At a younger age, human minds work more efficiently and have enhanced memory levels. The brain cognitive functions start declining with age. It is said that “Hit the Iron When it is Hot”. Keeping this in consideration, younger age is the right time to teach your child a second language, if you want to make them bilingual. In view of the many advantages of being bilingual, a subsequent number of parents are teaching their children a second language nowadays. In order to make this process easier, one must keep in mind the following five golden rules.
Early Introduction of the Second Language
In order to teach your kid a foreign language, the first rule is to begin as early as possible. Begin from today, regardless of the age of your child. As a matter of fact, infants can learn a new language quickly when having exposure to it since birth. Most importantly, it becomes difficult to get a grasp over a second language as your child age. However, it doesn’t diminish the ability to learn a foreign language but learning doesn’t appear as easy as it could be at a younger age. Therefore, the introduction of a second language at an early age is essential in order to reap its maximum benefits.
Pay Heed to Strengthening the Basics
Laying the foundation of a building by strengthening its base is critical to support the later portions. Same is the case with teaching anything new. If you don’t strengthen the basics while teaching a new language, the advanced learning is not going to favor your child later. Even the beginning of the learning process with just listening to relevant stories can work for your child. For example, in the case of learning Spanish, listening to Spanish alphabet sounds will improve the pronunciation of your child. In this way, he/she will be able to recognize the words by just listening to them, which will be helpful for further learning.
To serve this purpose, you can let them to differentiate between colors or teach them counting. You can also sing songs in their respective languages to add fun in the entire learning process. In fact, listening to music is amongst the most result-yielding ways of teaching your kid a foreign language.
Additionally, language learning becomes an enjoyable task when you engage your child in his favorite activity. This is for the reason that kids learn in a better manner, when they have some fun activity to do. You can add activities such as drawing or playing different games to allow the introduction of new phrases and vocabulary.
Make the most of all the Available Resources
You can get benefits from numerous relevant available resources when teaching your child a exotic language. To serve this purpose, you can make online searches e.g., free language learning apps, online books in a foreign language, relevant activities and games etc. Even watching favorite shows or cartoons on television or online in a foreign language can be advantageous for your kid.
Adding to it, you can also get your child some relevant games and toys that could speak in the target language. This can be one of the best and most enjoyable ways of learning a new language for your child.
Look for Some Support Outside
If you don’t know how to speak in a second language, seek the support of an outsider. You MUST learn it first to teach it to your budding mind. Other than that, you can find sessions regarding foreign languages arranged in your vicinity. Taking lessons in the target language from a local expert will favor you to a greater extent as well.
Let Your Child Practice the Second Language
A wise person once said that “Practice Makes a Man Perfect”. So, your child can master a second language only when he keeps on practicing it on a daily basis. To make practice a part of his everyday routine, it is essential to provide your child with a supportive surrounding. Find and let your child interact with one or a few native speakers to nourish his conversational skills. Bear in mind that only studying from books or listening to relevant material is not going to do the trick. In fact, language learning asks for having strong verbal skills to get complete command over a second language.
You can also take advantage of social media as you can find your kid a foreign friend, who is well-versed in the target language. Interacting with such friend more and more will sufficiently polish both verbal as well as written skills of your child.
Above all, don’t take any step hastily since learning a new language is a time-consuming process. This simply means that effective learning asks for considerable time and patience too. Introducing a new word each day will be enough for the little learner. Although your child is capable of absorbing a whole heap of the new lesson, believing in quality is what actually matters the most.
This article was written by Lara Smith. She has worked for Wall Street English for 20 years. After studying at Stanford University and subsequently doing a CELTA course, she began her career in teaching. She is obsessed with languages and currently writes blogs at https://www.mimicmethod.com/.