Here are some of the motivational teaching strategies we use.• Storytelling and book reading engages the children's interest while captivating their imagination. Flannel board stories, rhythms and puppets bring vocabulary alive make solid connections.
• Drama creates open-ended opportunities to explore the language through role playing. Kids love to dress up and let their imagination run free!
• Music and movement triggers memory and happiness. Movement encourages freedom of expression.
• Games foster cooperation, social emotional development and friendships and reinforce vocabulary.
• Creative Art promotes creativity and self expression and sense of accomplishment.
• Culture is a vital part of language learning. We introduce children to foods, customs, and information about the world we live in.
Will a second Language Interfere With My Child's English Ability?
In most cases, learning another language enhances a child's English ability. Children can learn much about English by learning the structure of other languages. Experimental studies have shown that no long-term delay in native English language development occurs between children participating in second language immersion classes and those schooled exclusively in English.
In fact, children enrolled in foreign language programs score statistically higher on standardized tests conducted in English. A number of reports have demonstrated that children who have learned a second language earn higher SAT scores, particularly on the verbal section of the test. One study showed that by the fifth year of an immersion program, students outperform all comparison groups and remain high academic achievers throughout their schooling!
Maria Sierra, Director of De Colores Language Center, is a native of West Hartford. She began her career in early childhood education as a parent volunteer, in her son’s preschool classroom, over twenty-five years ago. Her professional expertise has been utilized by the Gesell Institute of Child Development located on Yale University, The Hartford Area Child Care Collaborative, and Center for Latino Progress.
Previous experience includes establishing and directing a bilingual preschool. Ms. Sierra has also held educational management positions for Head Start and School Readiness programs in the greater Hartford area, including directing a nationally awarded Family Center.
Family and Childcare Matters, LLC, Ms. Sierra’s educational consulting firm, presents workshops and training for early childhood education staff and parents throughout Connecticut both in Spanish and English. She is also an approved educational consultant for licensed childcare centers and works closely coaching local bilingual home daycare providers. Ms. Sierra’s expertise includes early language acquisition, supporting young dual language learners and their families, early literacy, and program development. De Colores Language Center unique Spanish language component comes from her belief that children, early in life, should be introduced to a second language which brings awareness our global community and promotes and stimulates brain development.