Posts Tagged ‘ELL – English Language Learners’

Baby learning two languagesWe get fired up about the importance of early childhood education. The reason is simple. In the first seven years of a child’s life, their brains are firing up with learning—literally! Every new experience lights up the synapses in the brain and repetition makes those pathways stronger.

At the age of two, a child’s brain includes over a 100 trillion synapses. That’s 50 percent more than we have as adults. While these new connections form rapidly and are strengthened through repetition, the brain also prunes connections not used frequently. This strengthening and deleting that happens in young children’s brains ultimately helps them process thoughts and actions more quickly.

Babies’ brains ripe for learning more than one language

All that action in the brain makes children under the age of 7 the ideal age for engaging in new experiences, including learning more than one language. In fact, new research conducted with six-month-old infants in Singapore indicates a generalized cognitive advantage that emerges early in infants raised in a bilingual home and is not specific to a particular language.

“As adults, learning a second language can be painstaking and laborious,” explained co-author and Associate Professor Leher Singh in a press release. “We sometimes project that difficulty onto our young babies, imagining a state of enormous confusion as two languages jostle for space in their little heads. However, a large number of studies have shown us that babies are uniquely well positioned to take on the challenges of bilingual acquisition and in fact, may benefit from this journey.”

The study found that:

  • The infants raised in a bilingual home become bored with familiar images faster than children brought up in a monolingual home.
  • Those same infants paid more attention to new images when compared to babies living in a monolingual home.

So what does that all mean? According to the press release, previous studies show that a quicker response to familiar objects and interest in new objects can predict preschool developmental outcomes, including non-verbal cognition and expressive and receptive language. Think about it. Children learning two languages at the same time are exposed to the sounds of more than one language and must learn to distinguish between the two. This makes for more—and stronger—neural connections! See why we get fired up for early childhood education?

Rocking the bilingual brain

At Kindermusik, our ELL curriculum, ABC English & Me,  uses songs, story time, puppets, and Total Physical Response for English Language Learning. Research shows that music ABC English & Me - Teaching English to Children through Musichas a positive impact on learning a second language. For example, in class ELL students may hear and repeat the rhythmic language of a nursery rhyme or song multiple times. The repetition creates stronger connections in the brain and helps children learn to speak and later read in English as their English language phonological awareness increases.

Learn more about using music to learn English as a second language at www.Kindermusik.com.

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Once upon a time, an educator who loved music moved from Milan, Italy, to bring the joy of learning English through music to children in a land faraway. Around the same time, an enchanting place called Monte Carlo Munchkins Club opened its doors to welcome children during their most formative years. As in any great fairytale, the two were destined to meet. On the
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Je suis. Tu es. Il est. Nous sommes. If you studied a second language in high school or college, you probably know all about conjugating verbs. As teenagers or adults, learning the grammar rules of another language often form the foundation for second-language learning. However, teaching a second language to children looks completely different. After all, children under the age of 7 can’t read
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Athletes employ the benefits of music to boost overall performance. Science shows that specific types of music can really get the blood pumping and focus the mind on the task at hand—like 1-minute planks or running those last few miles. However, a new study also shows that music can get the blood pumping for language development, too. Music and language development on the same
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Are you familiar with the old George and Ira Gershwin song, “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off”? They wrote it for the 1937 film Shall We Dance, starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Sing with us: “You like potato and I like potahto You like tomato and I like tomahto Potato, potahto, Tomato, tomahto. Let’s call the whole thing off.”   In the song, the
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We rock out in our early childhood music classes—literally and figuratively. From our classes for babies, toddlers, big kids or families to our early literacy and language program in preschools, Head Start programs, and daycares to our ELL curriculum, we use the benefits of music to engage children of all abilities in learning. And, we have a lot of fun in the process! In
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There was a fascinating article recently published in Forbes magazine about how one man is using music, and specifically a music school, to shape a new generation in Vietnam.  The title of the article says it all, “Music Awakens Education in Vietnam.”  Nguyen Hong Minh’s vision is to use music to broaden minds, expand opportunities, impact the current culture, and create future leaders –
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Ever wonder why toddler play groups are more commonly called, “play dates”? Sure, there is the obvious play involved on a certain date, but to be more accurate, why not call them “work dates”? After all, play is work to a child. Albert Einstein claimed that “play is the highest form of research.” Even babies use play to research their world. In fact, through
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Ever wonder why toddler play groups are more commonly called, “play dates”? Sure, there is the obvious play involved on a certain date, but to be more accurate, why not call them “work dates”? After all, play is work to a child. Albert Einstein claimed that “play is the highest form of research.” Even babies use play to research their world. In fact, through
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Kindermusik International’s English Language Learning (ELL) curriculum, ABC English & Me, is a fun, musically-based way for ELL children to learn English.  As with all of Kindermusik’s newest curricula, the class experience is supported and enhanced by @Home Materials which are accessed digitally and conveniently available to families at any time, anywhere. The Kindermusik @Home Materials that come with every ABC English & Me
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