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Latest Trends in Language Learning

Latest Trends in Language Learning

In our globalized and diverse economy, proficiency in one or more foreign languages is often seen as necessary for employment. In many cases, this results in an investment in learning for employees. But the done-to-death ways of bygone eras can put the most dedicated of people to sleep.

So, here are some latest trends in language learning to spice up the learning process!

Online Language Learning

With the rise of technology and internet access, online
language learning has become very popular. There are many language learning
platforms and apps available that offer courses in various languages. These courses are
accessible anywhere and anytime, making it easier for people to learn at their own pace
and schedule.

Gamification

Gamification has been a popular trend in language learning for a while
now. This learning method uses games and activities to make language learning more
fun and engaging. Many language learning apps and platforms incorporate gamification
in their courses to make the learning experience more enjoyable.

Personalization

Personalization is becoming increasingly important in language
learning. Many language learning apps and platforms use algorithms to create
personalized learning paths for learners based on their proficiency level, learning style,
and goals. This approach makes learning more effective and efficient.

Virtual and Augmented Reality

Virtual and augmented reality technologies are being
used in language learning to create immersive and interactive learning experiences.
Learners can practice their language skills in real-life situations, such as ordering food in
a restaurant or navigating a city, in a virtual or augmented environment.

Collaborative Learning

Collaborative learning is a trend that is gaining popularity in
language learning. This approach involves learners working together to achieve a
common goal, such as completing a task or solving a problem. Collaborative learning
helps learners practice their language skills in a more natural and interactive way.
These trends are making language learning more accessible, engaging, and effective.

Which one do you think is meant for you? Tell us in the comments!

Bilingual Babies: Early Childhood Exposure to Language Learning

Bilingual Babies: Early Childhood Exposure to Language Learning

Most parents know that learning a second language is beneficial for children. But studies show that the normal brain development of babies and toddlers makes this an ideal time for them to be exposed to another language. Here is why children who are often thought to be too young to learn a second language benefit from being exposed to an additional language.

Research published by Cornell shows that the immersion method of language learning is effective at any age, it is more effective with very young children. Children who learn a second language under the age of five use the same parts of their brain as to learn their native language. This means that speaking their second language feels more natural to them.

Other studies have demonstrated that children who learn a second language at a young age have better concentration and problem-solving skills.

Of course, this all needs to be understood within its wider context. Yes, learning a second language is excellent for young children, but so is reading in their first language, creative play, playing outside, cooking, and many other things that busy parents of preschoolers won’t have unlimited time to do with their children. The good news is that children benefit from even relatively little exposure to a second language.

Another study states that exposure to a second language for one hour a day in infancy could make it much easier for the child to become bilingual later on. Obviously, a baby is not going to speak the second language for that full hour, they only need to hear that language. While it is best if they hear the language from a person, listening to music or audio books will also help their language development.

Although a baby is obviously too young to be taking language classes, taking a few classes yourself will equip you to speak to your child about animals, colours, and their toys in the language you’d like them to learn. Doing this consistently will set them up for success when they do start taking language lessons, even if you never become fluent yourself.

How Learning a Second Language Changed My Life

How Learning a Second Language Changed My Life

Learning how to speak another language can change your life in many ways. From opening up job opportunities, making international friends, or watching foreign films without subtitles, there are many advantages to being bilingual.

New studies show that people who know more than one language are better problem solvers, and they also use both sides of their brains to process information, which leads to improved memory skills. Speaking a second language also gives you access to diverse cultures, ideas, and different perspectives on life. If you don’t know what I mean by this, try going to dinner with someone from a country where Spanish isn’t the main language and have them order for you… in Spanish!

Here are three ways learning a second language changed my life.

More open-minded

More than anything, learning a language has taught me to be more open-minded. I mean, if I can communicate with someone in their native tongue, maybe that person is worth getting to know, right? It’s hard not to feel motivated when you realize there are cultures and lifestyles that you’re missing out on by not taking advantage of a second (or third) language.

Better at planning things

I learned how to plan, and then actually follow through with those plans. It’s hard to be motivated sometimes, but if you lay out your goals, even just 10 minutes of practice on Duolingo or lessons with my favorite tutor will get me excited. When you learn a language online, you can do it alongside other things—watching TV, listening to music, or studying for an exam. It is super easy to keep that motivation up.

More confidence

I’ve found that I feel more confident in myself when I can communicate with people, because being able to speak in another language shows you how much of yourself and your life is influenced by languages. It’s something that might not be noticed, but once you can speak in another language, you understand how many words and thoughts came from other languages. Even if it’s an online language course, learning what words mean makes me feel more confident about my communication skills.

I could go on and on with more reasons why learning a second language is so important nowadays, but I would rather have you see for yourself. Don’t think about it too much and go for it.

Visit MyCoolClass and find a language tutor to broaden your horizons and opportunities today!

13 Activities to Help Your Child Study

13 Activities to Help Your Child Study

Parents often ask how they can help their child review what they’ve been learning in class. One way to do this is by using flashcards. Flashcards are fun and versatile learning tools that can be used for a variety of games and ESL levels. Here are just a few of them.

Memory games
Use 3 cards, or more for older, more capable children. Place the cards face up, and then turn them over and try to remember which card was where.

Timed memory game
Put the flashcards face up, and then turn them over. Set a timer and ask the student to find a particular card. If they choose the wrong one, they need to put it face down again and keep trying to find the card.

