Learn from your mistakes

Schools in Paris, France are encouraging children to make mistakes as part of a ‘festival of errors’.

According to intellectuals and education specialists, French children are being taught that errors are negative and this is ‘stifling’ creativity.

“A large part of the French school system is based on the idée reçue that errors are negative, when in fact it is by this very process of learning … that you make progress,” said Maëlle Lenoir, of the Association Paris Montagne.

“The French system is founded on a strict learning of knowledge, rather than on creativity or innovation. And yet it was Einstein himself who said that ‘the only sure way to avoid making mistakes is to have no new ideas’.” (Source: The Guardian)

Whilst the festival is aimed at “fostering scientific enthusiasm in under-18s”, language learners can also benefit from the idea behind the event. In a language class, it’s easier not to speak up in case you get the answer wrong and feel embarrassed. But it’s through making mistakes that we learn – whether the learning is the correct word, grammar or pronunciation.

So, don’t be afraid to make mistakes whilst learning a new language – it’s the best way to improve!