Who said learning English was just for the young? You’re never too old to learn something new. There are plenty of benefits of learning new skills, especially languages, in our senior years. And with increasing research showing the advantages to our brain function, it seems it may actually be good for your health as well.

Check out these benefits of learning English in your 60s and beyond. And while you’re here, why not enroll in our English course for the over 55s?

It keeps the brain active and young

Throughout our lifetime, our brains change more than any other part of our body. And as we age, our mental functions such as concentration and memory start to get worse. However, research shows that learning a language may actually be able to slow down these changes. It can even help delay the appearance of Alzheimer’s and dementia, as well as being a great workout for your brain. Although learning a language as an adult is mentally challenging, you’ll learn to think more creatively and critically, and use parts of the brain you never knew you had.

Travelling abroad is much easier

A love for travel is great motivation to learn English in your 60s, 70s and beyond. English is still the global language, and often it’s what foreigners use to communicate when they don’t share the same mother tongue. Learning the basics will help you in lots of different situations, such as asking for directions, reading menus, or understanding street signs. But more importantly, learning English may lead to an unexpected conversation with the locals – even if it’s just about the weather! And if you’re travelling in an English speaking country like the USA or Australia, it’ll open doors to another culture as well.

Your social circle will grow

Learning a new language lets you become part of a new community. You’ll meet lots of interesting people, from all walks of life, who all share the same goal as you. Some of your classmates could be ex-neurosurgeons, pilots or retired artists, for example. With such a variety of backgrounds, you’ll enjoy discussing a variety of life experiences and stories with each other.

Nowadays, all the latest technology has made connecting with people from all over the world easier than ever. So if you want to expand your English network further, try joining an online language exchange, or connecting with users on gaming apps like Candy Crush or Duolingo.
English is the language of the internet after all!

Check out this article for more apps to help you learn English.

Watch your favourite TV series and films in original version

Have you ever thought about what George Clooney really sounds like? Many people have only seen films and TV series that have been dubbed into their own language. This is perfect for entertainment, but often the meaning is lost in translation. And it’s not quite the same experience when the actors’ lips move out of sync with the voice. Imagine being able to watch those great classics in their original language?

At first, you may find the listening difficult, and understanding different accents can be a challenge. But the key to learning any language is practice. Start small, with short clips of about twenty minutes. And once you’ve mastered that, try watching a longer feature-length film.

Set yourself new goals for later life and retirement

Maybe one of your dreams has always been to learn English, but of course, life gets in the way. Work and family commitments distract you from achieving your goals, and before you know it, opportunities have passed by. But now is the perfect time to start something new. As life slows down, and retirement gets closer, we often have more free time. In later life, you’re more financially stable, so you have the resources to invest. Plus, people in their 50s and 60s are often very motivated, which makes them some of the best students and most dedicated language learners.

Learning a language is fun and stimulating, and it’s important to keep challenging ourselves on a day-to-day basis. But it’s not easy to master a second language when you’re older. That’s why we’re here to help. Our English for over 55’s course is perfect for those wanting to learn real English. One that’s more beneficial than a few hours of Duolingo each day!

Enjoyed this? Check out our article – 8 hidden benefits of being bilingual.

Glossary for Language Learners

 

Find the following words in the article and then write down any new ones you didn’t know.

plenty (adv): a large or sufficient amount.

slow down (pv): go slower.

workout (n): exercise.

mother tongue (n): native language.

all walks of life (exp): many different jobs or positions in society.

dubbed (adj): the speech of a movie or tv show is changed to a different language.

out of sync (adj): when two or things don’t happen together in time.

feature-length (adj): full length.

life gets in the way (exp): daily life, relationships, work and family responsibilities occupy your time.

Key

n = noun

pv = phrasal verb

adj = adjective

adv = adverb

exp = expression

Study English at Oxford House Barcelona

Interested in taking an English course at Oxford House Barcelona? Check our English for seniors course or contact us for more information.

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