Learning a second language is an important skill for kids. It can help them in their future career, expand their horizons, and help them make friends from a variety of different backgrounds.
Spanish is one of the most popular languages in the United States and there are millions who speak it as a first or second language. Helping your kids learn Spanish can help them get ahead.
However, if you’re not a teacher yourself, you may not know how you can support and supplement your kids as they learn Spanish. This may especially be the case if you don’t speak Spanish yourself.
Thankfully, there are many ways you can help your kids to learn Spanish.
There are several different techniques to teach Spanish to kids at home, whether you’re teaching them from scratch as part of a homeschooling program or as part of public schooling.
There is no single way to teach Spanish as all kids learn differently. In this article, we will list several methods you can use but you will have to try and see which works best for your kids.
Speak Spanish At Home
If you speak Spanish yourself, one of the most effective ways to help your kid learn Spanish is to speak Spanish to them as much as possible.
One of the ways kids learn their native language is by hearing it all day, every day, and you should try to mimic this if you can. By speaking Spanish at home, your kids will see how Spanish can fit into everyday life.
Ask your kid simple questions in Spanish and ask them to answer in Spanish. This can give your kids the opportunity to practice speaking in a low-stress environment and will help them overcome any anxiety they have about making mistakes.
Learn Spanish Together
Our last suggestion is great if you speak Spanish yourself, but what if you don’t? Don’t worry, there are still ways you can get your child to speak Spanish at home!
If you don’t know any Spanish, we highly recommend learning with your child. Take a look at the Spanish classes that are available in your region as some educational centers offer parent and child classes.
These are not only a great way to support your child as they learn Spanish, but can also help you bond, Take whatever you learn in class home and practice together.
Language Learning Apps
In the past, learning languages often meant working through dusty and dry textbooks that struggled to hold the interest of kids.
Thankfully that is no longer the case as there are plenty of apps available that can teach kids Spanish.
These apps are bright and colorful and they make learning a language a fun game, so your kid learns without even realizing it.
They’re available for all ages and although fluency is almost impossible with apps, you can get a good foundation in a language.
Many apps do require subscriptions, but they usually offer a free trial. We recommend taking advantage of these trials and allowing your kid to try a few out to see which they prefer.
Some of the apps have parental settings that allow you to monitor your kid’s progress as well, so you can check how they are progressing through the app.
YouTube is a great resource for learning any language regardless of age. Whether a learner wants to learn how to count to ten or wants to listen to fluent lectures, there is something on YouTube!
It’s especially a great resource for kids that are learning a language. Many Spanish videos that are aimed at young students feature colorful characters or songs that kids are sure to enjoy.
YouTube videos will also give your kid the opportunity to hear Spanish spoken by native speakers. This is very important for kids as if they are going to speak Spanish well, they need to understand and be able to copy native pronunciation.
Kids are better at picking up pronunciation than adults are so get them listening to as many native speakers as possible!
This leads us to our next point!
Seek Native Speakers
We can’t underemphasize how important conversing with native speakers is when learning a new language. This is especially the case if you’re not a fluent Spanish speaker yourself.
If you have a Spanish-speaking friend, see if they’d be willing to speak with your kid. Make sure they understand that although correcting mistakes is important, it should be done gently and in a supportive manner.
Too much correction or correction that is too firm can discourage kids from trying.
If you don’t know any Spanish speakers, take a look at local activities to see if there are any language exchange groups.
These groups link people that are trying to learn each other’s languages as part of a mutual exchange. Your kid will be able to speak with a Spanish speaker that is learning English and they can teach each other.
This is a great way to reinforce vocabulary. As your kid learns more Spanish vocabulary and nouns, label items around the house with their Spanish name.
As your kid goes about their day at home, they will see the vocabulary repeatedly. It will help them remember the words and also how to spell them.
In this article, we introduced a few ideas for how to teach Spanish to kids. The best way to teach any language is to approach it from a variety of different angles as this is how kids learn their native language.
We advise using several of the techniques in this article.
Every kid is different, however, so some of these tips and techniques may not work for your kid. Some kids are more studious than others while other kids are more visual in their learning.
You should choose whichever method works best for your child and try a few different approaches.
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