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Teaching the very young. 
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Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 4:03 pm
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Location: Thailand
Post Teaching the very young.
Hi everyone. I have a problem,can you help. I have just been asked to help out at the local nursery(where my daughter goes). The thing is they want me to try and teach them English.The kids are only 1-2 years old,they can hardly speak their own language(thai).Any ideas much appreciated

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jurgen


Tue Nov 25, 2008 2:19 pm
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Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2008 2:27 pm
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Location: South Korea
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Hi jurgensboot,

If you do a search you should be able to find a few threads that discuss what you need help with, so I won't cover to much much of what toers have suggested in the past. search under young or kindergarten.

Anyway, at that age it is all about imput. I have a similar situation here in Korea with 3/4 years olds, but a few of them are actually becoming good speakers for their age. One is the perfect mimic and repeats what he hears me saying to almost anyone.

You'll want to sing songs and do a some TPR activities. With both of these I wouldn't necessarily have them talk. For te songs you can have them clap along, make hand gestures, act stuff out, sho them flash cards or actual objects. Pretty much the same for the TPR; my kindies love acting stuff out.

Thailand aye? Do you have access to the internet in the classroom? If so you can show them little videos, chants,songs, etc.

dreamenglish.com has a a lot of good chants that you can download that are great for little ones. Again, if you can get them to chant along some great if not, that's okay, because they are hearing the target English.

Too keep their attention it's important to have a lot of things planned and changes activities regularly. I think most teachers who work with this age group and those a little older feel its good to change what you are doing every 5-10 mins.

Also simple story books are good. Just read them the book, point at pictures and talk about what you see in the the book.

Finally have extra things planned, that way if something isn''t working you can switch to another thing with out missing a beat.

I work harder for my 4 kindies that all my other classes, but I sure love those kids. they are always happy to see me, even if I just saw them 5 or 10 mins before they come running and screaming hell adn my name when they see me again.


Have a blast!

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Tue Nov 25, 2008 4:27 pm
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Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2008 2:27 pm
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Hey you might also get some ideas form teachers'talk forum on mes.english.

There is one titled "TPR" and another methodology "The silent method" if I remember correctly you should be able to get some ideas from these.

I like to listen to them when I am doing some mindles prep like cutting and pasting.

I also you puppets with my kids. I have an Eyore and Tigger(I wish I could find some o the other Pooh Characters.) hand puppet that my kids just love.

If I forget to bring them they always ask about them.

Sometimes I have a conversation with the puppet and have them introduce what we are studying and other times I use them to demonstrate verbs, actions, rol-play, etc.

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Wed Nov 26, 2008 2:44 pm
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Great idea about the puppets, all the kids love Winnie the pooh. Just so happens my daughter has all of them, so tomorrow it's winnie pooh all round Cheers. :D

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jurgen


Thu Nov 27, 2008 10:17 am
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I teach one class at a preschool with children from 3 months old to 3 and everything in between. I think about 20 kids in all. It took me quite a while to get my method down to teach this age. Of course the youngest kids just sit and cry :) the bit older kids are a lot of fun though.

There are about 15 kids, and this is a typical class these days:
1. warm up-either some kind of tpr activity (clap hands, stand up/sit down, etc) or simple song; head shoulders knees and toes.
2. count to 10 with simple objects, crayons, etc. sing a numbers song
3. sing a whats your name song, and as the kids there name. I can actually get 2 year olds to say, my name is.....
4. Sing and play the London Bridge game. I have teachers there to help me make a bridge that the kids run under. this is simple, but kids love it.
5. Phonics alphabet practice. The students like going through the alphabet and saying the sounds, then we sing the abc song.
6. book reading time.

these are just some ideas, but recently the students are responding quite well and having fun. I put a new page on my website for teaching this age group, and I am working on some new materials for this age as well, you can check it out here: http://www.dreamenglish.com/2and3yearolds
there are also links to all the songs I use, which are free downloads, on that page.

good luck, let us know how it goes!

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Thu Dec 04, 2008 12:30 pm
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Matt Dream wrote:
1. warm up-either some kind of tpr activity (clap hands, stand up/sit down, etc) or simple song; head shoulders knees and toes.


I have a question about this, just out of interest. Do you have the kids actually say the word, or simply perform the action?


Sun Dec 07, 2008 5:27 pm
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Good question. For the youngest students I don't really push them too hard to speak, especially at the beginning of the class. They are just getting used to me being there, and if they do the actions, great! Sometimes I will say, "clap your hands, clap, clap, clap" and try to get them to say the "clap, clap, clap" part with me, but again, I don't push it if they don't say it.

If I am going to warm up with a song like "Head Shoulders Knees and Toes" then I will usually have them first touch their head, shoulder, etc. and I try to get them to say it. Usually though the 1-2 year old kids say nothing, and the 3 year old kids will speak. In the warm up situation I try to make it really fun so the kids are happy to be in English class.

So I guess the quick answer is, just do the action, and if words come out, cool!

Hope this helps! :D

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Sun Dec 07, 2008 8:28 pm
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That’s interesting, thanks! The reason I ask, is because with all the elementary level kids I do tpr with, I tend to find that they soak up the language command/ response pretty fast either way, but the ones that don’t say the word tend to lose interest much much faster. With younger kids holding interest is half the battle, so really I just wondered what you found worked. Thanks again!


Sun Dec 07, 2008 8:55 pm
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Rhythm, repetition, rimes, songs, body language! For those ages, that's the secret!


Sat Jan 03, 2009 12:30 am
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These are all great suggestions. Make sure to have TONS of back up material in case something doesn't work or catch their attention. The great thing with this age group too is that you can do a lot of the same stuff over and over again.


Sat Jan 03, 2009 7:24 pm
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Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes book is my best friend for the wee ones. I print out graphics for the major words in the rhyme and also the words. the words are laminated on A3 paper and the graphics separately. this way I use velcro to attach the graphics to the rhyme and once they learn it I move around the graphics on the rhyme. Not only does it test their memory of the words, they laugh a lot at the nonsense rhyme that is produced!


Sun Jan 25, 2009 8:31 pm
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