2 Feb · Karen Nemeth · No Comments

Fast 5 Gamechangers for Using Bilingual Alphabets

We want all preschool children to start learning the alphabet. That’s not always easy when they come to preschool with different language backgrounds. It can be confusing for a Spanish speaker to see a picture of “una manzana” (Spanish word for apple) next to the letter A while the other kids are saying “aaah”.  This multilingual …

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20 Jun · Karen Nemeth · No Comments

Summer Learning Day for Preschool DLLs

by Karen N. Nemeth Diego and Mei-ling may be small, but they worked hard to learn in their preschool this year. They did a lot of preschool learning, social learning AND language learning, but what will happen to all that knowledge over the long weeks of summer leading up to the first day of kindergarten? …

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25 Sep · Karen Nemeth · One Comment

Ten MORE Ways to Improve School Attendance with DLLs and Families in Mind

By Karen Nemeth Reports about the damaging effects of poor school attendance in early childhood education, particularly kindergarten, have been in the news lately.  Whenever that happens, lists of solutions soon follow.   I am concerned that most of these solutions are focused on the superficial symptoms rather than on the root causes.  If we really …

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18 Jan · Karen Nemeth · 2 Comments

Considering Children Who are DLLs in Emergency Planning

Events in the news have many schools and programs taking a second look at their emergency plans. Let’s think what an emergency – or even a simple fire drill – must be like for a young child who doesn’t fully understand the language! 10. Establish class buddies – a more experienced, more fluent or more …

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18 Jul · Karen Nemeth · No Comments

Connecting with Diverse Members of Your Community

10. Get to know the diverse languages and cultures represented in your local area and include them in the images and messages you share about your program.  You want the members of your community to know that your program will be a welcoming place for families who come from different languages and cultures. 9. Make …

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28 Mar · Karen Nemeth · 5 Comments

Top Ten Factors for Successful Professional Development!

Top Ten Factors for Successful Professional Development! by Karen Nemeth, Ed.M. A large part of my work is doing professional development about teaching young DLLs and collecting valuable resources here at Language Castle.  I’ve traveled the country and worked with hundreds of programs.  I am always mindful that my visit is so temporary, but what …

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18 Sep · Karen Nemeth · 2 Comments

Tips for Translating Materials for Multilingual Preschool

10. Say less!! Use this opportunity to pare down to the absolute minimum of messages and words needed to save money and time on multilingual translations. 9. Simplify – Make translation more manageable and help those with low English literacy too. Use short sentences, simple words. Say what you mean – exactly. Remove lingo, slang, …

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18 Aug · Karen Nemeth · No Comments

Sources of Help for Pre-K Dual Language Learners

10. Start by getting to know the language environment of the family. Who speaks which language? What is their country of origin? What are some of their holidays and cultural traditions? Be responsive in your program. 9. Beyond a home language survey, get to know pre-K families personally through home visits, meetings or phone conversations. …

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18 Mar · Karen Nemeth · No Comments

Ways Teachers Can Learn Children’s Home Languages

10. Make a list of 10-20 survival words like eat, nap, bathroom, hurt, help, stop, and ‘mommy will be here soon’. Print on a card and send home with a mini-recorder so parents can write and record pronunciations their child will recognize. 9. Get some bilingual children’s music. You can find songs on CDs or …

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18 Mar · Karen Nemeth · No Comments

Must-Have Multicultural Items to Place on Your Order List

10. Books in all the languages you expect to encounter – at least 10 books per language. • 9. Digital camera and supplies for making books/games/magnets/posters that connect with real world experience and can be translated into any language. 8. Authentic music from the cultures of your families – not just the same languages. 7. …

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