How Do You Teach Spanish to Your Son or Daughter?
Now Is the Time
What a precious gift a son and a daughter are! Little eyes, ears, hands, and feet, all working together to gather information about the colorful world around them. These are the crucial years for parents to lay a foundation that sets the tone for the family and provide opportunities for their child to grow and explore. Is soccer one of your passions? Put them in the sport and take them to professional games. Is music part of your daily life? Play music in the house, in the car, everywhere. How about Spanish? Would you love to see your child switch effortlessly from speaking English with his friends, to running in the door and speaking fluent Spanish to his abuela? There’s no better time than now to begin the process of teaching your child Spanish. Here are a few tips we suggest to help you as you begin:
Learn alongside your child
If you’re not excited about the language acquisition journey, we can guarantee that your child won’t be either. When you plan lessons and implement them with passion, your child will quickly realize that Spanish lessons at home mean increased interaction with mom or dad. Instead of the drudgery of more schoolwork, they will look forward to times of laughter and playtime as they are immersed in the Spanish language. We suggest that your word pronunciation is correct, as this will affect the entire process from the start.
Organize a schedule for lessons
The pace of modern life is like a hamster that never stops running on a wheel, and we make you yet another guarantee: if you don’t intentionally organize a daily and weekly schedule for language learning in your household, it won’t happen (or it won’t last for the long run). It doesn’t need to be an elaborate schedule with school bells on the hour and a binder and textbook for each topic. A schedule as simple as setting aside a half hour a day will lead to language learning if stuck to over time. A quick encouragement for you – the goal is progress, not perfection. If life gets busy and you need to skip a day here and there, or if your son or daughter is simply not into the lesson for the day, shake it off and jump right back in tomorrow.
Incorporate Spanish in your daily routine
Not only do we encourage an allotted time for a daily ‘formal’ Spanish lesson, but we also suggest you take advantage of daily life activities to introduce the language. Are you prepping dinner? Ask your son or daughter to help and hand you items that you ask for in Spanish. Does your child want to watch an episode on tv? Put on either a Spanish cartoon or a popular English cartoon dubbed in Spanish (there are endless options online). Reading them a bedtime story? You guessed it, find a Spanish or bilingual storybook to get their imaginations running in Spanish. Even a task as simple as helping them tie their shoes can be an opportunity for language learning and vocabulary reinforcement.
These are just three simple suggestions from us to you to help you on your way to teaching your child Spanish. All we can do is suggest and encourage. You are the one that has to make the commitment to put in the daily effort to teach your child, and we leave you with one last guarantee: though you will encounter challenges, we guarantee that this journey is more than possible and profitable not only for your child, but also for you.