Now I'm finally in a place where I feel doing it poorly/sub-par is better than not doing it at all for several reasons...
At times while answering the questions of "how will we distribute our book? How will we promote this stuff?" Christine and I have gone back and forth over selling our content at a profit, or at-cost, or making it free, or making it free to friends and associates who can test it for us. We've been all over the place.
Christine (and my own husband) has persuaded me to go completely free: "We want people all over the world to give it a try no matter what language-learning situation they're in. Why not make it free to them and see what happens?" I was convinced especially since I've benefited greatly from free resources online and realized THAT is the open-handed, open-source virtual community that we want our curriculum to join.
I am so happy to announce the opening of our new PDF Store, where you can easily download every program and book Christine and I have created!
For those who want to officially join what we are trying to do in the world of early language learning, please join our Patreon family. We are looking for others who want to be part of this team!
Two years and one baby since we published our curriculum on Amazon Kindle Store, and the Language Learning for Children Official Coloring Book is now available!
I am extremely excited to share this with you today. It is my joy to create these illustrations, because I know the cute look of wide-eyed discovery children get when they get to hold a coloring page, their little minds already imagining what colors they shall use to color each part of the page.
What is so fun about coloring pictures? It's not just for kids anymore, coloring books for adults are trendy right now. Even coloring book apps are popular. Adding the element of coloring pages to every language lesson is a fun way to engage children's minds and creativity, and give them something to "take home" after the class. Encourage your class to save their colored sheets (maybe they can each personalize a special folder to keep their colored sheets together) for review on their own, or with their siblings.
(for more ideas on how to use the coloring book with your class, view the PDF download page here)
This would not be possible without support from my husband and graphic design help from my older sister. Thank you both for helping this little book become reality. For now at least, we are making the coloring book PDF free to users of our curriculum. It's not easy to print large images off a Kindle book, so we thought we would make it a free PDF download available through the website.
Why are you still here reading? Click "Coloring Book" above and download it right now!
"Don't touch!" is a phrase I use way too often with my kinesthetic learner two-year-old son. So much of his world is experienced by touch. Everything at his fingertips needs to be explored. Just this week he burned his fingers on a hot frying pan, and now he is learning about how skin heals on its own with "little water bubbles". It's all I can do to keep him from popping the blisters on his own!
With second language learning too, kids need to be able to touch and handle the objects that represent their vocabulary. It's part of the natural learning experience. And its our job to provide as many chances for kids to get their hands involved as possible.
How do we do that in Language Learning for Children? Every group of new vocabulary is introduced with a "Look & Touch"activity. In these activities, the language helper places two new objects in front of the kids, and identifies each one. Then he/she asks "Where is the ____?" and the kids will get to point and touch the correct object. From there, after a few repetitions, the language helper will include more objects from the new words group.
Without a concrete object in front of them, kids can get lost in the abstraction of the target vocabulary. "As real as possible" is a good rule of thumb when picking objects for Look and Touch. If you are learning fruits, use real fruit. If you are learning names for family members, real people, detailed dolls, or pictures of family members would all be potential choices.
Sometimes using the real world object is totally unwise and unfeasible. A notable example might be while learning "Dirty Things" in Lesson 8, using real poop or real mud during the Look & Touch activity would be a HORRIBLE IDEA. While learning Indian vegetables, Christine and I thought it would be brilliant to use real chili peppers during the games, and during the course of the class, one chili broke open and the seeds went everywhere. We then had to make sure no kid touched their eyes or face during the class until there was an opportunity for everyone to thoroughly wash hands. We are geniuses and proud of it.
Whenever using real objects doesn't work, that's where cardboard Look & Touch objects will do the job. We've created a short video on how to make some for your own class. Don't be intimidated if you are "not the artsy type". There are plenty of alternative ways to put pictures/clip art onto paper. Especially if you have a printer!
Get the kids in your class to make these with you outside of class time. Maybe an older child with crafty inclinations could make the new objects for each class. The best thing about using cardboard objects is that they can LAST FOREVER. Whenever a class is particularly rough on my cardboard objects, a little glue stick maintenance is all they need to stay in top shape! They even hold up to "droolers" well if you let them dry out thoroughly between uses (anyone with a one year old baby knows what I mean).
Let us know how your cardboard objects turned out, by leaving a comment below. Thanks for reading. Check back for more tips and tools here on our blog.
Post created by Alyssa Johnson