Noughts and crosses
Flashcards can be used to play some common pen and paper games, like tic tac toe. Place three lines of three cards face up. If you’re using alphabet cards, you can ask your child to say a word starting with one of the letters. If you’re using word cards, you can your child to read the word or use it in a sentence. When the child does this correctly, they can take the card or put a removable sticker on it.

Make a story or word
This is a fun way of playing with the English words, letters, and concepts your child knows well. Take some flashcards at random and place them face up on the floor. Ask your child to make a word, sentence or story with the words or letters on the cards.

Quick glance
Quickly hold up the card and then turn in face down so your child can’t see it. Ask your child to guess what is on the card. If they’re not able to, hold it up for a little longer and then turn it face down again. Keep playing until they can tell you what is on the card.

Categories
Hold up a card so only you can see it. Start saying things that are in the same category as what is on the card. For example, if the card says “B” you could say “banana”, “ball” and “bear”. If the card says “verbs” you could say “running”, “singing”, “raining”. Your child needs to guess what is on the card.

Treasure hunt
This is a fun game for energetic children. Hide some flashcards around the room and ask your student to find them. There are a few variations of this game. You could play “hot and cold” by telling your child they’re hot when they’re close to a card and cold when they’re far away from any cards. You could also hide some “trick” cards. Tell your child a word or sentence like “book” or “he read yesterday” and ask them to find the flashcards with those letters or words. But you’ll have hidden other cards with different words or letters on them, and your child needs to identify the correct ones.

What’s missing?
Spell out a word except for one letter and the student needs to say which one is missing. To make this more challenging, take out more letters. You can also use this game for making sentences.

Odd one out
This game is a good way of practising grammar concepts, but it can also be using for identifying rhyming words or even words in your child’s favourite English story or poem. Place some cards face up and ask your child to identify which one is different. To make sure your child is learning, ask them to tell you why the card is different.

Snap
The good thing about this game is that you don’t need much space to play it, and it is something you can do while you’re waiting for a train or at a restaurant and trying to keep your children entertained while the food arrives. Give every player several cards and you each take turns putting them down, face up. When a child puts down a card that “matches” or is in the same word category, they say “snap!” and win the game.

Is it a….?
Young children often really enjoy this game. Hold up a flashcard and ask your child if it is something different. So you could hold up a “yellow” card and ask them if it is a sun, purple or an animal.

Find me a…
Give your child a set of flashcards and ask them to find particular cards, like the “R” or “ball” card. For more advanced learners, you can ask them to find you a word in a certain category, like a colour or a noun.

Musical flashcards
This is another good one for energetic students. Place the cards face up on the floor and play their favourite songs. Your child needs to walk, jump or dance around the room until you stop the music, and then they need to tell you what is on the nearest flashcard and a little bit more about it. For example, if the card says “M” your child could say “M mmmmm, mouth.” If the card says “green” your child could say “green, my favourite colour” or “green, like my school bag.”

There are many flashcard games you could play with your child to review what they’re learning in class.

Try a few of these and see which ones you both like!

Language Learning Activities for the Modern Learner

Language Learning Activities for the Modern Learner

Knowledge of more than one language opens up many opportunities for you in business, travel, and culture. As more and more jobs require workers to be multilingual, now’s the time to make an investment in your future by learning a new language. And it’s easier than ever! With today’s extensive online resources, you can immerse yourself in foreign languages through virtual reality activities and live conversations with language tutors from all over on learning platforms such as MyCoolClass. Learning a language can be fun and there are tons of free resources online for language learning activities that you can use to teach yourself or your children how to speak a new language.

You can also try these simple language learning activities:

Immersion Activities

Immersion is a key to language learning. Unless you are living in a foreign country and do not have access to your target language, immersive language learning activities may be more challenging than you might expect. You can still find ways to immerse yourself in your target language. Try immersing yourself in a culture or topic that uses or is based on your target language by. One example of an immersion activity is listening to songs in your target language while you’re doing housework or working out at the gym. Music lyrics are usually pretty easy to understand because they’re not as dense as articles and books, so you’ll get practice hearing how native speakers use their own words. Just remember immersion doesn’t mean ignorance—you should always try to learn new vocabulary from songs with lyrics dictionaries available.

Cultural Events

One of my favorite ways to learn new words and improve my language skills is to attend cultural events. At these events, you can speak your native tongue while being surrounded by natives who can help you navigate your way through unfamiliar territory. I also get to practice communicating in my target language by speaking with others about their culture, or simply by enjoying art that reflects their history. These days, due to technology, it is possible to even attend this type of event without ever leaving your home.

Create Your Own Experience

Learning a language is a lot more than just sitting in a classroom (Or a virtual one). If you want to practice your language skills, you’re going to have to get out there and meet people who can help you sharpen your skills. Luckily, there are plenty of opportunities to do so—and they don’t all have to involve ordering strange food or exploring another country. You could find a language exchange partner and there are also many apps in which you can connect with people around the world who are just as eager to practice with you! You can also surf Facebook groups related to languages, and I am sure you will find somebody to meet with and practice together. Making your way to practice through exchanges is great because you meet tutors and others to learn from directly, in a positive and relax environment, just like daily life conversation takes place.

These are some ideas that you could at to your learning routine. Remember that consistency is the key in this process and it’s a trip in which you can have multiple guides. At the end of the day, it’s your experience and you are the one who is holding the steering wheel.

At MyCoolClass we have some of the best guides from around the world teaching over 30 languages, subjects, and other fun skills. Find your perfect teacher and start learning a new language today!

Language learning activities
Language learning activities

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