It’s a well known fact that children pick up languages far faster than us adults, so of course a great time to start learning basic words and sentences is while they are still young and their brains are like sponges.
Emmy can already count to 10 in both French and Spanish and knows many basic French sentences already (she is 7), she doesn’t learn French at school but we have been teaching her a few basics.
She can say:
- Hello – Bonjour
- Goodbye – Au revoir
- My name is Emily – Je m’apelle Emily
- Thank you – Merci
- How are you? – Comment allez-vous?
- I’m very well – Je vais tres bien
- count to 10
She is also learning a little Spanish at school and knows a few simple sentences which she often uses at home.
Heathrow has teamed up with economists at the CEBR to reveal French, German and Mandarin to be the top 3 languages useful for children to learn to boost their future career prospects.
To help inspire children to learn these languages over the Easter holidays, Heathrow has created packs of Mr Adventure themed flashcards, available for families to download online at Heathrow.com/events or pick up for free at information desks across all terminals over the Easter holidays.
With Heathrow expecting a record 868,000 passengers over Easter weekend and 200,000 extra families set to travel, the UK’s hub airport today announced its Little Linguists initiative, which aims to inspire children to learn new languages.
In partnership with the Centre for Economics and Business Research and Opinium, Heathrow has studied the role languages currently play in children’s lives as well as identifying the languages children should learn to set them up for maximum opportunities in adulthood. The findings revealed French, German and Mandarin as the three languages that should be learnt to best set kids up for life in ten years’ time, with language skills expected to add up to £500 billion to the economy by 2027.
With over 200,000 families expected to travel through the airport this Easter, the ‘Little Linguists’ initiative should be a great way to get children learning.
Flash cards are a great way of helping children to pick up phases very quickly and these cute ones are not only bright and colourful but are small enough to fit into your bag to look at while eating dinner or awaiting your plane.
Here are 5 expert tips to help teach your children the most beneficial languages for their future:
- Teach through repetition to help your children become familiar with the way the new words sound
- Play games in the foreign language to keep learning fun (e.g. Pictionary or I-Spy)
- Encourage kids to watch TV shows and listen to pop music from the country of the language they are learning
- The more input from native speakers, the better so holidays are the perfect time to practice
- Practice with Heathrow’s Passenger Ambassadors before your flight – they speak 39 languages between them!
As well as the Little Linguists initiative, the airport has a number of family-friendly offers during the Easter holidays, including ‘kids eat free’ at restaurants, soft play areas and appearances by Mr Adventure himself. To learn more about Heathrow’s range of family friendly initiatives visit: http://www.heathrow.com/family