There is nothing funnier to a young child, especially boys, than naughty words and toilet humour.
I remember the thrill of pronouncing “bad” words and, not least, the reaction of other people to my utterances. Tittering and giggles from other children, and peers and looks of disapproval and horror from most adults.
Surely the joy in toilet humour is partly the shock value? For our clever teacher, it became a learning opportunity…..
“One Monday last term, in our Mandarin immersion class in Bendigo, Victoria, we were playing an interactive game when we were pretending to be on a train.
As we were shuffling and chuffing along in our imaginary train, the real “tooting” started and a suspicious smell wafted through the group.
One of the little girls put up her hand and announced:
“I think someone has done a pop-off”. How do you say “pop-off” in Chinese? Tittering and giggling ensued as the expectant children waited for the answer from the teacher.
Our teacher told the children about nice and “yukky” smells in Mandarin and how to say “Excuse me!” after one has emitted a “pop-off”!
By this time the train had ground to a halt, and the passengers had disembarked and the session was finished in the garden, talking about which flowers smell nice and the manure smells not nice and so on!”
In case you are wondering how to say it……
真香（zhēn xiāng) – it smells good.
With the ever increasing demand for children to learn another language (and a concomitant rise in the number of language learning providers), why should you choose LCF Fun Languages to teach your child another language?
We’ve outlined what we believe are some pretty compelling reasons in this blog!
How does Fun Languages compare with other language providers?
- our people are leaders, our products are leaders , we are business leaders in the field of language learning
- we have a progressive language learning program compared with more traditional language providers
- our programs are less formal and, unlike traditional language education which concentrates on grammar and writing BEFORE speaking, our more contemporary approach is the other way around.
- WE CONCENTRATE ON GETTING KIDS USING THE LANGUAGE QUICKLY AND NATURALLY – grammar can come later!
- this approach to language learning means that our programs are relaxed, informal, fun and ENGAGING for the children
- it’s not like learning a language in school!
- Traditional methods employed in schools, while they may have resulted in children being able to conjugate verbs etc. – as many of you who learnt a second language in school as a child will attest – did not necessarily result in your being able to USE the language in conversation! Which really is the point isn’t it?
- our teachers “guide” the children alongside other kids, on their level
- we’re mobile which means that we set up – and can help you set up – language lessons and clubs in YOUR area – we come to YOU and with language clubs across Australia, we’re not bound by a single venue
Some of the Illawarra’s brightest young stars spent two days in January at the University of Wollongong absorbing new cultures and languages through the prestigious In2Uni Little and Early Learning Labs.
LCF Fun Languages Wollongong Manager, Nicole Weber, co-ordinated a Spanish Workshop for year 3 and 4 students. Along with learning some basic Spanish, they explored Gaudí’s Barcelona, danced some Flamenco and fought windmills with Don Quixote!.One young “veteran” of the In2Uni program happily described the Spanish fling as “the best workshop I have ever done!”
Fifteen lucky year 1 and 2 students immersed themselves in the Chinese culture, learning some basic Mandarin, trying Tai Chi, making traditional Beijing Opera masks and dancing dragons.
Nicole hopes to continue the programs with the University’s Learning Labs scheduled every July and January school holidays. “The kids and teachers had so much fun exploring the cultures; we hope to add maybe French or Italian programs in the future,’’ she explains.
For more information on the LCF Language Clubs currently running in the Illawarra or to enquire about starting one, contact Nicole on 0433 513 006 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also check out what other FUN language lessons for children are available in Wollongong and surrounds by visiting Nicole’s class timetable.
The second interview in our series on what being bilingual means to our Fun Languages club members and their parents.
Interview with Inga, Michael* and Jenny*
Inga and her husband are both from Germany and came to Australia 14 years ago.
What is your advice for other parents?
Inga: “The more languages you know, the better. The best advice is: you can teach your child even four languages at the same time but the most important thing is that the same person speaks the same language all the time. We do the same with our kids – we only speak German to them even if there are other people around who don’t speak German! Only if they need to (really) understand what we are talking about, we speak English. I think having one person (who the) children can always speak the same language to helps the kids to differentiate.”
Would you like them to speak another language?
“Yes – definitely. My sister speaks 7 languages fluently. I come from a family, where languages are highly recognised and considered as very important! Especially nowadays at the job market [sic], the the more languages you know, the better.”
Thoughts From A Travelling Club Manager
By Jim Callahan – Fun Languages Club Manager, Melbourne
“I have just returned from a month working in remote areas of Madagascar as an English/French interpreter and many aspects of my time there left a lasting impression.
Principal among those is how difficult life is for the majority of the population, who struggle every day just to access those things we consider as a given in Australia (safe water, electricity, work, basic health care).
What I also noticed was that, despite the generally low education levels (many children leave school after Yr 6 to work to help support their families) and illiteracy being a major problem, many of the people, both children and adults, could still manage a bit of spoken French in addition to their native dialect.
It demonstrated how knowing even just a few words in another person’s language can allow you a shared moment together. It also got me thinking about the old adage ‘use it or lose it’ and how our language clubs are a great weekly environment for ‘using it’!