According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 60 million Americans speak a language other than English at home. But more than 231 million speak only English at home, and don’t know another language well enough to use it for communication purposes.

Education blogger Emily Jenkins, writing in February 2022, reported that “According to the Foreign Language Enrollment Survey Report in 2017 (FLE-report-June17.pdf (, only 20% of American students study foreign language in K-12 schools. Whereas in Europe, as of 2016, Belgium had the lowest percentage of students studying a language in K-12 programs, 64%, out of European countries (Pew Research Center). Europe’s median percentage of students studying a foreign language… 92%, and seven countries had 100% of students studying a foreign language.” (The Problem with the United States’ Foreign Language Programs – Emily’s Blog (

Marty Abbott, former executive director of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, said that, not only is there a language learning gap in the U.S., but it’s getting worse.

“The [enrollment] in schools is dropping,” reported Abbott. “At the K-12 level we have approximately 20 percent of students enrolled in language courses, and when you get to postsecondary level, that drops to 8.1 percent.”

The good news is, that with a variety of home-learning programs to choose from, and increasing support for homeschool families, it is becoming more possible to include foreign language training in a homeschool curriculum.


There are numerous benefits to teaching a foreign language to your homeschooler. Six of the most common are:

  1. Increased memory development,
  2. Increased focus & attention, 
  3. Enhanced brain functioning and ability to handle complex tasks,  
  4. Enhanced creative & critical thinking skills, 
  5. Increased social-emotional skills, and 
  6. Increased ability to learn about the world we live in.


The benefits to your child of learning a foreign language go well beyond the mechanics of being able to speak another language. Some of the most obvious additional benefits include:


  • Increased potential for high-end academic success
  • Increased levels of creativity
  • Increased abstract reasoning abilities


  • Increased job placement potential
  • Increased business opportunities
  • Increased earning potential
  • Increased job opportunities in Federal and State Government


  • Increased mental flexibility
  • Increased ability to switch between detailed tasks
  • Increased attention control


  • Increased understanding of other cultures
  • Increased ability to empathize with others 
  • Reduced incidence of discrimination
  • Increased ability to work with other beliefs and lifestyles. 


According to several experts, the best age for a child to begin learning a language with native-speaker proficiency is 10. At this age, children are far more susceptible to absorbing new information and better equipped for foreign language study than they are as they approach the middle school and high school experience level. 


Including a foreign language in your curriculum is no different from including any other subject. It’s all about committing and making time for it.

Realistically, there are only two ways to prepare a foreign language homeschool curriculum: adopting a pre-existing one or creating your own. No amount of homeschooling tips will change this.

To get started, you’re going to have to dive deeply into the subject to discover what needs to be taught and how to teach it.  If you’re dedicated to the idea of teaching your student a foreign language, this can be a rewarding hands-on approach that will become an important learning exercise for both you and your child.


There’s no reason for you to feel you must handle the instructional task completely on your own. It’s always good to defer to the experts when needed, and this is especially true for something as difficult as teaching and learning a foreign language. Unless you’re fluent in a language other than your own, it stands to reason that you’ll have some blind spots in your ability to teach a language subject.

One way to supplement your abilities is to find an expert foreign language tutor for your student. One-on-one private language lessons with an expert tutor will be an asset to your homeschooling experience. A great tutor will not only teach vocabulary, spelling, sentence structure and verb-tense agreement, but will expand your child’s horizons by introducing them to travel videos of the subject country, as well as teaching about the music, food, holidays, and cultural and historical aspects of that country.


“We need increasingly to be able to interact with the rest of the world, to engage with them, to be able to compete economically and diplomatically. And if you don’t have the language skills, you truly do not understand other cultures, and you’re not able to fully engage with the rest of the world. We think naively sometimes that business gets done at the business table, but it often gets done away from the business table — it gets done in social interactions, it gets done even in the hallways. And if you don’t speak the language, you can’t fully engage in those interactions.”  (SOURCE:  Marty Abbott, former executive director of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, 2018.)

NOTE:  For expert advice about foreign language software programs, contact:  Global Student Network at Homeschooling: Online Homeschool Programs, Curriculum, Courses | GSN (


Homeschooling: Online Homeschool Programs, Curriculum, Courses | GSN ( 

Foreign Language Homeschooling Guide: Resources/Curriculum (

How to Teach Foreign Language to Homeschool Teens (

6 Creative Ways to Easily Homeschool Foreign Languages – Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers (

How to Teach Foreign Language in Your Homeschool (

Homeschool Foreign Language Requirements and Curriculum (

Teaching Foreign Language In Your Homeschool | Home Educators Association Of Virginia (

Preply – Best online language tutors and classes