5 easy steps to improve your child's English at home
Here are some easy steps that you can follow at home to improve your child's English. You'd start noticing a difference soon
Being a mother of a five-year-old daughter and coming from a family that primarily speaks Hindi, one of the toughest thing for me was to enhance my little one's English vocabulary and English-speaking skills.
There's no denying that we all want our kids to understand and be fluent in our mother tongue as we want to keep our cultural legacy intact. While that is surely a good thing to do, many mothers get worried that because their kids generally speak in their mother tongue, their English speaking skills get neglected.
However, from my experience I can say that kids are like clay. They take the shape as you mould them. This is why experts say that kids are the fastest learners, especially when they are three to five years old.
So, if you want to improve your child's english, but don't know how to go about it, fret not. Here are some easy steps that you can follow at home to improve your child's english. You'd notice a difference in your child's spoken English skills in a month.
1. Incorporate a reading habit
The first thing that you can do is by helping your child develop a reading habit. This can be as simple as buying some good English books and ones that interest him. I got my daughter interested in English by getting her books such as Champak, Magic Pot, Amar Chitra Katha, The Children's magazine, Chanda Mama and other kids' magazines that have some wonderful stories, which also have great life lessons in their stories.
I started giving my daughter these magazines when she turned three and today my five-year-old is already a voracious reader and can easily read level 2 books, which normal kids begin reading later. Reading has also expanded her vocabulary and she can confidently speak to her teachers and principal in school.
Besides, these stories are woven around mythological or animal characters that somehow seem to appeal the kids more. You can begin by reading out those stories to your child until he develops a habit and then encourage him to read on his own. Sit with him and dedicate a time for reading during the day. Both of you would look forward to it.
2. Choose your TV shows wisely
We all love watching daily soaps, but sometimes we don't even notice that our kids are watching them with us as well. And then they end up picking up words from them, which further deteriorates their English-speaking skills.
This is why you must be wary of what shows you watch in front of your kids and, in fact, it would not be a bad idea to skip TV altogether when your child is around. You can have a chat with your child instead.
3. Let your child watch cartoons in English
In this age of DTH and HD TV, every Television set comes with an option of changing the language. With its help you can set the language of your child's favourite TV channels as English. He might not like it in the beginning, but trust me he would eventually get used to it.
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You can also make your child watch English shows such as Mister Maker, Mickey Mouse club house and cartoon shows on Discovery India, which are not only fun to watch, but would also improve your child's English pronunciation.
4. Encourage your child to speak in English
Once your child develops a habit and picks up some basic English skills, you can encourage him to speak in English at home. You can lead by example and start basic conversation with your child in English.
5. Do not laugh when your child speaks wrong english or falters
Never cut your child or laugh at him if he says something wrong in English. You will only discourage him and perhaps he would hesitate to speak in English in front of you. Being a mother you are the greatest teacher for your child and always remember that your child looks up to you for support.
Be patient and motivate your child, no matter how good or bad his English is. Trust me, nothing matters the most to your child then your love and words of encouragement.
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