5 Tips to Encourage Language Learning and Have Fun the Same Time for Kids
To expose to a larger vocabulary, kids need many opportunities to apply what they have learnt in their language classes. The normal language class whether running in a school or a weekend class often have issues in too rigid teaching methods, boring written exercises, or lack of opportunities for kids to use the language beyond the class. Practicing a fresh phrase or a word may also be intimidating, specifically for kids with a higher effective filtration system or negative psychological factors that may hinder language learning.
A good way to give kids meaningful opportunities to use their learning and turning their negative feeling to positive one is to make learning fun! Language teachers or parents alike will find that using activities that produces learning participating and fun, kids are more likely to participate and plunge in. Having a great time while learning also helps kids retain language skills better because the experience is exciting and easy to store in their memory.
Learn language with songs
Almost all kids are in some way encouraged to sing a foreign song at some stage. Music is also on the top of the list of fun-way-of-learning-a-language. To find artists who sing in the language your kids are learning, check out the playlists on spotify, Apple Music or the type of music channel your kids favor. Type the name of your chosen language + music (e.g. Spanish music) and you should get a variety of songs or playlists for you to choose from.
To make the most of it, try to listen actively: let your kis listen to it a few times, then find lyrics andd look up the meaning. Remember, they DON’T have to understand every single word of song! While the song sinks in, your kids will sing along with the language, eventually the actually meaning will register in their language skill memory. This will a slow and fun process, tell you kids they don’t have to strugle just enjoy the sing-along and it will become nature after they have mastered the song completely!
Learn language with karaoke
You might want to laugh, karaoke – really? Yes, learn to sing is different than sing-along with karaoke, as if you are singing to an audience. This will not only develop your kids’ pronunciation skills, get them focus on getting the sounds as closer to the original singers as possible, but also, it will improve kids’ confidence as if they are singing for real, a show or on TV if you want to push it a little.
But make the step smaller at a time, first let your kids to practise on his own, while there’s no one in the house, or let them do it in the shower. When they are fully confident, you can suggest you as a parent to be his first audience, then if it goes really well, they can record themselves and upload onto YouTube or sing in front of the whole family and friends!
There are tons of kids recording themselves singing on YouTube, this can also be used to encourage your kids to act up! If other kids can do it, why not you?!!!
A lot of YouTube video provide the karaoke practice as well, with lyrics displaying with the music. It saves you buying own karaoke equipment for your kids. Give it a try, you might be surprise at how effective it is!
Learn nursery rhymes
‘Round and round the garden, like a teddy bear, one step, two steps, tickly under there!’ A rhyme like this is easy to remember and stick in your kids head like magic! Every language will have similiar rhymes and they are easy to pronounce and easy to remember!
Only thing to take notice is to choose the one with vocabulary still relevant to modern days. You don’t want kids to learn the words that are no longer mean the same thing from the rhyme.
Ask language teachers to give some suggestions, this will give you an accurate selection to learn from. Your kids will find fun in learning which is the main goal to achieve. The happier they find in learning language, the more they would like to learrn!
Find a language meetup group
Somewhere in your area, there are most likely groups of kids and parents learning the same language like you are. Search for them in your local library, community centre or even large supermarket notice board. You will likely to find some information promoting the group.
In the North West England of UK where I live, not only you can find local language learning groups in the above local centres, you can find these groups via Facebook, Eventbrite and there’s even an App called ‘Meetup’, most of these are free. If not, they do not charge a fortune for you to attend the regular meetup group.
You can go along with your kids to these language learning groups, it provides the opportunities to meet new friends, and practise speaking in real life, which is the most important thing for language learning. If you let your kids go on their own, please make sure you are certain the group is suitable to your kids’ age, i.e. they are supervised by adults with certain security clearance.
Learn language by watching TV
Watching TV is not always a waste of time when it comes learning. So pause our keen brain for a moment and just put some rubbish TV on! The mass picture and conversation does not have to make sense, as long as your kids are having fun in it, they will pick up a few phases!
Particularly with the top-performance acting, some language conversation is very simple to understand. Kids can start to imitate them straightforward and having a laugh the same time! Some Reality TV programs provide a really good opportunity for your kids to practise hearing skills and pick up slang words which are used more frequent than the language phrases they learn from a book.
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