Language learning is a key element for this age group. During their first three years, children acquire both an active and a passive vocabulary.
Developing motor skills and the ability to move around is crucial for language learning. It allows children a differentiated perception, giving them the opportunity to learn things about themselves and their environment, find the right terms and express these using language. In other words, they learn to associate words with objects.
As nursery school teachers, we create the right atmosphere to ensure children enjoy talking. This comes about if the children feel comfortable and accepted. As nursery school teachers, we show interest in each child and what they are trying to say. We take the time to play with each child, tell them stories and read picture books with them. We listen to them and let them express themselves. Singing together also helps a great deal with language development.
The children see us as their role models. We therefore make every effort to be a good role model when it comes to language, making sure we speak nicely and clearly. We speak in full sentences and choose our words to suit the age group. We look at the child when we are speaking and talk through our everyday actions. If a child makes mistakes when talking, we correct them by repeating what they were trying to express in the correct way.
The English language
Our establishment is a bilingual German/English daycare centre. We draw on research that has proved that the younger the child, the easier it is for them to learn a foreign language.
English-speaking and German-speaking nursery school teachers communicate exclusively in their own mother tongue with the children. Since children are much less inhibited when they are infants, they can learn foreign sounds and syntax a lot more quickly and informally.
Day-to-day life at the kindergarten takes place in both languages. Your child is not yet able to consciously understand that this is a language they are not used to speaking and hearing at home. We do not, however, place any special emphasis on the other language but use it as it comes naturally.
The foreign language nursery teachers speak and sing slowly and clearly, in a friendly way but always ensuring they are grammatically correct. Right from the start, your child will connect the individual nursery school teacher with their own intonation.
Whether they come from a monolingual or bilingual home or environment, your child will rarely be able to answer the foreign language nursery teacher in the foreign language. But they will very soon start to understand complete sentences or explanations given by the nursery school teacher. When they do start to answer, they are sure to start by answering in their first language or mother tongue.
Our aim is to contribute towards European development with our bilingual daycare. Using a foreign language makes people lose their fear of foreigners. The children learn to live with different cultures and languages on a daily basis, making them naturally ready to be tolerant towards the “unfamiliar”.