Chinese comes easily to many children, especially if they start young. Bilingualism will give them opportunities to communicate with a broader range of people around the world and serve them well throughout their lives.
Language acquisition comes quite easily to children who are just learning to speak, and they can pick up more than one language simultaneously.
1. Useful Study Tips for Young Learners
- Encourage good study habits by scheduling regular homework/practise time and offering help and encouragement when necessary.
- Let your child teach you what they learned in class. Look at the pages in the book your child studied. Ask them to identify pictures and name objects.
- Help your child make a ‘personal dictionary’. In a notebook, write a letter of the alphabet at the top of each page. Start with A and end with Z. Children can record new words learnt at LCA or at school on the appropriate page. They can draw pictures to illustrate the meaning, give the English translation or use it in a sentence. This can be a great way to review.
- Watch appropriate Chinese videos, cartoons suitable to the age and level of student, you can find them at LCA Youtube Channel .
- Encourage children to read to you every day, or you can read to them! Again, we have the list of Bilingual story books for you to purchase at home.
- Make sure they are actually using those CDs that you paid for at the start of the course. Too many kids never even take off the cellophane wrapping on their CDs. Your child can learn a lot from reviewing material from each unit on the tapes. Put the CDs in your car, my children love to repeat the CD which helps them a lot!
- If you can speak even a little Chinese, don’t be afraid to use it with your child. Don’t be afraid that your child will learn bad pronunciation-that’s one of the reasons you send them to us! But the more exposure they have to the language, the better they will become at Chinese.
2. Be Realistic about What Your Child Can Do
- All students have active and passive knowledge. This means that students can understand and recognise more than they can say or write.
- Focus on what children know rather than what they have forgotten. Students often personalize new words. Lilly might remember “doll”, “skipping rope” while Tom remembers words like “dinosaur”, “robot”.
- When children acquire their mother tongue, they understand and speak before they are capable of reading and writing. This is also true when learning a foreign language.
- Learners need to encounter language many times over a period of time before they ‘know’ it. Don’t expect your child to ‘know’ it all after the first lesson. The teacher will review words in the next lesson to help students remember.
- Studies show that learners who have regular exposure to another language before puberty are more likely to have better language skills (including pronunciation) by the time they are adults.
3. At Home
- Ask your child what they did in class and to show you, do homework together.
- Have your child read to you and explains/translate.
- Label household objects and rooms such as television, sofa, bathroom and kitchen etc.
- Let your child teach you Chinese.
- Listen to and sing to Chinese songs.
- Download Chinese Learning Apps.