Kids soak up foreign languages like a sponge. And the earlier you start teaching them a foreign language, the faster they will master it.
Early exposure to a foreign language also improves a child’s learning abilities. According to a study, kids from Spanish families who started learning English at the age of 33 weeks could already produce 74 words and phrases after only 18 weeks.
But what’s the best way for a child to learn a foreign language?
Any type of exposure is good, but the best one is with a native speaker, which can, unfortunately, be quite expensive. So, today, we’re going to show you a few tricks, how to find a native speaker for your child to practice a foreign language for free.
Before we jump into the main part, let’s consider the reasons why native speakers are the best choice for learning a foreign language.
Vernacular is the version of a language spoken by ordinary people. It’s the modern version of the language, rich in expressions, constructions, and idioms, which enriches your speech and makes it more natural.
Schools often teach kids the basics – grammar and vocabulary. But what children often lack is proper pronunciation.
On the other hand, learning a language with a native speaker starts with pronunciation. Your child will be listening to the natural speech and absorb the pronunciation rules from the beginning.
Unlike with school classes, where kids can ask teachers a question in their native language, classes with native speakers don’t work that way. Your child will have to practice the language right from the start, which can be hard at first but has major benefits for language mastery.
Now, let’s discuss a few places where you can find a native speaker for free.
During the pandemic, free online classes are the most optimal way to get your child to learn a foreign language. Taking online classes is convenient, flexible, and enables one-on-one learning. Besides, you can definitely find classes that are free.
There are plenty of opportunities around. If your child is learning English, they can take online English classes via Duolingo, British Council, and many other resources that offer free kid-friendly learning opportunities.
Many native speakers have YouTube channels, where they upload lessons on various topics. Some of them even have entire courses for different language proficiency levels. Look for a native speaker whose classes are tailored for kids and use gamification, songs, and quizzes.
Another place where you can easily find a native speaker for your child is an app forum. Many apps have created spaces for their users to ask each other questions, communicate, and share language learning tips.
If your child is using a language learning app, they can search for a native speaker directly or offer language exchange opportunities, like in the example below:
Credit: Duolingo Forum
If your child is old enough and has mastered their native language, they can offer to teach someone their mother tongue while the other person teaches them their language. It’s a great way to get classes with a native speaker for free.
Social media interest groups are one more place where your kid can find a native speaker. Such communities are often created by native speakers who are also teaching their own language to help others find suitable resources.
Social media communities are also a place where your child can make friends with other native speakers. This way, your kid will have someone to practice a language with all the time, not just during a class.
As you can see, it is possible to find a native speaker to learn a foreign language for free. You can explore online language learning classes, search app forums, and social media communities. You may not find a native speaker who’s ready to work with your kid right away, but there’s a chance your kid will make useful connections to practice a foreign language on an ongoing basis.
Learning a foreign language sets your kid up for success from an early age. So, make sure your child has all the necessary resources to learn a foreign language as early as possible.
Author Bio: Ryan is a passionate writer who likes sharing his thoughts and experience with the readers. Currently, he works as the freelance writer; you can his articles here. He likes everything related to traveling and new countries.
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