every five minutes. But it’s not too late for said toddler – research shows kids can reap the benefits of bilingualism if they are speaking two languages daily by age 10.
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