For a long time, many people have made the assumption that bilingualism is a productive way to promote creativity in young minds. The ability to learn and master a new language helps students of all ages to expand their minds and to think more creatively for a wide range of tasks or projects. Across our country, more and more child development centers are utilizing the beneficial versatility of bilingual classes. In Texas, for example, programs such as immersion preschools are opening to enrich the lives of young students who are eager to learn and excel in their education. Crossing Borders Preschool has proudly provided top-quality language immersion programs to Houston children, delivering a proven curriculum for children between the ages of 18 months and five years old. Our early childhood development program is tailored to help young minds adapt and expand for the challenges of learning a new language while also preparing students academically for the future.
Our bilingual preschool aims to provide the many benefits that come with mastering a second or even third language. Today’s focus will center around creativity and the results of recent studies that reinforce the concept that bilingualism has a direct benefit on creative thinking. When done, be sure to reach out to our language immersion preschool to learn more about our quality programs!
Comparing Levels of Creativity
In order to measure creativity, researchers had to create a system that directly compares the results of individuals who are proficient at being bilingual and those who are low-proficient individuals. The hypothesis of one study posited that bilingual children would perform better with convergent thinking tasks while unilingual individuals would fare better with divergent thinking tasks.
- Convergent thinking is the process of determining a concrete solution for a problem. It may be helpful to think of this approach as a versatile approach to a question or issue that relies on tried and true techniques and facts to determine the best solution possible. Convergent thinkers utilize a very clear approach to determining right and wrong with no ambiguity in between.
- Divergent thinking focuses on creativity, where multiple solutions can be applied to a problem. Instead of concrete procedures to solve the problem, divergent thinkers instead seek to find new procedures to solve the issue at hand. This approach allows for an unlimited number of answers to a problem, with each one offering varying degrees of success. While a convergent student may excel at a standardized test, divergent thinkers tend to vacillate and contemplate every answer, hampering their performance.
Studies across the globe have focused on trying to define creativity and measure it perform an effective test that illuminates whether or not bilingual children excel in creative thinking.
One regularly used system that helps in measuring cognitive abilities is the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (TTCT). These tests have long relied measuring divergent thinking to see how students of different ages and language capacities compare in terms of fluency, flexibility, originality, and elaboration. In many studies, bilingual participants outscored their counterparts in all four categories.
Being able to define and measure creativity is difficult, yet the scientific community has worked hard to establish a link between being a creative thinker and learning a second language. Next time, we’ll continue this topic by discussing a few of the reasons given behind why bilingual speakers excel in the TTCT tests.
Cross Borders Preschool is proud to offer the best programs for young learners in Texas. Our language immersion programs give Houston students the ability to thrive with bilingualism, supplying them with the tools needed for a lifetime of achievement. Contact us today to learn more or to enroll your little star in our bilingual preschool!