Many of the parents at Busuu have recently taken on an extra role: homeschooler. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, kids are now back home and still in need of a full-time education.
So, naturally, there has been a lot of language expert-led discussion about language learning for kids at home: what can parents do to help their kids pick up words and phrases? And what online resources are out there to lighten the load of time-stretched parents, managing a full-time job and their child’s home education?
Here’s everything you need to know about children learning languages at home.
Help your child learn a language at home with these 5 top tips
While we’ve cracked the best way for adults to learn languages like French, Spanish and German, when it comes to teaching kids at home, a different set of guidelines must apply.
1. Make it fun
Adults tend to think that language learning for kids may present a huge challenge, and while it does take a lot of effort, this won’t be something that your kids are aware of.
Getting children, bored at home, to learn through fun, games and activities can mean that, short term, they maintain a productive routine, and, long term, that they grow up with a more positive attitude to other languages and the process of learning. It’s a win-win!
2. Keep things moving
Kids have much shorter attention spans than adults, and it’s important to make sure children stuck at home learn languages in a variety of ways. In other words, the language games they play should be short, so they don’t get bored.
This is because children don’t understand the logic of hard work paying off in the future, so it has to be engaging in the present!
3. Sing songs and tell stories
Children love to sing and hear magical tales, so stories and songs – anything from nursery rhymes to modern Spanish songs – are some of the best ways to help young people become familiar with the rhythm and tone of a new language. This can have a big impact on both listening skills and on their pronunciation.
It also helps children remember ‘chunks’ of language – phrases and sentences that help them become aware of the structures of language, without having to focus on grammar.
4. Watch Busuu’s #KeepKidsLearning YouTube content
We at Busuu know how much time and effort it takes to help keep your kids engaged at home – so we’re here to help.
Busuu is on a mission to #KeepKidsLearning during the coronavirus outbreak. We’re doing this by offering kids everywhere FREE access to English, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese lessons on YouTube, taught by our qualified teachers. We have different lessons for different age groups – so there’s something for everyone!
Interested in getting your kids involved? Check out our #KeepKidsLearning lessons.
5. Use the Busuu app to learn with your kids
If you’re looking for another way to help your child learn English, Spanish, French, Japanese, or a possible eight other useful languages, we also have a great app to help.
Busuu’s app, (accessible on Android, iOS and web – i.e., your computers at home!) is made up of fun and engaging learning units, each helping adults and children alike learn useful vocabulary and more.
And since learning is most fun when it’s interactive, for those of you getting inventive with your homeschooling, why not use the words from each unit to make a song or a game to play with your child at home?
The most important thing, though, whatever your child’s age, is to make sure they love learning.
Here at Busuu, we aim to make learning fun and engaging for all, whether you’re four or one 104! Start learning a language with us here.