Something I’ve learned

Why should English be taught as early as possible (Ex: at primary schools)?; How do the children learn and want to learn English?; What methods should we use to teach English to children?

All the questions above are what I have dealt with and found answers for after first days of learning the PELT, and what I have learned are briefed below:

– I learned that of the childhood, the child’s brain is said to be “open” and it is therefore easy to “put” something into, then form and develop it to make competences. This becomes a special period that adults/teachers should take advantage to teach and help the children have basic background of English as well as get them a wide cognition about the world around.

Realizing this useful time of learning language, many countries nowadays has made important changes in education such as adding and making English one of the prime subjects at primary school. This action has achieved noticeable successes and gradually become a global revolution.

– Children are innocent and less self-conscious. They think there is no reason for learning anything, and E is not exceptional. So we should understand thoroughly their psychology and find out most suitable and useful methods to teach them: Children learn everything mainly through the mimic and they want anything on the earth to appear in sort of simple, easy-to-understand, colorful and especially funny. Then E should also be presented in the same ways. It is necessary to form friendly environment of learning E for children as well as to give them feeling that they are only playing games of language or just taking part in an funny activity, not that of ‘studying’ a language.

– I saw that to meet this need, storytelling method seems to be one of the most efficient ones. By choosing easy understanding, attractive stories with colorful and imaginative pictures, the teachers possibly become magicians in motivating the children’s interest and inspiration of learning and discovering the target language.

When studying this method, I knew more about:

– Steps to teach E effectively through stories

– How to use objects, materials

– How to enhance understanding of children

In addition to this, the teacher is no longer the center of the lesson, but rather plays role of a facilitator. (As students work on their tasks, the teacher rotates through the room, helps the ones who have difficulty. This helps to keep the lesson spontaneous and attractive.) The children who participate in this kind of learning also have chance to interact more often with each other and with teacher. They will learn vocabulary faster and understand as well as remember the lesson better.

In conclusion, this method is really interesting and if the teacher can approach and make use of its strong sides, the effect and success of each English lesson will be absolutely brought into play.

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About Ha Minh

Senior at Faculty of Foreign Language, Thai Nguyen University, Vietnam

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