It’s common knowledge that the earlier you start learning a foreign language, the more chances you have of getting closer to the native level. However, fast results aren’t the only stimuli for English tutors to teach young students. We asked our teachers to share their experiences.
Ellen, Novakid teacher – Play and Rule!
Kids are open to any kind of modern gamification technics. Themes that make adults slip into procrastination, kids conquer at full speed. The trick is to serve this sour candy in the prettiest wrapping you can find. Stuck on irregular verbs? Okay, there are plenty of interactive games to help you: from team quizzes to mnemonic tables and catchy songs.
Kristina, Novakid teacher – Mistakes Are Natural
Kids who haven’t been introduced to the school grading system and those who don’t go to school yet deal with mistakes much better. Thus, they engage in conversations more easily and respond to communicative language teaching. With this approach, new words and skills grow like a snowball: the more you talk, the bigger your vocabulary gets.
Garret, Novakid teacher – Say No to Stereotypes
“I’m a full-grown man/woman, I’m too embarrassed to start learning the language from scratch!” Luckily, kids don’t suffer from such self-inflicted ageist stereotypes. At this point in their lives, anything they do, they do it for the first time. They simply do it! Undeterred by potential failure, because in any case, they’ll get their “Well done guys, good work today.”
Mariska, Novakid teacher – English as First Language
Creating a new language environment for small kids is extremely rewarding. You can literally watch their second language becoming as important to them as their first one. If a child starts learning a second language before they turn 4, they can become bilingual. Family support is essential, of course. In early childhood, languages are learned very naturally and almost unconsciously.
Edgar, Novakid teacher – Let There Be Experiments!
Kids easily adapt to any teaching technique. This gives a tutor enough space to experiment with new teaching tools keeping students’ personalities in mind. It’s also easier for them to reach interim goals like watching an episode of their favourite cartoon in the original language. It inspires them to persevere.
Dany, Novakid teacher – Curiosity Saves the Cat
Kids are naturally very curious, thus easy to motivate. Some really like singing (it may be imperfect!), and they are eager to learn English through songs. Others are really into Among Us and can spend hours studying the language if the education program integrates their favourite video game into the process. The teacher’s job is to find a key to a student, and the rest will go like clockwork.
What About Family Classes?
We understand the fears and doubts of our adult students who make the decision to pick up a new language. However, there’s nothing impossible in their way. Teachers find family classes to be quite successful and fruitful. They run on team magic, thus learning a language becomes a fun activity. Fear and embarrassment dissolve, giving way to excitement.
Family classes are also a great opportunity for regular language practice when parents and their kids work in a bilingual environment at home, where they can use new vocabulary to discuss day-to-day life. They can make preparations for family celebrations, discuss a film (they might watch it in the original!), plan their weekends and family trips – all in English.