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How We Learn

How children learn: British Council nails it

British Council on how children learn languages

“If your child plays with toy cars, they will learn about colour, shape, size, texture, friction, direction, and spatial awareness (forwards, backwards, sideways); they will extend their vocabulary (hearing new words, naming and describing), develop social skills (taking turns and sharing); they will learn how to ask for what they want (verbally or non-verbally), categorise things (let’s put all the blue cars in this box), and put things in sequence (what comes next?) – the possibilities are endless. As long as we provide the right conditions, their learning and development will take place in a natural and integrated way.”

“What your child needs is a loving, stimulating and enriching environment, with a balance of adult-led and child-led activities and age-appropriate resources. Adult-led activities, which can be things like stories, songs, rhymes, games, arts and crafts, and dance-and-movement activities, give the child exposure to the language. But it is the interactions that take place, particularly in the child-led activities, that can really support and broaden a child’s language development, encouraging authentic and meaningful communication in context. The right conditions help children learn even more.”

How can young children best learn languages? (British Council Voices magazine, 20 June 2016)

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