The principal rationale for learning additional languages is to further intercultural awareness and international-mindedness, both central to the IB’s mission, through:
• the acquisition of the language of a culture, and
• the possibilities to reflect upon and explore cultural perspectives.
The ability to communicate in a variety of modes in more than one language is essential to the concept of an international education that promotes intercultural understanding.
In all IB programmes, the role of language is valued as central to developing critical thinking, which is essential for the cultivation of intercultural awareness, international-mindedness and global citizenship. Language is integral to exploring and sustaining personal development and cultural identity, and provides an intellectual framework to support conceptual development.
The IB acknowledges that learning additional languages greatly contributes to the holistic development of students and to the strengthening of lifelong learning skills. Language is central to learning, as well as to literacy. Learning a language in the MYP equips students with the necessary multiliteracy skills and attitudes to be interculturally competent, enabling them to communicate successfully in the global contexts of the 21st century.
The study of an additional language provides students with the opportunity to:
• develop insights into the features, processes and craft of language and the concept of culture
• realize that there are diverse ways of living, behaving and viewing the world.
The MYP Language Acquisition course aims to encourage students to:
• gain competence in a language other than their mother tongue
• develop a respect for, and understanding of, diverse linguistic and cultural heritages
• become equipped with a skills base to facilitate further language learning.