on point on Flickr.
The kids I taught once every two weeks in the kindergarten remembered what I taught them a lot more than the kids I saw on a weekly basis. The kids I taught in Korea three times a week retained even more.
It isn’t that every two weeks and three times a week are magical time spans that facilitate language learning. The teachers in the kindergarten reviewed the material with the kids during the time I was away and the Korean kids were studying daily. The kids I saw weekly were not. No secret: Practice makes perfect.
There’s a lot of negatives to be said about the emotional and social effects of putting young children in the “Results first” educational environment that you find in Korea but I’m not in the mood to write a proper essay about it. It was a lot different in Japan, which was far more easy-going about these things. At least with children. The grind doesn’t begin until puberty for them and even then ESL is peripheral to a lot of it. I guess that’s the difference between an export economy (for now) like Korea and an import one (for now) like Japan. Knowing a second language is far more important in the former than the latter.
One universal: No matter how much English they can or cannot speak, they would always use their native language to tell you things and the idea that they could speak the language far better than you could was always something they had trouble comprehending. I suppose there are worse ways for kids to learn that adults are not all-wise and infallible. Far worse ways.
And that’s why she was telling me about the huge Asian spider that was hanging out above me in rapid fire Japanese.