Do you feel that your children need a little academic boost?
It can be difficult for preschoolers when they start primary school. The curriculum is different, the hours are longer, and of course, the stakes are higher.
Enrolling your child in an English enrichment class may be the solution to allow your child the freedom and room to level up. What kinds of English enrichment classes might be helpful to your child?
English Enrichment Class #1: Reading Programmes
Studies show that children who read for enjoyment have a much better grasp of grammar and have larger vocabularies than their peers. In fact, research has proven that regularly reading for enjoyment has a greater impact on a child’s educational success than his or her family’s socio-economic status.
Therefore, it is clearly very important that children get a head start with reading and to develop a positive attitude towards it. What better way to do that than to join English enrichment classes such as a reading programme for kids?
Literacy-targeted rewards have been found to be more effective in developing reading motivation than rewards that are unrelated to reading. The MindChamps Reading Programme is one such literacy-targeted course which seeks to generate authentic interest and desire in your kids for reading. By introducing age-appropriate reading material and positive motivation, your children will grow to truly love books and develop their own thirst for reading.
English Enrichment Class #2: Phonics Classes
Phonemic awareness, or understanding the sounds that English letters make, has been proven to have a strong positive effect on children’s ability to read and spell. Many children have problems reading because they are unable to decipher the connections between the letters and the words that they form. Phonics build that bridge of understanding for children so that they are able to read with ease and tackle longer, more complicated words fluently.
Fluency in reading refers not to the speed at which one reads but rather reading with accuracy. English spelling is often not standard and varies widely (think about words like ‘enough’, ‘fish’, and ‘pharmacy’ where the ‘f’ sound is represented by different letter combinations). Therefore phonics classes on their own may sometimes have some limitations in how effectively they can teach a child to read or spell fluently. Phonetic instruction is an integral part of the MindChamps Reading Programme, woven seamlessly into the curriculum to form a holistic part of the course.
English Enrichment Class #3: Creative Writing Programmes
Creative writing aims to stretch a child’s imagination, empathy, and expression. In fact, creative writing is not just about writing but also prods children to think critically by examining the functions of characterisation and plot to create a coherent and gripping narrative.
Children may love to read and may constantly have their nose in books, but an affinity for reading does not mean that it can be translated into the skill needed for writing. In that case, it is vital that we equip our children with the tools of writing and to help them along in their journey to produce, rather than simply absorb.
A good creative writing class for kids such as the MindChamps Writing Programme can help with this by making writing fun rather than a chore, or just another piece of homework. Rather than using ‘drill and kill’ strategies, the MindChamps Writing Programme is a creative writing class that instils a joy for writing in the children so that their motivation comes from within rather than extrinsically.
While good English enrichment classes for kids exist in many different shapes and forms, it is clear that there are some which can be very useful for your children. Primary school is not an easy transition for most and these classes can help make the process much smoother.
Written by JoBeth Williams