3 fun ways to incorporate Chinese in your child’s everyday activities
By Jia Ying, Ng on 08/05/2020
Parents often find it difficult to come up with ways to make learning of Chinese fun for their children.
Fret not! In this article, here’s 3 activities that you can incorporate into daily activities to make Chinese learning fun for your child.
It has been observed that most children are often drawn to hands-on activities such as games, colouring, drawing or even singing. Let us suggest some fun-filled, hands-on activities that you can weave into your child’s learning journey.
1. Introduce Chinese Songs
Do you realise that it is always easy to remember your favourite song lyrics but not the chinese spelling words?
Well, it has been scientifically proven that listening to songs does have a huge impact on our vocabulary library. So, it’s time to use songs to jazz up your child’s Chinese learning journey?
There are so many Chinese nursery rhymes that can be easily accessed from the Internet.
Here are some of our favourites:
- 头、肩膀、膝盖、脚趾头 (Chinese version of “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes”)
- 上山打老虎 (Tongue twister about counting 1 to 5, tiger and squirrels)
- 如果开心你就跟我拍拍手 (Chinese version of “If you’re happy”
Here’s another tip: Download these songs and loop them while driving your child to school or tucking him or her into bed.
Sooner or later, your child’s range of Chinese vocabulary will improve by leaps and bounds.
2. Write a grocery list
You can weave Chinese seamlessly into your family bonding time by bringing your child to the wet market or supermarket.
But, here’s the twist. You have to write a grocery list in Chinese.
By doing so, you can introduce the words to your child, and your child will identify the various items and bring the right one back to the shopping basket or trolley.
3. Watch their favourite programme
Is your child a Shimmer & Shine or Paw Patrol fan? Well, make your child watch their favourite songs or cartoons in Chinese!
Good news is there are Chinese versions of the same programmes – search Shimmer & Shine [亮亮和晶晶] or Paw Patrol [汪汪队立大功]. You don’t have to limit them to just dubbed shows; watching shows with Chinese subtitles helps as well to strengthen your child’s listening and comprehension skills.
For mandarin speaking parents, you may engage your child in a two-way Q&A session as a post-show activity as a recap on what your child has watched. This also acts as a platform for you to gauge your child’s understanding of the programme.
Lastly, encouraging your child to sing along to their theme songs in Chinese can also boost vocabulary retention. These activities will enrich family bonding time, and at the same time, it will boost your child’s confidence in speaking Chinese in the long run.