A look at ISB’s Japanese Native Language Program
As you can see by the image below, a vast majority of our community speak more than one language, with 7% speaking Japanese as their native language. A majority of ISB’s student body are students who speak English as a second language.
Though we provide plenty of opportunities to nurture your children’s Japanese language, they will also have friends where they can speak in their mother tongue.
As explained by ISB alum, Shunji Mizoguchi, “I spent a lot of time with my Japanese friends where we spoke our native language.”
“Since there were many Japanese students, there was a Japanese class conducted by a Japanese teacher [which helped me maintain my native language],” shared another ISB alum, Takanori Yoshii.
At ISB, in addition to offering Japanese in our Native Language Program, we help your children maintain their Japanese language by:
“Multilingualism and multiculturalism are assets in our increasingly interconnected world, leading to higher levels of empathy and risk-taking,” said Udagawa. “Native language learning benefits an individual’s emotional well-being enhances academic success, and promotes the acquisition of additional languages.”
There has been considerable research on the importance of native language maintenance and development.
The benefits of maintaining one’s mother tongue while also speaking other languages fluently include:
We believe that native language learning best occurs when there is a strong school-home partnership in place. The following ways are what you, as a parent, can do to help ensure healthy language development:
Learn more about the benefits of maintaining your children’s mother tongue, how you can help ensure their language development at home, and how an international school fosters a language-rich environment.
At an international school, the use of language can differ greatly from language use within local schools and what is used at home.
Native language or mother tongue is referred to as the first language learned in a household, it’s what children first learn from their parents and communities.
School language, true to its name, is the language used while on campus in a classroom. It’s more academic in nature and, at ISB, is English.
What further differentiates an international school is the multitude of languages heard while walking through the halls. International schools, such as ISB, are language-rich environments where diversity is enhanced and celebrated. No matter your children’s mother tongue, they will find friends who speak the same language and have the opportunity to hone their English skills.
Find out more about the difference between a student’s native language and their school language, and how - and why - ISB welcomes Japanese into the classroom.
We often find that parents who speak English as a second language have certain concerns when it comes to their children’s success including:
No matter where your children come from or what language they speak, they will find people living through the exact same experience, they will find their footing and excel in their academics, they will sharpen their English skills and celebrate their mother tongue. At ISB, your children will have their choice when it comes to their university selection.