Knowing a second language is not just about grades or finding your way around when traveling. Today, it can greatly increase your career opportunities, improve your chances of getting various scholarships, and help you understand other cultures better. All of these things can improve your lifestyle – but only if you know a second language well enough. And for that, you need to start learning it early. So, here are five tips on how to make learning a second language easier and more fun for your child.
Watch a TV show or movie in another language
Depending on how young your child is, you can find a good TV show, cartoons, or movies for kids in any language. If they know how to read, you can also watch movies with subtitles – but for young kids, cartoons can do wonders. This is one of the easiest, fastest, and most fun ways to master the vocabulary of any language; with every word, they’d also get a context, which would make it easier for them to figure out the meaning of unknown words. Moreover, it’s also fun, as they’d simply be doing something they already enjoy, just in another language.
Sign them up for language classes
Even though movies and TV shows are great for mastering vocabulary, knowing grammar is just as important. This is why you should choose a good education center for your child, as teaching phonics for kids requires special skills. You want your kid to be surrounded by patient and professional educators who know how to keep your child engaged and entertained, so your child can reach their full potential. So, do your research, ask other parents for suggestions, and you should have no trouble finding the right school for your child.
Downloads apps and games
In this day and age, you can’t really run away from technology – unless you choose to live in the woods away from civilization. Therefore, since it is a part of our daily life, you might as well use it to your favor. There are many great apps for learning languages, Duolingo being just one of them. And since kids have a short attention span, using apps and various interactive games can help them learn their second language much faster. You can download the apps to your tablet, and you can spend some time every day practicing with your child.
Use flashcards throughout the day
Memorising is an important part of learning languages. So, if your child likes games that test their memory, you should try using flashcards to help them learn faster. You can write down the most important words and phrases on the cards, or you can use cards with images, and keep them in your pocket. You can show them to your kid one at a time during your daily walk, when taking a break from homework, after dinner, etc. It’s a fun way to boost their memory and keep them thinking about the language.
Find opportunities to practice the language
It’s not enough to just listen to the language – if you want your child to learn it, they also need to use it. For example, you can hire a professional tutor to practice communication with them, or you can even host an exchange student for one semester. You can join a local language club or you can travel more to the countries where the language is spoken. It might also be a good idea to find your child a pen-pal from a foreign country so they can practice their writing skills too. One of the best things about this suggestion is also the fact that talking to a native speaker can help your child learn more about not just the language but also the culture.
To sum up, if you want your child to master a second language in time to reap all the benefits of knowing it, they should start learning it while they are still young. Of course, learning a second language is not easy, and it won’t happen overnight, but if you start early, there will be plenty of time for your kid to learn it. With all that in mind, consider the listed tips, try them with your child, and they will be speaking their second language in no time