Experience the Eureka moment! I am pretty sure that none of us had parents who, when we were toddlers, gave us lists of words to learn by next week. I don't think so. What generally happened is that we would point at something that we wanted to know the name of, such as a dog, and our parents said “Dog” and we repeated “Dog”. This form of learning is called Discovery Learning. It is the natural way we learned new words when we were small and is the way our brains are hot wired to build vocabulary. Using Discovery Learning creates powerful Eureka [...]
If a teacher cannot speak French or Spanish, how are they able to teach them as subjects? With the numbers of language teachers falling precipitously it's becoming more and more normal for a class to be taught by teachers who cannot themselves speak the language they teach. How can that work? Games like chess can harness human intellect I know many of the world's greatest chess players (in a previous life I ran the world chess championships) and it's interesting that the great Chess Grandmasters have chess coaches. It's interesting in that the chess [...]
There are two ways of learning a language. Firstly, there is by rote - essentially you'll learn a stock of useful sentences off by heart. And then there is the generative approach: in this method you learn words as building blocks to make more sentences. If you learn the first way, you'll always be limited to a few stock phrases. If you learn with the second method, with just a few hundred words, you can make millions of sentences. KLOO helps you with the second way...you'll hundreds of words and be able to make sentences in [...]
Many language systems are actually very poor. The result? You find it difficult, you become demotivated and start to believe that you don't have the skills to learn (which is simply untrue). The good news is, there are great resources available, if you know where to look.
"After playing two or three times with the same deck students have almost magically learned all the vocabulary, not only to write and read each word correctly but also to pronounce it right."Veronica Fernandez, Spain
Q. What resources are actually proven to work in schools? There is so much noise and choice around MFL resources, it is quite difficult to find resources that actually work (as opposed to those that are just heavily marketed). Many years ago I remember buying countless language resources to support my own kids' language learning, and actually being bitterly disappointed with them. My kids were never enthusiastic of the language programs and systems I purchased, and when I looked at them more closely (with my games designer hat on), I could see that they were poorly designed to [...]
(and not be fluent) Homeschooling is a big undertaking. Parents aim to educate their children at home and aspire to provide an education at least as good, if not better, than the local school system. Apart from the monumental responsibility of being a parent and the primary educator...parents need to become proficient at a raft of subjects usually taught by specialist teachers. In most subjects a parent needs to master a subject in order to teach it...science subjects, geography, mathematics all require the comprehension of complex systems. Even in English the parent will need to have a grasp of [...]
As exam results roll in, games are shown to boost performance In the UK, it's the season for academic results...students opening letters followed by squeals of delight or moans of despair. There is a lot of post exam analysis...where could I have improved this? What could I have done differently? At the same time an article in the Sunday Times caught my eye: "Maths GCSE for girls 8 and 9!" Improve academic performance through games GCSEs are UK exams taken by 16 year olds...to pass a GCSE at aged 8 or 9 is remarkable. So you wonder [...]
For a long time board games were in terminal decline. "The Video Game killed the Board Game Star" as it were....except it didn't. Board games have more than bounced back. In 2009 board game sales started to rise again - and have been doing so every year since.
WHAT CAN THE HUMBLE BOARD GAME DO FOR ME? Those old board games are sooo last century right? Adults learn French by playing KLOO's Race to Paris Board Game Well no, they're really not. Board games bring lots of benefits that on-line games and screen games just can't. And some of those benefits are really quite surprising. At KLOO, we make language games to help people learn a second language as they play. The game is increasingly being adopted by schools and the feedback from young students is fascinating. Teachers are often taken aback [...]