Recent research suggests that for second language acquisition, children are more likely to reach the proficiency of a native speaker instead of adults. Plus, learning a language not only helps in practical and economic gains but also leads to a number of cognitive advantages. If you have kids learning Mandarin Chinese, you might want to help them. But the problem arises when we ourselves do not know the language. But there is no need to worry as I will discuss a few tips on teaching kids Chinese effectively.
Explore Online Resources
Although you don’t know Chinese, there is plenty of material available online for teaching kids Chinese. There are various websites which provide material specifically aimed at teaching kids. It is much easier for young children to understand Chinese characters if they are able to associate physical objects to them. You can find flashcards online or you can make them yourself and tape these all around the home on objects which they describe. It will create a more Chinese immersive environment for teaching kids and make learning Chinese characters seem much more approachable and fun. You can also create a game by asking your children to match Mandarin Chinese character flashcards to the objects in the house. Similarly, Chinese cartoons can prove very helpful in teaching kids. Cartoons with good and simple stories that contain repeated words, expressions, and a fun storyline to keep the attention of children are useful when learning Chinese. By using cartoons in small parts to deliver a lesson can be a very effective way to reinforce Chinese language learning and see some cultural elements at times.
Read Picture Books About Chinese Culture
Moreover, reading familiar children’s book in Chinese is a good starting point when we introduce the target language to young children. There are plenty of Chinese picture books like “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie” and “Goodnight Moon” available online. You can develop a habit of reading books to Children. These books will introduce Chinese culture to kids. It will help in understanding Mandarin Chinese in a cultural context. Try to create a target language-rich text environment by purchasing books in hard form and placing them in your home.
Visit Your Local Chinese Restaurants and Supermarkets
Another very effective way of acquainting yourself and your kids with Chinese culture is to visit Chinese restaurants and supermarkets near to your home. Frequent visits to such places will increase interest and understanding of Chinese culture to young kids. Try to help your children memorize the name of the Chinese dishes. It will not only aid in building vocabulary in Chinese but also will provide an opportunity to speak in Chinese with the staff. It can provide a real-time experience of conversing with Chinese native speakers.
Plan a Tour to China
One of the best ways to learn a language is to immerse yourself in an area where it is spoken. So you can plan a tour to China to enhance your and your kids’ language skills with real-time experience. It will help in understanding communication modes used by native Chinese. A physical visit to China is the best way to teach young kids about Chinese culture and language. Practical experience of a Chinese environment is the most effective way among all other mediums available for teaching kids Mandarin Chinese.