As adults we tend to take for granted our ability to speak our own native language. We easily forget how long it took us to master our native tongue. Only when we start to learn a new language do we realize just how hard it is.
Children however, have the ability to learn at a rapid rate. If they start learning English by attending an International Kindergarten, Preschool or Daycare at around the age of 2 or 3 then by the time they are 6 years old they will have mastered the basics. If you have a toddler who is 2 or 3 years old it may be hard to imagine them at 6 years old, but believe me the time passes quickly. Now is the best chance they will ever have.
There are many factors which influence the development of language. Here are 8 things to consider when gauging the development of your child.
- Your child’s relationship and affinity with the English teacher; If the teacher and child are able to relate well with each other then this will encourage positive language development. Teachers should take every opportunity to engage children in a variety of experiences which are accompanied by meaningful language. In this way your child will experience the 3 different ways of learning. 1) Kinaesthetic (movement) 2) Auditory (Listening) and 3) Visual (Watching) This will reinforce and help them to remember more words, expanding their English vocabulary in an efficient way.
- Indigenous Intelligence; How quickly your child can make distinctions about English will have an effect on the speed of their development. Ifyour child has a quick grasp of concepts then this will reinforce their ability to speak more fluently. Imagination also plays a substantial role in a child’s ability to form mental images of objects or events and this in turn has an effect on their ability to express themselves through language. Encouraging imagination and creativity is also something that parents can do at home.
- A Boy or a Girl? From an early age, girls will talk more than boys. As infants they are likely to be more responsive when spoken to by their mothers. If you compare two year old boys and girls it is the girls who will speak longer sentences. They also learn to read faster. The most likely explanation for this is that girls mature faster than boys.
- Effectiveness of the senses; Maturity of the sensory process will allow your child to distinguish stable patterns in their surrounding environment. This is why repetition of concepts is so important in English learning and early childhood environments. It is also important in the home environment. Your child’s sensory effectiveness is very important for learning in general and particularly important for learning the English language. You child’s ability to recognize the different letter shapes of the alphabet , for example, will be determined by this.
- Brothers and sisters? When it comes to language having a bigger role model to help you can make a big difference. Not only can an older brother or sister teach new words but they can also teach important socialization skills. The more positive the relationship, the closer the relationship and the greater potential to learn.
- Upbringing; When it comes to learning English for kids, upbringing is an important aspect because it is something which is directly within parent control. A parent who encourages exploration at home is doing their child a tremendous favor. Exploration encourages an inquisitive mind and this in turn affects English Learning. Also, parents who take the time to explain to their children what they are doing, and those who listen to their child, are showing their child that they respect them. A child who feels respected by their parents will display greater confidence in their ability to speak out and express themselves. Parents also need to consider their child’s abilities and try to put them in environments which suit them. When these things are done correctly there is a higher chance ofacademic success.
- Inspiration; Just as kids can learn from the experience of others they can also be inspired by them. Most kids want their teacher or parent to think highly of them. If your child hears you praise another child for good use of the English language they may well feel inspired to use good English themselves.
- Good T,V, Habits; While too much television is not a good thing, watching regular amounts of English television from an early age can be beneficial.