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French Language Learning

Updated on May 20, 2019
Kenna McHugh profile image

A former teacher and tutor, Kenna enjoys helping children live a better life, understanding the importance of helping them become leaders.

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Whistlefritz “On Va Jouer” DVD is a successful way to conduct French language lessons for preschoolers. It is entirely in French, "Oh mon dieu!”

Teaching Foreign Language to Preschoolers

When my daughter was almost two, a pretty, friendly and kind Italian woman spoke Italian to her. My daughter smiled and looked pleased. The Italian woman said my daughter understood what she spoke in Italian.

My daughter is American and never heard Italian until, surprisingly, this nice woman spoke to her, and she understood.

An idea came to mind. Preschoolers easily understand a foreign language because their native language is still new to them.

Early Childhood Education

The National Parenting Association reports that babies learn foreign languages without difficulty. Teaching a foreign language to children at an early age benefits their abilities to learn a foreign language and any other language concepts.

A fancy word for knowing two languages is called bilingualism. In a New York Times article, "Why Bilinguals Smarter," being bilingual makes people smarter. It helps people become more aware of their language and develop an ability that keeps them cognitive of what is happening around them.

Vouloir c’est pouvoir - When there’s a will, there’s a way.

Basic French Language

My daughter never spoke about understanding the kind Italian woman, but she showed an interest in learning French when she turned four. Her ballet classes used French to describe the dance movements, and she picked those up quick, and she decided to learn more French.

I discovered Whistlefritz, a company that produces DVDs that teach foreign languages to kids, but adults use them, too. I will explain that later.

Whistlefritz believes kids learn foreign languages with ease, so the company dedicated a whole DVD to learning French for preschoolers, which I purchased for my daughter. They also produced other DVDs for preschoolers to learn a different foreign language than French like Spanish. French for Kids: On Va Jouer, Let’s Play was fun to watch, but I could not tell what they were talking about because it was all in French.

Years later, my daughter continued to learn French because she became a ballerina, so learning French fluently is her goal, and she is doing great with her French classes. She traveled to Quebec, Canada and practiced her French with ease. I base her success on the Whistlefritz DVD.

French for Kids

Do you think preschoolers can learn a foreign language with ease?

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Conversational French Lessons

After my daughter and I played around with the DVD, I decided to help myself out even though my daughter did great. I turned on the French subtitles. I understood the words better and did the lessons better, but my daughter was still better than me.

The French did not come easy for me, and my daughter mastered the lessons. We invited other kids to join us, and they picked up the French, right away. The ones who watched it were engaged. “Hélas!” It appears to be easier for kids.

The host, who is named Marie, on the DVD, engaged the kids because her expressive face entertained the kids. She kept the kids engaged and speaks French very well.

There is more to the DVD than learning how to be conversational in French. Five songs play strategically situated between the conversational pieces. As a result, the kids got with the program and sang along. They were singing French songs and laughing.

I continued to work with the kids and discovered each kid followed along with the DVD and easily interacted with the French questions. I had a hard time keeping up with the DVD. The kids were patient with me and encouraged me to keep trying.

After we finished the DVD, I decided you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Preschoolers learn French or any foreign language with ease. According to the National Parenting Association, once they reach the age of three, learning a foreign language is tougher. It gets tougher each subsequent year. The point is to start teaching your children a foreign language at an early age, preschool. They will enjoy it, too!

Practice Chart

I discovered this chart while looking for more Frenching teaching tools. I used this with my kids, and they learned the words right away.

I then crafted more French charts similar to the original one and used them with the kids. Eventually, the kids helped me make the practice charts, and learning French became a creative time for all of us.

Source

Fais toujours de ton mieux même si personne ne regarde. – Always do your best even if no one’s looking.

Videos Teaching Foreign Languages

I found this video on YouTube. I played it for my kids, and they had a hard time a first, and then caught on and did pretty good.

Conversational French Practice

I practiced with the DVD by myself and slowly started picking up the French words and their meaning. After I did this, I found it easier to work with the kids and help them learn French. I tried practicing with the video first, and that went better with the kids, too.

I suggest you do the same, so you have an easier time helping your kids learn a foreign language.

© 2014 Kenna McHugh

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    • Kenna McHugh profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenna McHugh 

      4 years ago from Northern California

      Interesting.

    • Anate profile image

      Joseph Ray 

      4 years ago

      Like LeslieAdrienne said, it is proven linguistic fact that are brains are programmed to acquire a language. At some stage in our development, this programming having accomplished its purpose goes away. This usually happens as you enter the teen years is my understanding, which in the USA when we start teaching kids second languages. The reason the USA has so few bilingual people compared to other countries is because of this actually. Other countries do start earlier than we do. If you learn a second language while this programming is still in your brain, it makes learning a third or fourth language later on easier as well.

    • Kenna McHugh profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenna McHugh 

      5 years ago from Northern California

      Interesting. Is the 21 years or 21 months?

    • LeslieAdrienne profile image

      Leslie A. Shields 

      5 years ago from Georgia

      When children are born, they have the capacity to learn any, and/or several languages. (God did it). The language or languages they are exposed to the most often are the languages they will learn.

      The physicality that is associated with creating the specific "sounds" of any language are strengthened through the use of a specific language. Once a primary language or languages has been established in a child, the ability to easily make unique sounds associated with other languages begins to atrophy. So, at birth a child can easily learn the pronunciations of any language, but by the time they are 21, "rolling the r" in Spanish becomes difficult....

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