Your young learner has completed Reception Year and is set to study English in a formal academic setting. How exciting!
Embarking on a quest for knowledge is seldom seen as an epic adventure, but that is exactly how early education should be thought of. Especially learning English!
As your progeny gains English language skills, s/he is indirectly stepping toward his place on the global stage.
The ability to read, write and speak English puts people like you and your little scholar among the more than a billion and a half English speakers around the world.
Closer to home: you, as primary educator, have a front row seat to witness and participate in your child's evolution to a fully functioning member of society.
Read on for the best local resources, Internet sites, and activities that will give your pupil the greatest advantage in his English courses.
Local English Language Enrichment Opportunities
Whether you want to steep your child into a world of wizardry and faeries or detective stories for young readers, there is only one destination for you: your local library.
A love of learning, the sequestered nooks / and all the sweet serenity of books. - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Studies show that reading to your child from an early age results in greater success in school, especially in mastering aspects of English such as grammar and vocabulary.
Even spelling skills are enhanced in students who have regularly been read to prior to attending school.
If your child is learning English as a second language, you will find a reading section and other resources meant especially for ESOL students.
At the library closest to you, there should be workshops, tutorials and other activities that can help build your young learner's overall English skills.
If you'd like, you can review books ahead of time and then check your selections out from the library.
Students enrolled in the UK's public schools are introduced to poetry and literature during the first year of Key Stage One.
Considering that, doesn't it make sense to take your child to the place where literature reigns supreme?
English for Academic Purposes
At the end of Reception Year, your student will have taken a qualifications test that, among other facets of elementary education, measures literacy and general English skills.
The English teacher should have communicated what level of proficiency your student has demonstrated with the language, and whether additional English language courses are advised.
If so, you might consider enlisting with an agency that specialises in teaching English to young learners.
Whether your child is an international student or a native English speaker, s/he can benefit from tutoring agencies which specialize in delivering English lessons that follow National Curriculum guidelines.
Considering your child will face a standard assessment test at the end of Year Two, you might keep an eye out for an agency that helps with exam preparation, as well.
If your student has been diagnosed with a learning disability such as dyslexia or ADD, s/he might benefit greatly from extracurricular help such as handwriting practice or role-playing games.
Holding a conference with your child's teacher could indicate what areas of language learning s/he is lagging in, such as grammar, vocabulary or spelling, and recommend agencies that can help.
By some reports, more than a quarter of Britain's students benefit from private tutoring. If your looking for an English tutor London, that percentage grows to nearly fifty!
Be aware that private tutoring fees are generally paid solely by the parents. If you are looking for long-term help in learning the English language, you might consider other options.
The British Council sponsors several programmes to help elementary English learning along.
You could direct yourself to your local council representative, or check out their web page. It is full of activities that can help your learner succeed in English classes.
Do you know where to find help and other tips for learning English?
Could you Child Learn English Online?
Education experts all agree: a student is more engaged when s/he is interested in the subject matter.
Here is a list of fun activities that will make your learner love English!
Rather than rote repetition of verbs and vocabulary, why not get your tot interested in studying English with facts about Britain?
The website Project Britain provides pages of stimulating reading and topics for discussion.
No subject is safe! From the Royal Guard to superstitions, you can find pages for them all... and each page leads to further learning links.
Cambridge English hosts a website dedicated especially to young learners.
Activities range from those designed to help develop writing skills to honing listening skills and perfecting speaking skills.
As your student progresses, reading and writing activities on their site get progressively more difficult - in accord with the importance of handwriting, even in these times when you type more than write.
On their web page, you can even find quizzes meant to gauge fluency in English speaking and reading.
To learn English, one mustn't always conjugate verbs and focus on exams.
Making learning entertaining and fun helps young students realise that English grammar does not have to be drudge work.
Why not play with spoken English?
The site FunEnglishGames provides amusing learning activities that cover the whole spectrum of English learning, from grammar quizzes to vocabulary building exercises.
You can watch videos, download worksheets and discover classroom activities.
You could even host a spelling bee!
Parent Support Organisations
If you have concerns about your child's literacy or English proficiency, it would be a good bet that other parents feel the same way with regard to their young English learner.
While these organisations do not primarily address young students learning English skills, they are all groups of parents who just may have some advice to help your child study English.
Most likely you will find people who are familiar with what to expect on Key Stage exams!
- Netmums is an online community that offers tips, help and advice with all aspects of parenting.
- You can find fun and educational activities for your child on their web page.
- Mumsnet is a similar site that incorporates a page dedicated to educational matters, and another one for recommending books.
- The Parenting Support Centre maintains a page exclusively for education, including a section on how to learn English for students of every age.
- Family Life is a national charity that offers help and advice on a variety of topics.
- Their site provides links to primary and secondary education resources.
With all of the free English help and resources available, you have countless ways to boost your child's language training!
Key Stage Examinations
Toward the end of Year Two and again in Year Six, your student will sit an exam that will measure his/her fluency and knowledge of the English language.
Of course, a good teacher will help you child acquire English skills, but it is up to you to provide a learning environment conducive to study.
To learn English well, you do not need to provide an immersion environment – although, if your native language is in fact English, that is exactly what you are giving your child.
If your child is an ESOL student, s/he would benefit from English immersion classes, and not just in an English school.
The Benefits of Personal Tutoring
Quite often it's evident that paying for tutoring is a big financial burden for the families but it's one that they see as a necessity. - Private English tutor, London
Key Stage testing in public schools has gotten more rigorous. In order to meet those milestones, the school curriculum has become more demanding.
Furthermore, growing awareness of learning disabilities in UK schools underscores the fact that not every child who comes from the same region and is the same age has the same educational advantages.
Especially for Key Stage One and Two English teachers, the heat is on to level the playing field so that every student in his/her class scores within the acceptable range on standardised tests.
The youngest students feel the pressure most of all.
For many parents, one on one tutoring is the single solution to all of modern education's troubles. Proof of that is given with the abundance of in-home tutors and tutoring agencies, especially those specialising in help with English.
And, if your child is an ESOL student, those statistics are especially prevalent.
If you are based in Manchester check our list of English tutors there.
Is private tutoring a 'keeping up with the Jones's' scenario, as some aver?
In fact, a personal tutor for English is one of the best ways to help your child succeed in Key Stage exams.
Not only because your English teaching professional is well-versed in grammar rules and the specific subject material the Key Stage exams test, but because a mentor adds a crucial, non-formal element to your child's learning.
Between you, your child's teacher, and other English specialists such as librarians and tutors, you will find it truly does take a village to educate a child.
Of course, Superprof tutors are ready to help with any English language teaching you might need.