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How to Introduce Children to a Foreign Language

 

For children, foreign language learning is an important aspect of education. Learning a foreign language is useful when traveling, and it helps kids with their verbals skills. Kids who learn a foreign language do better on the SAT verbal sections, and they tend to make higher grades. Introducing children to a foreign language can be done in a number of ways.

Experiencing Languages in Person

If you know someone who speaks a foreign language fluently, this can be a great way for children to hear the language. Spending time with foreign language speakers is a semi-emersion tactic that can help children to experience a language being used in an everyday setting. If you don't know any foreign language speakers, going to a foreign restaurant can often create the same experience. Learning a few words of the language and using them in the restaurant with the wait staff is a practical way to practice pronunciation and word memorization. 

Use Post-Its with Foreign Words

Writing down the word for any ordinary household object and taping to that object means that the children will see it often and over time will learn to associate the word and the object. Do this with a large number of items, and the exposure to the new language will be constant.

Play Language CDs

Reading a foreign language is one way to grasp it, but listening to it regularly gives children the repetition they need to learn the correct pronunciation of the words. Language CDs for children or for adults can be played in the car or in the home to help kids expand their vocabularies.

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