Gives brains a boost
In a recent article in The New Yorker, Malcolm Gladwell quotes James Flynn, a renowned scientist, as saying The mind is much more like a muscle than we’ve ever realizedâ€¦ It needs to get cognitive exercise. It’s not some piece of clay on which you put an indelible mark. Research into the effects of bilingualism on children suggests that exposure to more than one language is an excellent way of flexing those brain musclesâ€”and building them up too! Bilingual children in one study reported in Nature showed a significantly larger density of grey matter in their brains. And those who had been exposed to a second language from an early age proved to have the most grey matter of all. Grey matter is responsible for processing information, including memory, speech and sensory perception. And if it can be increased by exposure to a second language, then language learning would be just like taking your brain to the gym!