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Intermediate Book for 6 year olds 
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Location: Aichi, Japan
Post Intermediate Book for 6 year olds
I have three 6 year old girls who went to an English pre-school and now have started Japanese elementary school. They use Let's Go! at there former pre-school's after school program. They come here for conversation with a native speaker. Their moms suggested Side by Side but it is way to adult for 6 year olds. Any suggestions on a good book to reinforce speaking: ie. I am, he / she is etc. There is / There are etc. I have used MES stuff a lot and it is great. No, I mean fantastic. But, I'm also looking for a book. Thanks


Wed Apr 28, 2010 11:45 am
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Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 10:46 am
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Location: Nagano, Japan
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What about having them start a reader, instead of a textbook?

There are some good books by Oxford, Dolphin Readers.

Another option is a first grade or kindergarten level workbooks:
Spectrum reading Grade K
Spectrum reading Grade 1
- only down side to these is each workbook is 100+ pages. They're very useful but if you have limited time (once a week) it will be hard to get through the. I use these with my elementary school students instead of a textbook. They won't provide you with prescriptive grammar practice, though.

I think with students at this age the more you can do with them on language in context (verses grammar based language instruction) the better. Readers expose them to vocabulary and structures. Readers from Spectrum etc. are not graded so students are exposed to "real" English at a cognition level that is age-wise lower than they are and easier to understand. Luckily Japanese students aren't so turned off by something seeming "kiddy". I don't know if they would go over so well in other places.

With the readers, you can discuss the stories, review what happened, ask them what they think will happen next, have them retell the story, have them act out the stories, etc. There's a lot you can do.

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Wed Apr 28, 2010 12:13 pm
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Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 5:33 pm
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Location: Aichi, Japan
Post Thanks
They have picked up some really bad habits and they really need to be blasted with I like / He Likes, I do / He does, There is / There are, past tense etc. And they seem to always refer to themselves as "we" even if they are talking about themselves. ex. "We have a pen." Reality: There is a pen. (on the table) or "My daddy do like this." etc. I use the Spectrum books for their older brothers in 3rd grade. These girls couldn't handle it. You rock Mark!


Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:13 pm
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The after school program at my elementary school uses the English Land books by Longman Pearson - there are 6 levels and they all include Disney characters to introduce the topics.

Maybe these would be helpful for you.


Thu Apr 29, 2010 5:34 pm
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Post Re: Thanks
nagoyaben wrote:
They have picked up some really bad habits and they really need to be blasted with I like / He Likes, I do / He does, There is / There are, past tense etc. And they seem to always refer to themselves as "we" ...

If they were in an international kindergarten, I assume they "learned" English in a natural environment. there are stages to development for different things such as negation, morpheme acquisition and past tense formation. (I've only roughly read about it, so I can't give you a breakdown. A quick search of http://scholar.google.com only turned up journal articles that require a subscription to access. You could try searching "word order acquisition" and "second language" or "English grammar".)

Reading what you said, it seems that what you may have deemed a bad habit may just be a step towards better organization of form. Over time and with exposure the students may reorganize their (learner) grammar to more accurately fit native English grammar. What I'm trying to say is that they may in time self-correct. Expecting them to produce perfect sentences may inhibit their production and evolution as a second language speaker. (At least they're talking and not afraid to communicate, even roughly. Many of my students won't talk if they can't form the sentence with some level of confidence.) Their willingness to communicate will help them work through these problems.

From another angle, if they don't have enough exposure, chances to produce English (or maybe even motivation) they may fossilize at that stage and never really progress without some sort of external change. Not really a problem for kids at that age, but basically, if they can get by with these communicative strategies, they may not advance. In that sense, you maybe should keep providing them with feedback as to the proper form and that's where I think a reader would be helpful (as well as recasts and elicitation in unscripted conversations.)

So, keep them talking and don't worry too much if their production isn't necessarily grammatical. Hopefully, with a positive attitude towards English and increased exposure/production, you'll see some restructuring and better performance over time.

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Fri Apr 30, 2010 2:55 pm
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