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How to teach your children the Russian language at home

Hello, dear student! This article will be more useful for parents-foreigners, who want to teach their children the Russian language. Today there are different manuals but they mainly describe the Russian grammar, so it's rather difficult for parents to learn it, not to mention little children. I often see families, where a child already speaks his/her native language but lives, for example, in Russia or plans to move with parents.

The first thing I recommend you to do is to play with your child with cards. It's not necessary to buy any materials, as not everybody has the opportunity and not every shop has them in stock. You can take a sheet of paper or a cardboard (it's even better as sheets will not be torn but keep their form). Split the cardboard into small squares and write or print the words on them. If your child is little, you can draw or print small pictures on these cards and stick them on near the words. For example:

The card - write down the word "мама" (mom) on it and draw or stick on your photo.

During first time a child will point at you, but you should say aloud the word "мама" and try to repeat it unless your child will repeat after you. Children at the age of 3-5 learn words very fast, so you can make a book. If you don't have the opportunity to take pictures from the Internet, you can draw them by yourself, for example:

You choose the topic "Погода" (The Weather), write out all words related to the weather in Russian:

Солнце [Sontse] - the Sun

Небо [neba] - the sky - and you draw your own picture to every word, you can color it and make clouds with faces

Дождь [dozh'd''] - rain

It helps a child to learn the material, it will be interesting for him to scrutinize and memorize. Don't forget to repeat words, try to pronounce them clearly and slowly to make your child hear the word:

Смотри, что это - Look, what's this (point your finger at the card) - это солнце - this is the Sun (you can say in your native language that the Sun is smiling or waving its hand, but pronounce the word "слово" necessarily in Russian)

You can make a picture out of cards, when your child knows the words on any topic, for example, on the weather - you can tell him/her a story using short sentences:

Солнышко светит, цветочки начали расти, бабочки летают над ними. В корзине много фруктов: бананы, яблоки, груши и виноград. Сейчас (say your child's name) будет их кушать. Вот такое у нас лето (show the picture) - The Sun is shining, flowers start growing, butterflies are flying over them. There are a lot of fruits in the basket: bananas, apples, pears and grapes. Now (name) will eat them. Here is our summer.

Words: солнышко, цветочки, бабочки, фрукты, бананы, яблоки, груши, виноград and лето are key words - your child should memorize them, then he/she should show and tell you the story. When a child names the word, for example "солнышко" and waits for help to name, for example, a verb - help him/her and say:"светит" - shining - and he/she should repeat after you.

You can play while you're having lunch or dinner with older children, when you are not in a hurry. You can also invite one more person to your game, to have competitiveness, for example:

- А давайте поиграем в слова, я вам буду загадывать слова, описывать их, а вы должны угадать это слово - And now let's play with words: I'll pick the words and you should guess them.

Он зелёный, мы любим кушать его с разными блюдами, его добавляют в салаты. Что это? - It's green, we like to eat it with different dishes and put it to salads. What is it?

Who guesses quicker, write him the plus and encourage. Play this game at regular intervals.

To learn the parts of body with a child (children like this topic very much), take a doll or favorite toy and show these parts on it, your child will repeat after you. Then you can play with him/her, who will show the part of body quicker - you name in Russian, for example, "уши" or "ушки" (ears) and he/she should point at his/her own ears. If your child makes mistake, you should point at his/her ears and explain in your native language. Sometimes, your child will speak in native language - then pretend that you don't understand and repeat in Russian. The process is quite labour-intensive, but the sooner you'll teach your children the Russian language, the better.

You can find Russian language schools and teachers:

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