You can find quick links to our previous posts in this series, including other language learning blog posts on our Language Learning Adventure page.
Egg BoxesWould you believe just how much learning you can get out of a humble egg box?! This cheap and cheerful resource will provide you with hours of fun! Little plastic tweezers are good for these activities, helping with fine motor skills and hand-eye co-ordination.
Ideas for using in language learning:
- Learn colours - Use small items such as buttons or beads to represent the vocabulary you have been learning. Mix them all up on a tray and let the children sort them into matching colours, filling each little egg box section with a different colour.
Say the colour names as you sort the buttons.
- Learn numbers - Have a selection of little objects that children can pick up and count into the egg box. You could label the bottom of each section with a number to aid number recognition too. As they become more confident with the vocabulary and with counting, call out a number in the foreign language you are learning, to see if the children can put the item in the correct place.
- Theme it - If you are learning about a particular topic, find small objects that represent it. For example, if you're learning about animals, use little plastic animals to represent the vocabulary. Ask the children to pick an animal and say its name in the foreign language, If they get it right, let them put it in the box. Can they get them all right in order to fill the box?
Eat!If you ask my daughter, this would be one of her favourite ways to learn...especially if there's cake involved! There are lots of ways to involve food in language learning - here's just a few yummy ideas to try!
Ideas for using in language learning:
- Eat culturally - We are lucky these days that you can find food from just about every culture and ethnic origin in the local supermarkets and speciality delis. Why not have a day where you taste foods that come from the country of the language you are learning?
Try foods from different countries.
- Learn fruit and veg vocabulary - This one is pretty self explanatory really! If you're learning about healthy eating or just learning the names of fruit and vegetables, there's no better way than a hands on approach! How about placing them all on a tray and covering with a tea towel. Take an item away and ask the child to say the name of the missing food in the foreign language.
- Learn through stories - Stories such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Supertato and Kitchen Disco are great for introducing food. Even if you don't have copies of these stories in the foreign language you are learning, you can still use them as a stimulus for learning languages. And if you struggle getting your children to try new foods like me, then this is a fab way to try to introduce it!
- Messy play - A quick Pinterest search will bring up so many ideas for messy play where food is used. The messy play trays can be themed to suit whatever subject you are learning about. For example, learn winter vocabulary using marshmallows, chocolate drops/raisins, pretzel sticks and icing to make little edible snowmen.
My youngest making marshmallow snowmen at messy play.
There are so many ways that food can be incorporated into your language learning adventure. What are your favourite ways to use food in learning?
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Finding joy in the little things: My youngest absolutely loves messy play activities, particularly ones involving food! She's a girl after my own heart obviously! I love watching her explore the new textures and tastes, and have fun whilst she's learning. Just a shame she's not so receptive when it comes to trying new foods for tea! Haha!
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