The Benefits of Learning a Second Language

The Benefits of Learning a Second Language

A recent study has shown that speaking a second language can open your mind and enrich your way of thinking.

Different studies had already shown that learning a new language was beneficial for the brain’s health as it activates a specific area of the brain and reinforces it, helping to prevent brain degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

In addition to these studies, scientists have recently proven that it also affects your way of thinking and your perception of the world. For instance, German speakers, to describe a situation, focus on the action’s place whereas English speakers focus on the way you have reached this place. These nuances come from cultural and grammatical constraints and speaking these two languages allows you to adapt your way of thinking according to the situation. It is suggested that for bilinguals, two perceptions co-exist and bring them more flexibility in human cognition.

Speaking a new language definitely gives you an alternative perception of the world. These effects could be compared to listening music with one speaker or in stereo! Much more enriching!

So don’t wait anymore to improve your second language! Check out all our language courses here.

You can find more details of this study in Psychological Science review.

5 Things to Do in Edinburgh this Month

5 Things to Do in Edinburgh this Month

Spring is settling in and a sense of growing excitement and optimism is in the air.  Let’s enjoy it with our selection of 5 things to do this month in Edinburgh.

Edinburgh International Science Festival, various venues, 2nd April – 19th April

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Each year Edinburgh welcomes one of Europe’s largest science festivals where various activities and projects are on offer.
We recommend two events held by brainwaves about languages:

“Is it ever too late to learn a second language?” on 15th April

“Speaking Our Minds” on 15th April

Beltane Fire Festival, Calton Hill, 30th April


Welcome the Spring with the Beltane Fire Society. Make your way up Calton Hill to observe pyrotechnics, processions and masses of body paint.

Ponte City, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, until 26th April

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Mikhael Subotzky and Patrick Waterhouse’s photography exhibition comes to an end this month. It is not too late to appreciate this creative approach to social documentary photography on Ponte City: a skyscraper in Johannesburg that was originally intended as a luxury apartment block for white South Africans but, post-apartheid, has become home to immigrants and refugees from other African nations.

Nick Cave, the Edinburgh Playhouse, 28th April


Don’t miss the intimate show of the multi-talented artist Nick Cave. He will be joined in his solo performances by Warren Ellis (guitar/violin/Mandolin/loops), Martyn Casey (bass), Thomas Wydler (drums) and Barry Adamson (keys/vibes) to present songs from across his considerable catalogue, including selections from 2013′s Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds album Push The Sky Away.

“The aim is to try to create a unique show – something special and out of the ordinary”– Nick Cave

Roy Lichtenstein, National gallery of Modern Art, until 10th January 2016

Roy Lichtenstein

You have plenty of time to enjoy the Roy Lichtenstein exhibition as it runs until next year but why not enjoy it this month? His pop work brings an extra burst of colour to springtime in Edinburgh.