5 secrets you need to know to help your child learn English at home!
I get it! The pandemic has put us all under a lot of stress. As if things weren’t hard enough before the pandemic – now we’re at a different level of stress. You gotta keep making money, stay healthy, make sure your family are healthy and harmonious. And of course there’s that nagging feeling that you need to give your kids the skills they need for the future. And the only skill they seem to have really mastered is spacing out on their digital device! It’s enough to drive you crazy!
Well, in this article I’m going to give you the 5 secrets you need to know to help your child learn English! It’s gonna bring a smile to yourself, make you feel relaxed & get you in the mood to boogie!
The verdict is in – learning English is one of the most important skills that your child needs for their future. Without English, your child will be unable to communicate with others. They won’t be able to get the best jobs and they won’t be able to develop their business. Their social contacts will be limited and they will find it so difficult to navigate the future. You gotta get them to learn English! And you gotta do it fast…
But who has the time to help their children learn English?! It’s hard enough getting them to eat good food, finish their school work, get them to shower, unplug them from their digital devices and teach them simple manners! Well, there’s no need to be confused – here are 5 simple tips for helping kids to learn English at home.
1. Get them to practice English frequently
One of the keys to success in achieving goals is to practice a lot. Einstein didn’t become a genius by lazing around and playing games on his i-phone. And Steve Jobs didn’t create the i-phone by lazing around playing games on his Samsung Android. And this goes for your kids too. One of the best ways to help them get better at English is by getting them to do English frequently. It doesn’t have to be long, it just needs to be consistent. We have seen amazing results with kids who take our lessons just twice a week. Within a few years, these kids have amazing English skills. It’s like they just picked it up magically. So just imagine is you spend a little time on English every day with your kids.
Hint: of course, you have to make sure that the practice they are doing is quality language practice – it’s no good getting them to practice the wrong stuff. This just makes them lose confidence and learn bad habits that are difficult to unlearn later.
2. Make learning English fun
Making children happy when learning something is not easy. To get around this, involving them in games is the best way to teach them English so that children are interested and happy to do it. Games that can be done, for example, by playing scrabble, games on smartphones, and other games in English and according to the child’s age. But understand that you have to find a balance between fun and discipline. You need to discipline to help them practice every day but you gotta keep it fun and interesting to keep them engaged. When kids are happy, dopamine is released in their brains and they will remember the stuff they are learning with more ease.
Choose topics or things that they are passionate about and bring English into the activity. For example, if they enjoy singing, listening to songs, or reading books then get them to sing or listen to music in English and read books in English. You need to explore children’s interests so that they know what games, songs, or activities will motivate them to learn.
3. Don’t get hung up on grammar
Grammar mistakes are a common thing that many people do, especially children who are just learning. As a parent, you don’t need to keep fixing these mistakes – let your children make small mistakes so that children dare to speak, express themselves and don’t lose interest in learning English. Focus on fluency and flow and enjoyment and leave fixing language problems to experts and teachers. Good teachers should know exactly how to fix simple language problems (bad teachers will create even more problems – stay away from them! Haha).
4. Use everyday situations as opportunities to learn new things
Take advantage of everyday situations by describing them in English . This is because children become used to talking about any topic with speaking practice in every situation and daily conditions.
Parents should always encourage children to communicate in English by introducing objects around them from the start, for example, when they invite children to cook together, parents can explain to children about the function of the kitchen utensils around them with short sentences so that they are easy to remember. This will speed up the child to be fluent and not shy about speaking anymore. If you see English writing on packaging, use that. If you see English on toys or games, use these. English is everywhere, take advantage of this.
5. Speak to them in English
One of the best ways to get them to practice English is to speak to them in English. This makes them comfortable and helps build their confidence. Don’t worry about making mistakes, just focus on fluency at this stage. Of course, if you can’t speak English…then you should seriously consider taking an English course yourself. After all, you want to be able to communicate in English too! This is the number one skill of the future.
Hint: pay attention to their moods and physical condition & pay attention to your own mood too. If they are tired and cranky (or if you are tired and cranky), it’s going to be much harder to make this work. You don’t have to always stick to a routine, there are times when parents are also flexible and give them rest days.
If you want to help your child gain confidence and fluency in English…
Getting your kids to learn English from a young age is so much better than waiting until they are teenagers! At an early age, children’s brains develop much more than at any other time in life and this a long-term impact on a child’s ability to learn and succeed. You can do a lot to help with your child’s learning process at home. If you would like our help to really take your child to the next level, make sure to contact us to see how we can help.
Our goal is to help your child become fluent and confident in English! So I wish you the very best in your endeavours to make this happen.
Anthony McCormick, IELC Managing Director