The Dirty Dozen - Twelve tips on Teaching Homeschool Teens (Part one of three)

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In America, the most useful second language is Spanish, so I hope these 12 days help you engage and have a SUPER FUN stress free time of learning along with your teen. I have 5 kiddos, and each of them have put forth various amounts of effort In learning their second (and some third!) language. When they WANT It, man, there's no STOPPING them! And when they don't, it's VERY difficult to help. So.... here are the DIRTY DOZEN - simple tips to help you and your high schooler acquire a second language - because they WANT TO!

TEACHING TEENS TIP #12: Involve them in the curriculum choice. I say you need a text, an instructor, and access to both, EASILY. Video classes are better than audio only at the scholar level. Apps are NOT helpful other than giving you a dopamine hit. (More about that here.) Let them research the options, weigh the costs and time requirements, and then jump together on getting started.
Get their buy in! So - I learned FRENCH In High School - it was a good experience - but not super helpful. Then I tackled Spanish at college, and it was MUCH MUCH harder. Why? Because I didn't have the care from the professor, and it was MUCH too fast - the expectation of me knowing something was erroneous - I only knew French. My French teacher cared about me DEEPLY, and I knew It!
I FINALLY broke into getting B's in my second semester at college, which had already put my scholarships at risk. The stress was enormous.
What was your experience with foreign language learning? Good? Bad? It makes a difference! Check out my options on Let them check it out!
TEACHING TEENS TIP #11: The second tip is pretty simple - keep lessons short. If the student Is dawdling, give him a timer. Set It for 20.
Tell them if he dawdles during the twenty minutes, we'll hit it again for another 20 minutes later. If you can SEE he's putting In effort, reading aloud, studying, paying attention, LISTENING and repeating - you can SEE and HEAR acquisition - when the 20 minute timer goes off, he is DONE DONE DONE!
This trains your student (and YOU!) to work efficiently, expect results and look eagerly toward an achievable goal - just putting forth EFFORT for 20 minutes! What a GREAT goal! We should all be able to give 20 minutes, RIGHT?
We used this rule when our five kids were little and we needed to clean before daddy got home. It was ALWAYS effective. Sometimes we didn't get it done. But those 20 minutes were WAY more effective than a lazy hour.
TEACHING TEENS TIP #10: Remember how I took Spanish In college, after having three years of high school French. I was literally the ONLY student who had ZERO experience In Spanish. It was awful. I was sitting there with students who had been studying and speaking Spanish for YEARS, and I was lost.
My level Is X. Your level Is ALWAYS X -- what is +1 for you? For them?
I should have known, I should have.....blah blah blah. But the truth was, X + 10 was the bar, and I couldn't achieve It. Find out where your student Is. And then reach just ONE level higher.
Also, don't repeat or review. That's SOOOOOOOOoooo boring! If you know colors, please please please don't begin with Spanish colors. X + 0 is just ALMOST as bad as X + 10.
What's something you're good at stepping up - leveling It up... and what's an area you're sort of bad at jumping In too much, too far, too quick? How can we level It back? How can I help?
TEACHING TEENS TIP #9: Make sure they make it PERSONAL!
In addition to every vocabulary word or phrase they tackle, be sure they have a place to store the words THEY look up - a paper dictionary Is the BEST method - the process of looking up the words gives them opportunities to see HUNDREDS of other words In the process, and enjoy the word above and below It, and helps those synapses to FORM and STAY formed.
To keep it "chunky and light," We use the Skinny Book In my classes, online (video course) as well as in person. Here's a video to show how fun they are to use!

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