Bilingualism, or the gateway to the world

How many of us have been forced to refuse a professional opportunity because their English skills were not fluent enough ? Many French people face this reality on a regular basis. To overcome this, we are proposing a complete immersion starting from three years old, enough to mobilize the language area of the brain as well as to welcome with great joy expatriate children and to discover other cultures.

 

English, in practice

In our schools, English is not a simple workshop but presents itself as a complete immersion. Children benefit from a bilingual environment in the form of four half days a week in French, and the other four half days in English. Our educators are natives’ speakers, meaning English is their mother tongue. The challenge is therefore to maintain the Montessori learning in English by adding a further cultural dimension. French is taught the same way for non-english speakers.

 

Why bilingualism ?

To make the most of their brain malleability...

Even though recent researches indicate many regions of our brain turn on during the slightest mental operation, the functions useful to language find their source in two areas therefore extremely important : the Wernicke's area and the Broca's area.

The first allows oneself to understand languages and the second to express oneself orally in one or many languages. The functioning of these two areas are rather different. The Broca's area creates a specific space for each language while the Wernicke's area does not make any distinction. Yet it must be noted children raised in bilingual or multilingual environments show brains a little different than monolingual children. For them, the Broca's area does not draw a distinction between the languages learned simultaneously. It explains why bilingual children have no issue switching language within the same sentence. This learning process allows them to work on their neuronal vivacity, their confidence, and once they become adults, to acquire some more languages even more easily. 

To discover some other cultures...

The Montessori pedagogy is one for peace. Yet we are convinced the best way to create both empathy and tolerance is to start by understanding others. In this sense, bilingualism happens to be a relevant tool to make children understand that from Canada to India, lifestyles may be different but must be respected nonetheless. Children access cultural diversity in practice. They enjoy immersing themselves in multiple cultures and therefore manage to anchor themselves in a globalized world.

Kindergarten Montessori Paris