Sonrisas Spanish Blog

Foreign Language Learning Advocacy

spanish curriculum lessons for preschoolersLearning a language can be difficult, even during a child’s first eight years in which they’re naturally acquiring language skills every day. Despite the difficulties, learning a second language can be extremely beneficial to your child for the rest of their life.

If you’re dedicated to helping your child learn a second language that could very well help them later in life, here are a few tips to make the process easier for both of you.

Sign up for a Class

The first step is to actually sign your child up for a class. It can be online or in person, but Spanish curriculum lessons for preschoolers are important if you want to make the language learning process easier for your child. Spanish curriculum for kids is often simplistic, so if you want them to learn from the comfort of your home, that’s perfectly okay. In some cases, it may even make the learning process easier.

Informal Lessons are Even Better

If you or your child have a friend who speaks fluent Spanish, invite them over! Informal Spanish for preschoolers often takes place in a more comfortable setting than a classroom. Above all else, this is a great way to build social skills and enhance what your child has already learned in the classroom.

Bilingual Bedtime Stories

One of the most effective ways to reinforce Spanish curriculum lessons is to incorporate them into everyday activities. Stories, in particular, are a great way to really reinforce what your child has already learned. If you can make it a fun activity, like reading a book and having your child identify pictures that match the Spanish words, even better. Spanish curriculum lessons for preschoolers already cover the basics, but if you want those lessons to stick, then you should work to include the language in your own home.

The most important lesson to remember here is that you should be learning alongside your child. In order for them to have the most formative learning experience possible, you should make an attempt to show your child that they’re not the only one learning new things.

At Sonrisas Spanish we have always resisted the idea of using technology to teach Spanish to young children. This of course goes against the strong national trend to incorporate more and more technology into education. It is not that we are anti-technology, but rather we feel that it is very important that technology is used appropriately for language learning—especially for young language learners. What this means to us is that technology is not used to take the place of a teacher.

We feel strongly that language learning for young children is most effective when students are taught by a human. The core of an effective foreign language lesson involves communication between humans. Communication, and in turn language acquisition, occurs when the learner has the opportunity to negotiate meaning. Negotiation of meaning requires social interaction, and social interaction requires human interaction. Negotiation of meaning is going to be nil or extremely limited if the interaction is media-based.

This is why the Sonrisas Curriculum does not include videos or internet components. It is also why we explicitly recommend that teachers use our CDs to learn the songs and then sing them with their students. It is also why we hate to see schools choosing programs such as Rosetta Stone over effective curriculum where content is delivered by a teacher. The bottom line is that using technology is not only NOT the best way to teach young children language, but it is also simply not necessary. Children acquire language so naturally and easily when they are given the opportunity to interact with a talented teacher using effective curriculum. This is the environment we strive to provide at Sonrisas.

Sonrisas Spanish creates, publishes, and sells preschool and elementary Spanish curriculum. The Sonrisas Spanish Curriculum consists of fun, effective, standards-based Spanish lessons for children.

I was doing some end of the year/semester contemplation, and I was thinking about the questions, “Why do we teach foreign language to children? What is so important about it?”. We have addressed this question before in the Sonrisas blog—mostly by writing about the different benefits of foreign language education for kids. I would like to present an easy, short list of the top five reasons to teach foreign language to children:

  1. Because they love it. Kids love learning languages. They just do. You see it when you teach them, and you see it when they use their second language. There is something inherent in learning a second language that brings joy to children.
  2. Because it makes their brains better. There is no counterargument here. Second language learning is good for a kid’s brain.
  3. Because it’s useful. The more languages you know, the more stuff you can do in more places.
  4. Because it improves their first language. Children who learn a second language become more aware of the syntax and grammar of their first language, thereby improving their usage of it.
  5. Because it makes the world a happier, more peaceful, and safer place. Whether on a personal level or a global one, communication is the source of happiness, peace, and safety. We all want this for our children and our world.

Sonrisas Spanish School creates, publishes, and sells preschool and elementary Spanish curriculum and Spanish music for children. The Sonrisas Spanish School Curriculum can be used to teach Spanish to children at the preschool and elementary level, as well as home school Spanish. The Sonrisas Curriculum consists of fun, effective, standards-based lessons for the most effective language-learning experience for kids—one based on human-to-human interaction.