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ESL forum > Teaching material > Help for my own children please!    

Help for my own children please!



alexanderelwood@hotmail.com
United Kingdom

Help for my own children please!
 
Hello,
 
I live abroad and we have four children. They īve started school now (not the one I work at) and, of course, they are bilingual. However, the rather rubbish school is making them go to English lessons with the rest of the class - despite the fact that they speak it fluently! Needless to say they are bored and frustrated. They are made to learn and write words like īMum ī and īdog ī when they are reading books at home!
 
After some persuasion the school has agreed that we can give our children their own books to read and study in the English time...something for young English learners that has written comprehension and preferably puzzles, and so on. Something hopefully fun...maybe including some popular characters (superheroes etc). Something without listening or speaking exercises.
 
I īve never used such a book, and anyway, the kids I teach are teenagers. My kids are 8,6 and 3  (and 1 and a half, but he īs not reading yet ).
 
Can anyone recommend a book for this purpose? It īd be for the 8 and 6 year olds, so two books.
 
Many thanks in advance 

21 Jan 2018      



joannajs
Poland

Hi Alex,
 
Your situation is atypical, hence the teachers have a problem  I am a bit puzzled too. The first thing that comes to my mind is perhaps the Fun for series by Cambridge University Press either for Movers or Flyers. Or perhaps Storyfun for - which is more like reading comprehension with exercises. Thematic, with puzzles. Fun for has listening though sometimes and no superheroes. Not the best of ideas but perhaps a starter?
 
best,
 
joanna 

21 Jan 2018     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

What about Harry Potter? My lads were 8 and 6 when the first one came out and they loved it (so did I). If you join TES, you can download some resources to go with it. There are plenty of free ones and some paid which look really good.
Or something generic that can accompany any reader

21 Jan 2018     



Minka
Slovenia

I īd recommend texts for reading comprehension from https://www.readworks.org/. They are meant for native speakers, but I think it īs American English. There is a great variety of texts for different levels, on different topics, pairs of texts, you name it. And a nice search engine to look them up. 

21 Jan 2018     



olaola
Italy

I don īt understand.... if you think that the school is "rubbish" why don īt you send your children to another school? As teacher I don īt  think is fair  you calling a school that way, I think they are doing their best, maybe they are not used to bilingual pupils

21 Jan 2018     



alexanderelwood@hotmail.com
United Kingdom

We are sending them to another school, from September. It cannot be done before. But we live in a village in the middle of nowhere and the other school is 25km away. Since we have a baby and one child at nursery, plus I work, it means we will have to divide three ways every morning for the next ten years or so, not to mention the cost and the time. We do not have any family here, so somehow we will have to make it work.The only bus goes two hours before school starts, so we will have to drive, or the kids will have to arrive at school at 6am and wait for it to open. But we are, of course, prepared to drive for them. Yes, I am entitled to say the school is rubbish. It is not a great leap of teaching understanding to recognise that they are wasting their time. I have already suggested that the school give them some worksheets from the upper classes, but they didn īt want to do it. I suggested they sit in with the older classes for English, but they didn īt want to do it. I suggested that they allow them to go to the library, but that was out too. So, finally, I asked them if I could print out, or provide some educational English papers for them to fill in at the back of the class. They agreed to that, since I am an English teacher and it doesn īt give them any extra work.
 
In my school we teach bilingual children and they are put into older classes for native language. I use them (and the other teachers too) to read dialogues etc so the students can hear more accents from native speakers. There are several bilingual children around, some speak German or Russian, so it is not so unusual.
 
Thanks for your opinion. 

21 Jan 2018     



FrauSue
France

We use the Ladybird Read it Yourself series with my (bilingual) daughter and it īs great. There is a list of comprehension questions at the end of each story. Perhaps more for the 6 year old than the older child? What level are they at?
The Oxford Reading Tree series is excellent too. Look at the "Time Chronicles" series.
 
These are series of shorter books, not chapter books, but they offer lots of rich opportunities for open-ended writing activities based on the stories. They correspond to the reading level systems used in UK schools.
 
If your older child is onto chapter books, try "Nate the Great" or anything by Anne Fine. They are the first examples which spring to mind.
I also love "The Owl who was Afraid of the Dark" by Jill Tomlinson for children who have gained some confidence with chapter books. 

21 Jan 2018     



alexanderelwood@hotmail.com
United Kingdom

Many thanks for all those helpful suggestions.
 
I īve followed all the links and ordered two books, and I īll draw up some kind of plan for them to follow when I īve assessed where they īre at in relation to the material.
 
Again, I īm very grateful 

21 Jan 2018     



Antonio Oliver
Spain

Hi,
 
Probably too late, sorry.
 
Years ago I enjoyed this wonderful series:
Complete English
by E.G. Thorpe
A collection of six anthologies of prose and poetry extracts from a number of authors, supported by comprehension and language work, for children aged six to twelve. 
 
Definitely worth a look! 
 
Regards 
 

21 Jan 2018     



martinasvabova
Czech Republic

What about Oxford Read and Discover ? There are various levels and topics. https://elt.oup.com/catalogue/items/global/graded_readers/oxford_read_and_discover/?cc=gb&selLanguage=en

22 Jan 2018     



olivergreen
Brazil

Eu também uso a série Ladybird Read it Yourself, é muito bom entender realmente. Existem outras séries também que são ideais.

24 Jan 2018