6 Ways To Make Second Language Learning Fun

6 Ways To Make Second Language Learning Fun

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.

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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.

Related Post: 5 Important Language Learning Tips

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!

— Maggie

22 thoughts on “6 Ways To Make Second Language Learning Fun

  1. First off I’d like to say that you do inspire someone, me, everyday 🙂 Second, this is great advice and spot on. It is tailored to promote the best learning experience for the student and the teacher. And it’s geared for success and not failure. Well written, easy to understand and follow. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. As early in life as possible! Whether that’s as an infant or a preschooler, the younger, the better. Babies under the age of ten months are able to pick up on differing sounds between languages much easier than someone who is older. Young children have a stronger memory, so if they start learning young, they’ll have an easier time recalling certain sounds, word placement, and pronunciation. 🙂 However, language retention differs from child to child.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m in the same boat – no kids yet, but definitely researching raising children to be bilingual. This post is full of great reminders! It’s easy to want to push grammar or get caught up in enforcing correct pronuniation, but you’re right… if it’s not fun, they won’t learn!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Yes, it’s crucial for children to have a good time, because then they’ll remember more and enjoy themselves. 🙂 Thanks for reading! Best of luck on your own language learning journey.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great advice! When you teach a child at a young age, they can grasp the sounds clearly. Talking to them in another language from the womb also strengthens their understanding.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Yes, definitely – I had no idea until recently how much babies can learn and begin to comprehend the language/s spoken around them! They can pick up on difficult sounds that are harder for anyone older to hear or speak.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Maggie
    We brought our two daughters up to be bilingual. (Spanish/English).
    I feel as if it was one of the best gifts we could have given.
    Also recent research is proving all the advantages a second language has for our brain process.
    Children love learning …and your siblings will love learning and repeating . Making another language seem natural and fun , as you say, is the key!
    Regards. Marie.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Marie, that is so wonderful! Bilingualism truly is a gift, whether it’s taught young or achieved later in life. I’m looking forward to teaching my little siblings Spanish (as well as myself!). Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I read that very young children who are introduced to a second language never fully excel at either. Have you read any research on the topic? I’d like to teach my youngest grandson a second language but that worries me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I have read a bit about that. All children are different, but language development is hardly ever hindered by exposure to two languages. Even if the secondary language isn’t spoken around them that much, frequent interactions in that language (as much as you can offer) is the most important thing. For example, I’m teaching Samuel new Spanish words here and there right now so that his knowledge of and comfortability with the language will strengthen as he gets older. I’m not very familiar with how to raise a child to be fully bilingual as I don’t know enough Spanish myself yet, but when it comes to casual learning, there’s nothing to worry about. 🙂 Hope that helps!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Music is a big way to make learning fun! Using a variety of songs from different Spanish speaking countries also increases cultural knowledge and colloquial vocabulary.

    Like

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