**guest post from author, Judy Martialay**
Foreign language skills will open doors for your child, regardless of his or her career choice.
Language is about life. Wherever there is communication with people who speak another language, in our country or abroad, knowing another language is an asset or is required. This is why languages are one of the top 8 skills required of all occupations. In many countries, students study the language along with their career preparation.
Native English speakers comprise 5% of the world’s population. Although millions speak or study English, the majority have limited skills, and many prefer to communicate in their language.
The old adage for business is “Buy in your language but sell in the buyer’s language.” Solid lasting business relations are based on trust, friendship, and cultural affinity.
Foreign language skills will open doors
Students of another language can develop appreciation and respect for other cultures, and develop skills to work with people from diverse backgrounds. The ability to communicate in the language of the customer plays a big role in establishing friendship and trust.
These are some of the benefits that proficiency in a second language has for your child and his or her career:
• In the competition for jobs, all things being equal, the candidate who is bilingual has the advantage.
• Bilinguals are needed to interact with employees and customers abroad and in our country.
• Bilinguals can discover and attract more potential customers or clients than monolinguals. They can access important information which is unavailable to monolingual English speakers.
• Employees who are proficient in another language can receive a bonus.
Proficiency in a foreign language = success
The military needs people who are competent in other languages. Every soldier accepted by the Green Berets must know a foreign language. These soldiers are sent to other countries to advise and train local troops. Armed services are just one of the many careers where knowing a language is either required or an asset: health, social services, police, corrections, journalism, foreign service, politics, sports, hospitality, engineering, sales, the arts, travel, and tourism.
Can you think of more? I just read in the newspaper that radio sports announcers need to know how to pronounce the baseball player’s names. There are many players from foreign countries, mostly Spanish-speaking.
Encourage your child to start and/or continue the study of a language along with his or her major subject. Where possible, he or she should strive to earn the Seal of Biliteracy which is awarded upon graduation in many states.
He or she will be able to put this on his or her resumé. This will not only set him or her apart from the crowd; it will also open the door to exciting opportunities.
“Children absorb languages like sponges.” Elementary school teacher
Bonjour! Let’s Learn French:
NABE Book Achievement Award Winner Winter 2018 Children’s Bilingual
Honorable Mention Cultural Diversity Purple Dragonfly Award 2018
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¡HOLA! Let’s Learn Spanish
NABE Pinnacle Book Achievement Award Winner Winter 2017 Children’s Bilingual
Readers’ Favorite Bronze Award Children’s Educational 2017
Honorable Mention Educational Purple Dragonfly Book Award 2017
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Lead with languages