While COVID-19 has caused many disruptions, it can also provide people with some unforeseen advantages, including the opportunity for parents and teachers to teach their children and students language. Krashen, an emeritus professor of Education at the University of Southern California and author of many language acquisition books, provides some insights for doing just that:
7 Tips for Teaching Language at Home
Don’t be Afraid of Non-Traditional Learning
Krashen notes that learning is not acquired through studying, speaking, or writing, but by understanding. It is important to understand this to receive results. Instead of approaching language learning through traditional means, parents and teachers should not hesitate to use unconventional learning strategies.
Use Remote Learning to Your Advantage
Students “do not need massive amounts of interaction to acquire a new language, but instead need large amounts of input.” Some possible methods of input include allowing students to read for pleasure and by sharing more stories for students to listen to.
Share Your Heritage Language
If a language other than what is native to the student is known by members of the family, speaking in that language can benefit everyone in the household. It allows the student to learn a new language, while also connecting them with their family and their culture. They can learn from their family’s experiences.
Encourage Fiction Reading
Fiction, specifically science fiction, can introduce students to a wide range of vocabulary, while also teaching them other information – such as geography, history, and science topics. Allowing them to read fiction can provide more enjoyment for the students, as opposed to reading non-fiction and academic texts.
Avoid Self-Learning Texts
A study conducted by Krashen found that texts with self-instruction for language learning were many times not completed. Not only can these texts be very overwhelming, but many times this method of learning can be unappealing to the learner.
Access Your Online Library
Take advantage of your library’s online catalog during this time. Although the physical library may be closed. Continuing to find and read books for pleasure can help keep up with the student’s language learning progress.
Be on the Lookout for Access to Publications
During this time, many publishers are increasing access to their publications, which can help students continue learning. Taking advantage of access to these publications can help students continue education during the pandemic.
Source Author: Stephen Krashen
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