By Alexia Forsythe proud member of Ambassador Squad #teacher5etoiles
What does your second language mean to you? Is it simply another subject you learned in school? A better career opportunity? A lifestyle? Each learner has a different answer to this question, none of which are inherently “right” or “wrong” by any means, but pose a particular significance for everybody.
Over the course of my seventeen years learning French as a second language, this answer has undergone a constant evolution. However, my experience has brought me to the conclusion that my linguistic journey has had a positive impact on a myriad of domains within my life. This is the first of a three-part series on the opportunities offered by my second language.
I’ve wanted to be a teacher for as long as I can remember. When I was a child, I created a “school” in the bedroom my sister and I shared. Despite my sibling being a reluctant first student of mine, I began to develop my passion for teaching from a young age. Throughout my twelve years of schooling, I was enrolled in the Early French Immersion program within my province. Growing up, I had a genuine interest in the language. Thus, in my final year of high school, I made the decision to attend a local French university, Université de Moncton, to obtain a degree in Primary Education.
Living in both Canada, a nation with two official languages, as well as New Brunswick, the only officially bilingual province in the country, multilingualism is an asset in many fields of work, especially in education.
Over the course of my schooling, my bilingualism has presented me with a vast number of opportunities and experiences I wouldn’t have otherwise had, many of which I genuinely feel have advanced both my career and my professional development. I’ve travelled across the country, participated in several enriching French language councils, conferences and competitions, undertaken multiple teaching internships, and worked with youth, as well as general members of the public, in both English and French, meeting too many incredible people to name.
Throughout my second-language education and subsequent experiences, I’ve developed and improved crucial personal and professional skills such as empathy, creativity and problem-solving.
All around, I truly believe my bilingualism has allowed me to reach my full potential within my domain of study. For that, I am undeniably appreciative for my second language.
To be continued…