We get a lot of questions every year from parents about how they can prepare their students for entering Arco Iris. Many of our students are new to Spanish, and we have much to share to help make this transition a smooth one. The good news is there are a few months to go, the bad news is that summer break is fast approaching and academic routines usually get tossed out the window.
We have ideas and suggestions for you. Here is a list of postings we have written that may be of interest. If you have questions, please post them here, we’ll try to respond timely.
Online Spanish resources – math, science, art, reading, and more!
Second Language Development – presentation from our friend and parent, Dr. Steven Thorne. This is a favorite talk of ours and the slide show about second language development is very informative.
Online Interactive Spanish Storytelling – a few online sites for interactive Spanish storytelling.
Supporting our beginning Spanish readers – Did you know that listening to Spanish music, and even reading in English (or their first language if it’s not English), can help with Spanish learning? Check out our tips from our post back in 2010.
What Parents Want to Know about Immersion Programs – A favorite article from Eric Digest. A must read, with many tips on how long the second language process takes and how to support it at home if you don’t speak the language.
In the end, we recommend having fun with it – listen to books on tape, listen to children’s Spanish music (the library has a huge selection), cook up some new foods and read about them, or watch your favorite movie but in Spanish.
But most importantly, read! Reading is a skill that is developed across languages. So, if your child does not know Spanish, read in English. The love of books and learning will help in second language development. Keep it light and have fun!