Early childhood education plays an essential role in preparing bilingual preschoolers for academic success in the future. Preschoolers who develop foundational language and literacy skills are more likely to begin kindergarten ready to learn how to read and write.
It is important for teachers to teach vocabulary to bilingual preschoolers at their level. Bilingual preschoolers need opportunities to hear and speak both languages throughout the day. The following strategies and methods are excellent ways to teach vocabulary to bilingual preschoolers.
Foster Social Interaction
Fostering social interaction between preschoolers and their classmates, as well as with their teachers and parents, is significant in teaching vocabulary to bilingual preschoolers. As kids negotiate interactions they are developing language skills. Teachers can pair English Language Learners (ELLs) with kids who have strong English language skills, and make sure that the kids are speaking in English. Additionally, teachers and parents can encourage preschoolers to express themselves by providing prompts and questions they can discuss and answer.
Read Bilingual Books
A fantastic way to teach vocabulary to bilingual preschoolers is reading bilingual books. Lectura Books has an array of bilingual books that preschoolers can benefit from. Each book highlights aspects of the Hispanic culture that preschoolers in the United States can relate to. Some books to consider include “Fun with ABCs – Lotería Style,” “Colors All Around,” “Spots on Jaguar,” “Amazing Mama,” and “My Super Cool Friends.”
Foster Literacy and Language Skills Across Languages
As children develop literacy and language skills in their first language, it is much easier to learn those same skills in their second language at the same time. Therefore, ELLs whose home language is Spanish, should be instructed in English at the same time. If parents’ of bilingual preschoolers are not proficient in English, teachers should encourage them to teach their children rhymes, songs, play words, and stories in Spanish.
Introduce Vocabulary in Everyday Life
Teachers and parents can easily introduce vocabulary to bilingual preschools in their everyday life. Upon rising parents can make an effort to state everything that their child is doing aloud, so that the child begins to associate words with actions. Likewise, at school, teachers can state what the kids are doing aloud and asking the questions about what they are doing.