I understand that this post probably won’t be relevant for most of my readers. Despite this, I decided to still write it in the hopes that one day, I can inspire someone!
For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been studying the subject of raising children to be bilingual. While I don’t have any kids of my own yet, I do have two younger siblings – a five year old and an eight month old – who I can easily start teaching the Spanish language!
No, they won’t grow up being bilingual, although that would be pretty cool! I don’t know enough of the language myself yet to be able to do that … but I can do different, fun activities with them to teach them the basics. I’ve already started doing that, and I’ll be sure to talk about that in my next post on this subject!
In this post, I’d like to share with you 6 ways to make second language learning fun – these are the best tips for introducing a child to a new language!
This is for anyone who would like to teach the little ones in their life a new language, whether you’re aiming for bilingualism or a basic introduction to the language.
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoy.
1. Be positive and encouraging. Children become more confident when praised, so if you encourage their progress, however fast or slow it may be, their enjoyment of the second language will be strengthened! Keep activities positive and enjoyable; children love to have a good time.
2. Tailor to their personal interests. For example, I chose several different Spanish books from the library the other day to read to my little brother. While one of the books had caught my particular interest, he preferred another book over it and chose that one instead. I let it go so that we could have a positive experience geared toward his interests, not mine.
3. Teach them when the time is right. If they’re not in the best mood when you’re about to sit down and do an activity with them, wait for another time. Make sure that language learning is always as fun as it can be, not something they feel they have to sit through.
4. Encourage correct pronunciation, but don’t push it. Just like with a child’s first language, they won’t be able to pronounce every word correctly the first time – even several times! They will learn best through trial and error, not frequent correction. Exhibit patience and kindness.
5. Let them learn in their own way. For example, if you’re primarily singing songs in the new language with them, but they seem to get more out of looking at books written in the new language with you, read more books. Learning a new language, especially for children, has to be a fun process. It’s the easiest way for them to learn!
6. Always make it fun! Children love to have a blast! Whatever you’ve decided to do with your child, turn it into enjoyable activities for them. Kids need positive stimulation. And wouldn’t it be awesome if they looked forward to learning the new language because of how much fun you make it? That would be wonderful!
As you can see throughout these tips, the key word here is FUN! While learning a new language can often be a tedious process, it can also be an awesome journey for children. Be on the lookout for my next post, which will be about possible things you can do to teach your child a new language!
Thanks for reading!
Do YOU have any suggestions or questions about teaching children a second language? Leave them down below!