10 Ways to Use a Digital Camera with Dual Language Learners

Enhance communication and learning with preschool dual language learners with these tips for using a digital camera:

10. Take photos of all children enjoying their time in your program to show parents who may not understand your language and don’t know if their child is happy.

9. Make a photo schedule so children of all language abilities can see what happens next in your program.

8. Print out photos of buildings in the neighborhood and glue them onto blocks to make recognizable representations of your local community for children to build

7. Use digital photos of things your children are interested in, glue to cardboard and make into puzzles and game pieces that can help ELL children make connections with real life concepts

6. Make a poster using photos to show steps in a process you are trying to teach – so children from any language can see the steps to good handwashing or how to do a somersault.

5. Record the fun of a field trip and use the photos to make a class book that can be translated in to all the languages of the classroom

4. Post photos of the children entering the classroom with their parent or guardian to remind them that soon they will be back with their mommy or daddy – even if you can’t yet explain it to them in words.

3. Use real photos to illustrate each letter of the alphabet – instead of cartoonish drawings. Be careful to try for multilingual examples. The Spanish word for Apple is manzana – so an apple might not be a good choice. But a photo of a boat can be accompanied by Boat, Barrco, and Batteau for English, Spanish and French.

2. Make a sign-in sheet with digital photos of each child and a place for them to practice writing their own name when they come in.

1. Give each child a photo of the entire group to take home so he can see himself as part of the group even though he may not always have an easy time communicating.

Read more in this blog post I wrote for the Fred Rogers Center: Technology for Young Dual Language Learners. 

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