More people than ever before are realizing the benefits of teaching their children as second language. If you happen to be bilingual, this is a great beginning for your children as they can learn how to speak a second language. If you are in America, learning a second language is not always something that is mandatory or necessary for people to find jobs or interact with neighboring states. However, if you are in Europe, or if you would like to get a job in a different country, having a second language can make you much more valuable to employers. At the very least, if your kids know a second language, or if you are trying to teach children in a classroom how to speak something other than English, here are some tips that you can use.
Benefits Of Learning A Second Language
The primary benefit to learning a second language is that very few people actually are fluent in more than one language. For example, if you are living in Great Britain, or in the United States, you can likely get by by simply knowing English when you are applying for a job. The same is true for Australia, New Zealand, or any other place where English is the primary language. However, if you are in a European country such as Germany, France, or Spain, having some knowledge of the neighboring countries and the language that they speak can help you as you travel about. Finally, if you do know a second language and you are a teacher, this can be very beneficial. Bilingual teachers are in demand and you can earn a significant amount of money as a result of having this additional skill.
How To Teach Your Own Kids A Second Language
If you have children, and you would like them to learn a second language that you already speak, teaching them another language is as simple as using your primary language half the time, and the secondary language the other half. By switching this up, kids can quickly learn how to speak both languages as if it is perfectly normal. This will make them bilingual, at least verbally, and then they can later learn how to write this language which can help them in life.
How To Teach A Second Language To Kids In A Classroom
If you are a teacher, this becomes a little more difficult than simply teaching your own kids how to speak a second language. You can usually begin with your own children at a very early age, a time when learning a second language is much easier. Once a language has become solidified in their minds as the way that they should speak, a secondary language is much harder to learn. In a classroom, you will begin with a combination of translating one language to the other on paper, and also introduce the verbal component directly after. At some point, you will want to have the kids only speak in the other language once they have a basic vocabulary that they can use to have a simple conversation. This will allow them to become more fluent, allowing them to learn how to read and write in that second language much more easily by sounding everything out.
See also: How Children Learn a Second Language
Advanced Techniques For Teaching Second Languages
A good example of how to use this advanced technique can be presented in a classroom where the primary language is English and the secondary language is Spanish. You will want to group your kids into groups of four children each, regardless of their age. There will be two pairs of children that will work together as a team, and they will do assignments and have conversations with the other two kids in their group. Once they are able to hold a conversation, or complete simple assignments together, you can then make a competition between groups. This will shift everything into four kids interacting with the others, asking questions, and also telling stories that they will write out in the secondary language. By creating a competitive format that is fun, the kids will learn much more quickly within a group setting. This same strategy can be used if you have at least two children at home that you are trying to teach a second language, specifically reading and writing which can be the most difficult. As long as the assignments that you are giving them are fun, and also use pictures to connect imagery with both spoken and written words, they can learn at an exponential pace.
Whether you are trying to teach your own kids how to speak a second language, or if you are a teacher in charge of multiple children, by using this simple grouping technique, you can accelerate the process of learning a second language. Once the kids become verbally fluent, this will help them sound out words that they are reading and writing, helping them to become much more proficient in the second language. This will work for parents and teachers alike, strategies that will prepare kids to go out into the world with this skill that is in such high demand today.