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The age of children studying abroad is notably falling, such as elementary school students who go abroad for a short stay, or parents studying abroad with their preschool infants. Some schools teach English to children of less than one year old with a babysitter.


Tatsuhiko Hoshino, executive secretary of the Japan Association of Overseas Studies, which comprises 66 business operators that provide study abroad services. Children are studying abroad at younger ages, due partly to growing interest in English education, with some parents accompanying their children on their overseas stay.

© Yomiuri Shimbun

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I see this as a simple money grab. However, I can agree that babies being around a language consistently helps them learn the language faster. But paying someone to talk to your 1 year old once per week is a waste of money.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Either way once the JTEs get hold of them, all progress will be lost in the abyss of flawed, dull, drill work with little application and even less meaning. The great demotivators await. Keeping kids away from damage makers would actually be the key to real progress.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The flip side of this is that older students aren’t going overseas anymore. University students have lost a lot of interest in doing so compared to a few years ago and are doing so much less.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Is this trend rich people pushing/pampering kids harder at a younger age?

As rainyday says, the conventional pattern, older, middle-class kids going seems to be in retreat. Given that eikaiwa schools used to have TV ads in prime time and would occupy a large percentage of the printed ads on trains, it's hard to see "growing interest in English education" in Japan in 2019.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

This is , I think, one good effect of globalization. I honestly feel jealous about reading this since foreign exchange and study abroad programs were hardly unheard of during my elementary and high school days during the early 2000's since kids exposed to foreign cultures overseas would have a wider perspective in life and pick up languages easier. However, it would also go both ways as a kid might also pick up values that don't necessarily fit in with their home country

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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