We live in a rapidly shrinking world – the advent of the internet has allowed us to learn more about other cultures more quickly than ever before. Increasing numbers of international businesses are working remotely and so now more than ever, learning a second or even a third language is a must.
To encourage your child to learn a new language, you must first pique their curiosity. This can be done from a very young age as the leaders of this junior school in Buckingham believe.
Even if you cannot physically travel to other countries, it is important to show your child how big the world is and to discuss the fact that people in other countries speak in different languages. Show your toddler or pre-schooler a globe; point out your own country and then some others. Underpin this by finding educational videos online; show them the way in which people in those countries live, the way they speak and other aspects of their cultures. Once a child knows they can learn a different language, they’re usually very keen to try.
There are many learning tools for children to learn a new language. Video is a good way to begin. Watching cartoons in different languages will expose your child to the sounds and pronunciation of the words. It’s also fun to try to speak along with the characters.
Listening carefully to your child’s cues, you will soon work out which languages most excite them. Help them to learn all the can about this language. If you cannot travel to the country in person, make a plan with your child for the time when it is possible. You can plan travel by looking at the different transportations in the country you want to visit – and also discuss famous landmarks with them.
Ask your child questions like “Where will we go out to eat?” and have your child order from a made-up menu in the language they are trying to learn. Above all, show interest in your child’s passion for language. This will go a long way towards encouraging them to continue in their endeavours.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.