What is Little Linguists?
Little Linguists makes learning Spanish fun for your children. It is a fun and interactive way for your child to start the lifelong process of acquiring a second language. We use games, activities and songs to introduce and practise vocabulary areas in Spanish of relevance to the age group of the children.
These include subject areas such as numbers, colours, members of the family, parts of the body, at the park and so on. They are carefully chosen to be of interest to the children and to tie in with national curriculum guidelines. The main aim is to have fun and we promote as much interaction in Spanish as possible between parents and carers, the teacher and the children themselves.
The sessions are typically 30 minutes in length. Each session begins with a song and a practice of Spanish greetings. We then review the language covered the previous week either through a song, game or flashcards and then move on to presenting new language, usually a maximum of seven or eight words per lesson.
This again is usually done through an activity such as a game, colouring or using flashcards. At the end of the lesson, each child receives a colourful sticker with a Spanish motivational message such as ¡bien hecho! (well done) upon completion of a simple task in Spanish.
In the general group classes, parents and carers are encouraged to play an active role in the sessions – please don’t worry if you don’t speak Spanish (it’s a good way for you to learn with your child).
We provide a crib sheet for each lesson, containing the vocabulary presented (and its pronunciation), the lyrics to any songs in the session and guidelines for how to best practise the language with your child during the activities in the lesson.
The crib sheet will also give you ideas on how to practise a particular language area at home and when you are out and about so that, if you wish, you can integrate learning Spanish into the daily life of your family.
Each session will also provide you and your child with some fun homework – something to take away to practise the language covered on that day. This may be a mini-book, something to cut out and stick or a picture to colour in. This will reinforce the language learnt and give you some help with practising it during the week between lessons.
Little Linguists also recommends that you start to keep a Spanish file with your child that you can bring along to each lesson. This can be used for keeping homework together for regular language practice, a good place to keep the crib sheets, somewhere where your child can put things of interest connected to Spanish and a useful place for all the stickers!
The main focus is to have fun – research has shown that exposure to any foreign language at an early age will improve your child’s ability to learn any other language at a later stage – and Little Linguists aims to maximise this. The children enjoy it and develop a very positive attitude to language learning.
Parents have commented that their children are showing an active curiosity in Spanish outside the lessons, for example they are naming the colours of things in Spanish and asking what things are in Spanish.
Teachers have commented that in routine checks of knowledge of numbers etc in reception classes and above some children have enjoyed performing their tasks in Spanish instead of their native language – much to the surprise of the teacher concerned!
Little Linguists will give your child a headstart in Spanish, improve skills in their native language and help them immeasurably in later life. The benefits of early second language learning for children are enormous – for more information please follow the links below: