In our immersion programme we don’t use Dutch as an intermediate language. Any new word is directly connected to the object or concept it stands for, or it is explained in English. This practice is corroborated by recent research. Jeanet van Hell investigates learning and teaching English at Dutch primary schools.
A remarkable finding: a second language can be mastered at any age. However, the pronunciation will be perfect only when learnt at early childhood from a native speaker.
Read about Van Hell’s research at http://www.ru.nl/wetenschapsagenda/@774053/laat-native-speaker/
MRI-scan of the brain
If someone makes a snide comment on tto you could answer with this quote:
Plasticity can also be observed in the brains of bilinguals (Mechelli et al., 2004). It looks like learning a second language is possible through functional changes in the brain: the left inferior parietal cortex is larger in bilingual brains than in monolingual brains.
Find the complete article here.