How to Support Dual Language Learners in Preschool

Early Childhood Education

Dual language learners are usually children who are learning two languages at the same time. For instance, they might speak one language at home and can generally learn another one at their preschool. Supporting these children is important because it helps them succeed in both languages at a very young age. In this blog, we will be looking at some useful tips for educators and parents on how to support dual language learners.

Tips for Educators

#1 Create a Welcoming Environment

Firstly, you need to make the preschool environment a little bit more welcoming for the children. To do this, teachers should typically make use of signs and labels in both languages. This can help children feel more comfortable as they can see their home language being used at school. Hence, creating language-rich environments for kids can eventually help them learn a new language more easily.

#2 Use Visual Aids

Visual aids can be more helpful tools. This is because they usually involve pictures, charts, and flashcards. All these tools can enhance the learning experience of children by helping them understand new words in a more playful manner. Hence, these visual aids can eventually help to reinforce learning.

#3 Include Songs and Rhymes

Under the popular dual-language teaching methods, educators can also use songs and rhymes to promote dual-language learning. This is because children usually remember words better when they listen to songs. Therefore, teachers can use some songs or rhyming words to introduce some basic concepts or ideas in both languages.

#4 Promote Peer Interaction

Peer interaction is yet another important factor that can help dual language learners in preschool. Let children talk and play together. Group activities usually help them learn from each other and can enhance their language skills.

#5 Be Patient and Supportive

Patience is crucial in supporting and encouraging young dual language learners. Dual language learners might need a little bit of extra time to respond to and understand the new language. Therefore, you need to give them the required time and space to learn and grow.

Tips for Parents

#1 Read Daily

You can start reading books to your children in both languages. You can technically do this on alternative days and should generally choose some simple and fun stories. This can help your child learn new words and build a love for books.

#2 Talk About Your Day

You should also tell your child how your day was in a mix of both languages and ask them about their day in the same way. This practice will help strengthen the bond between parents and children. Plus, it will help them learn new vocabulary through such interactive sessions.

#3 Play Games

You should play some simple language games with your child that can typically make learning fun. For this, use games that involve new words in both languages. This will eventually help them develop their linguistic abilities in the long run.

#4 Stay Connected with Teachers

You should also talk to their teachers and share information about their language background. This is because communication between parents and teachers will keep their progress report on this particular topic on track.

Language Development Activities

#1 Cooking Activities

Cooking activities can usually be fun and educational. You can start by teaching your child the names of some ingredients and cooking tools in both languages. Then, you can explain simple recipes and discuss each step in both languages.

#2 Practice Role-Playing

You should set up role-playing scenarios for your child, such as a store owner, a restaurant owner, or a doctor. Encourage children to use both languages during their play. This will typically help them practice real-life conversations and improve their linguistic skill set in both languages.

Conclusion

Parents and teachers can use the above-mentioned language learning tips to support dual language learners. Parent involvement in this language learning process is equally important. Additionally, supporting language diversity in both home and school settings can further help dual language learners learn a particular language at a faster rate.

At Creative World of Learning in Miami Valley and Dayton, we promote a rich and inclusive environment for dual language learners. We are dedicated educators who support and promote language development and cultural diversity inside and outside the preschool setting. So, contact or visit us today to learn more about our programs. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to see for yourself how we can support your child’s bilingual journey.