The Education Blog

Insight News 20th May, 2020

Learning from home – Languages!

Our top tips and resources for learning languages from home with Primary children

If you could go anywhere in the world… where would it be?

We all have to stay at home – but that doesn’t mean we can’t bring the world to us! Learning languages is a fantastic way to experience other cultures, and is an incredibly useful skill to learn early in life.

Here are some language learning activities you can do from home…

FOREIGN LANGUAGE BEDTIME STORIES

Do your children have a favourite bedtime story they know almost by-heart? Try finding it in a different language to read aloud! This could help them pick up sentence structures, or begin to recognise words in another language.

 

TV WITH A TWIST

Does your child have a favourite TV show? The beauty of Netflix is that you can change the audio and subtitles to different languages. This is a great way to learn if your child already knows the characters or story lines. For instance, Pocoyo is also available in Spanish, French, and Mandarin. Language Learning at Home put together a great list of other language learning suggestions on Netflix.

 

JE JOUE DE LA MUSIQUE !

A brilliant way for your child to experience another country’s culture and learn some new vocabulary is to listen to their music and look up the lyrics. Some great, child-friendly songs to listen to to practice different vocabulary and grammar:

  • Joe Dassin – Les Champs-Elysées – Here’s a lyric video in both French and English
  • Juanes – A Dios Le Pido (Great for practising the subjunctive and reflexive verbs in Spanish)
  • Andrea Bocelli – Con Te Partirò (A beautiful song which is also useful for practising the future tense in Italian)

PHONE A FRIEND

Do you have a friend or relative who lives in another country with a different language? Teach your children ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ in that language, and give them a call. See how many words they can pick up, and put post-it notes of those words around the house to recall later.

 

HAVE A FOREIGN LANGUAGE AND CULTURE NIGHT

Why not have a themed night where you adopt another country’s language, food and dress? This is the perfect opportunity to try a new recipe (or order in some tasty food) and learn some new vocabulary, as well as experience a new culture.

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.

Nelson Mandela

LINK TO LIFE:

Language learning doesn’t have to be time-consuming! Adding phrases to your everyday routine is a quick and easy way to keep your children learning – try replacing ‘good morning’ or ‘good night’ with a new language with your children. You’ll be amazed at how quickly they pick it up!

GREAT ACTIVITIES AND RESOURCES FOR PARENTS

There are a huge number of resources out there to make home-learning more efficient and entertaining.

Here are some suggestions you might like to take a look at today:

Language Transfer

This website has some amazing audio tracks for language learning – their methods are innovative, and can help you think about languages in a new way!

Learn more

Hello World

Lots of games, worksheets, and puzzles in different languages for children!

Learn more

DuoLingo

This app and website are brilliant for beginners, and new courses and languages are added regularly!

Learn more

Memrise

This site is great for learners who love mnemonics, and want to expand their vocabulary!

Learn more

WordReference

A handy website to find dictionary translations of words and phrases in many languages in a flash. Download the app to the family tablet or to your phone, and search some words together.

Discover more

The curious language of British schools and universities

British schools and universities are teeming with curious words and phrases that have emerged and developed over hundreds of years. In case you are struggling to find the ‘plodge’ or wondering who a ‘beak’ is, here is a little jargon glossary to give you a helping hand…

Creating creativity: is arts education elitist?

Bella Audsley discusses the conversation around arts education and elitism.

How can you and your children make the best use of this time at home?

Resource suggestions, thoughts and tips from our 11+ Consultant, Rhiannon Drake

Get in touch

We’d love to discuss how we can help your family’s learning journey. Call us or email to arrange a meeting in our Knightsbridge headquarters.