A Thousand Miles

Sometime last month I shared the story about this brilliant boy who at 8, can add and deduct in his head and has memorised up to the 5th multiplication. His only challenge was English. His command of the language was very poor even his parents shared their concern. 

So two months ago, I started him on Peter and Jane. Every sentence needed explanation. Once I explained, I asked him to replace all the noun with something he could relate to. Did this around twice a week + daily conversation as simple as ‘Please come here’, ‘Go to class’ and ‘How are you’.

I stayed consistent. Spoke to him everyday. Persuaded him to read with me. Once I saw he was slightly comfortable, I asked him to repeat whatever I said. With explanation of course. At the same time, I constantly reminded everyone around him to speak with him in English regardless if he understood or not.

This boy used to avoid me because he knew when I saw him, I’d want him to speak in English. Yes, he would dash at ‘Hello’.

Today, after 3 months in school and 7 days away from school, he was the first person who volunteered to speak in front of the class about his holiday, in English.

Stay consistent. Your children are learning from you. They may pick the language up at different paces, but they pick it up nonetheless. Stay consistent. Keep talking and keep encouraging them. Nothing out there can stop them once they know you have their back.



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