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Teaching kids to love a foreign language

Teaching kids a foreign language is just as important as to love it. While many parents would enjoy for their children to learn a foreign language, it is not always feasible. Many times, older children are not interested in learning another language.

Mostly, they feel outcasts among friends that don’t speak the language. In addition to not sharing the same connection in learning a language, older children, especially, have a difficult time to accept the differences.

More often, they have trouble keeping up with their native one let alone another language. What keeps older children from achieving their desire to learn a second language?

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Meanwhile, it is easier to persuade young children to learn a different language, it is quite difficult to motivate older children. What is one aspect of learning a language that can trigger older kids to appreciate a parent’s native foreign language?

Strategies for teaching kids to love another language

If you have a family that speaks the native language, introduce your children to phrases of the language spoken. When you surround your children with it, they are more apt to pick up those unique phrases.

Are there areas of your culture that your children would appreciate more if they knew how to read or speak it? That is another reason why children may get into a language in the first place.

Of course, it is not easy to engage children in learning another language. Games or fun activities are interactive ways to motivate them to learn.

If your culture has simple games that children can follow, nurture their curiosity with games, videos, or movies. Especially when family gatherings are prevalent in foreign countries, many immigrant families continue with traditions.

Immerse your children in the culture of your ancestors by learning from movies, videos, and books. Does your family have a personal tradition?

teaching kids

Foster the love of learning a foreign language

How you traveled to other places just to immerse in the language? If you are one of the many lucky families that go to experience culture and different languages, take those moments to involve your children.

Monitor how other parents in other cultures educate their children in their language. Some cultures have children learn it from their grandparents.

Other cultures have children taking language classes before starting school. Aside from using different methods of learning, encourage your children to appreciate the beauty of language.

Furthermore, children are more enthusiastic when they learn with friends and other family members.

The drawbacks of living bilingual

Meanwhile, young children do not feel the pressure to fit in as much as older children; kids need to boost their self-esteem. Bilingual adolescents, in particular, tend to disregard their ancestral language and focus more on what they learn at school.

For example, they often tie in self-identification concerning other students in school more than their family members. For that reason, many children lose focus on identity with heritage and language.

As part of the growing pains for teens, trying to accommodate with self-esteem and an appreciation of their culture is a difficult task. Consequently, help your children of all ages to understand the unique heritage in learning a foreign language.

Perhaps, small steps are necessary when introducing a second language. The most vital part is to teach them to love learning a foreign language.

As teaching kids to appreciate another language is essential as part of a culture, there are signs that most older children reject the idea. With the help of games, movies, and family members, older kids can begin to appreciate learning another language.

Essentially, the integration of culture, school, and family will slowly allow older children to create a love of learning a foreign language.

Barbara Mascareno

Barbara is an educational writer, teacher, and instructional designer. She loves to write K-12 education content, teaching strategies, bilingual education approaches, and foreign language.

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