Top Tips for Helping Your Child Learn a New Language


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As parents, we hope to help our children perform well at school as best we can, by helping out with homework, encouraging participation in extra-curricular endeavours, and building a good rapport with the school community. However, it’s not easy to help your child with every single one of their subjects, especially if you’re not clued up on it yourself. Languages is one example, as for those of us who are not fluent in multiple languages, it can be difficult to help our children practise them at home. You’ll be pleased to know that it is possible, and a pre-prep school in Hertfordshire has prepared the following tips to help get you started.

You don’t have to be able to speak a foreign language in order to help your child learn one. Allowing them to label items and furniture around the house, like the fridge and front door, is a great place to start. Constant exposure to these nouns will help them develop their vocabulary, which they can eventually incorporate into sentences.

Flash cards are also great. Encourage your child to write the English word on one side and the foreign alternative on the other. Hold up the flashcard for them so that they can only see one side and ask them to tell you what the translation is. If you can’t be there to help your child with this activity due to work or other commitments, perhaps suggest that they invite a study buddy round to do it with them instead.

Another way to support your child with their language learning is to watching a foreign film with them, with English subtitles. Having you there will help them feel supported and it will help them become more familiar with the conversational side of the language. You could also make a music playlist of foreign songs that you can play on car journeys.

Encourage your child to practise their language little and often. If they spend 2 hours revising on a Monday evening, they will have forgotten much of what they learned by the following Monday. 15 minutes a day would be far more productive. Little and often is the best motto!

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