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How to play Minecraft with younger children and improve cognitive abilities

Is your child obsessed with Minecraft games?

Do you wonder whether Minecraft is good for kids?

Do you know which impact playing Minecraft has on your child’s learning?

Your kids can play Minecraft for free on selected Minecraft servers and look forward to their gaming time.

If children are allowed to spend time on smartphones, tablets, or television, you’d rather have them engage with online games that stimulate their brains, promoting mental capabilities.

The Minecraft game can improve cognitive learning capabilities and fine motor skills. Let’s see how.

What is Minecraft?

How To Play MinecraftMinecraft is, arguably, the most influential video game of all time. Players can create new interesting environments using blocks and then go on adventure trips in the world they create.

The environment is randomly reassembled every time you reload a new game; thus, no two games will be alike. This game doesn’t offer directions or instructions. It is a free form, do as you wish affair, where the player figures out the next steps. The player learns through the trial and error method about the dos and don’ts.

During adventures, the game introduces obstacles to players, and they have to devise solutions to overcome these hurdles, which teaches problem-solving skills.

Minecraft is available on all platforms such as iOS, Android, Mac, Xbox, PlayStation, and PC and for any help regarding how to get started with Minecraft, check these useful step by step Minecraft tutorials.

How to Play Minecraft?

We encourage parents to give the game a shot themselves to experience the types of decision making it triggers. Here’s how:

  • Start the Minecraft journey as a single player.
  • Create a new environment by clicking on the create a new world
  • The create new world button lets you name the new environment. Choose a name and build a new world.
  • You will have to select the game mode now to experience the open world uniquely. Types of game modes in Minecraft are:
    • Survival – Players have to survive in this mode by gathering material to build shelter and dodging obstacles.
    • Spectator – This mode is used to observe the environment created by other players; hence, you are invisible to everything.
    • Creative – Players have immediate access to all blocks. They can fly and are immune to death. The main purpose of this mode is to create a unique environment.
    • Adventure – Players will be able to interact with controls and obstacles to complete the adventure.
    • Hardcore – The difficulty level of this mode is very high. Players cannot re-join the game. Once the player dies, the environment is deleted or you can only observe, but cannot participate.

Younger children can start playing Minecraft in the creative or adventure modes, so they understand the basics of the game and develop the cognitive gaming skills to build on for the advanced levels. Minecraft is considered safe for children above 7 years of age.

See how you can play it on the SeekaHost Minecraft server here:

5 Top Benefits of Playing Minecraft As A Child

Here are the benefits of allowing children to play this game for an agreed and supervised period:

1. Improves Focus

Building a new environment in the game requires concentration because you will have to be attentive for a long time doing a single task.

While creating a new environment the child has to concentrate on building one level (at a time) and then move on to another. This activity strengthens the attention muscle, that will help them focus in class and while completing tasks like their homework.

2. Enhances Problem Solving Skills

Manoeuvring obstacles in the game can encourage critical thinking and quick reaction to efficiently solve real-world problems.

Dodging obstacles, making quick escape plans, finding cover, and learning to survive are the main features of this game. Children playing this game are bound to enhance these life skills in a playful and purposeful way.

3. Encourages Creativity and Project Planning

Project Planning

Minecraft provides endless scope for creativity. Young children might not be able to create the most sophisticated environment right away. However, their efforts can prove fruitful in enhancing and inculcating creative skills by continuing to improve it.

With the huge number of blocks and opportunities provided in the game, it gives children the scope to build anything they can imagine. There have been cases where children with Dyslexia have benefited from the video game.

4. Improves Math and Basic Programming Knowledge

While developing complex shapes, tackling geometric problems, and manipulating blocks, children improve their mathematical skills and fine motor skills. These are part of every child’s curriculum at school.

Along with math, children develop a basic understanding of the Python programming language. Minecraft is written in the Python language and children with a good grasp over commanding blocks learn it with ease.

5. Teaches Digital Literacy Skills

This game allows players to interact and collaborate online to create bigger and better environments. They will learn how to use online communication tools, browsers, and apply basic computing skills.

However, as parents, you need to know who is connecting with your children on a public internet server. You can set up your personal Minecraft gaming server to know and control who is connecting and playing in your child’s environment. This option can make you assured of your child’s security along with them enhancing their cognitive skills from a video game. You can learn more about security settings for Minecraft gaming here.

Minecraft combines learning and fun

Although Minecraft, like any other online or video game, can be addictive, the benefits of playing it outperform any disadvantages.

Children can build their math and programming skills and become problem solvers from a very young age while being creative at the same time.

Gaming isn’t a waste of time as some parents often believe it to be. Minecraft is a perfect example of how gaming can boost cognitive development. Of course, moderation and safety is the key to remember to enable a fun learning experience while playing.

 

Know Your Basics of School to Prepare for Defence Exams

Our roots and basics play an essential role in learning about the world we live in. Our initial development dates back to home and school life, where an individual learns necessary, globally sought-after skills. These educational qualifications assist a student in recruitment, tertiary education, and, most importantly, all kinds of exams.

Ultimately, secondary education creates a foundation to learn and develop better in preparation for the work and professional career we pursue. This article shares how one should know the basics of school to prepare for the so-called defence exams as an example.

What are Defence Exams?

In India, defence exams or Combined Defence Services Examination (or CDS) which are conducted for recruitment in the Indian Army, Indian Naval Academy, Officers Training Academy, and Indian Air Force Academy. These duties divide into combat, administrative assignments, medical services, engineering services, JAG’s Department, or the Education Corps. CDS or defence exams have two stages – written exam and SSB interview. This exam includes subjects like English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics. Whereas, SSB interviews include Officers like Quality (OLQs), general knowledge, and some technical questions.

While meeting the personnel of defence sectors, most of them would mention how it is vital to get familiar with the basics. This earlier insight into the preparation of exams allows a student to understand how they can approach the traditional methods to bring change into their routine to score better in defence exams. Get familiar with old textbooks and schedule and try out these basic methods for preparation!

Basics To Know From School To Prepare For Defence Exams

Gather details on general knowledge and current issues

general knowledge & Current IssuesIn schools, teachers introduce various activities to enhance student’s general knowledge and awareness regarding current issues. Being a student, this task appears as the most challenging for most of us. However, who knew, it would become beneficial for us to study for defence exams.

The significant portion of defence exams covers general knowledge and current issues. It is essential to be aware of what is happening in our surroundings, the country, and the entire world. This information reflects that a candidate remains updated about current affairs. For students who used to refer to newspapers and current issues in their school time, this task would seem easy, and they can remain up-to-date at all times.

Keep track of the formulas required for different questions

Whenever a question requires to use different formulas, it brings the memories of students deliberately learning all the mathematical and physics formulas back in school. To score better in defence exams, students should again learn those equations, derivations, and formulas.

To ace this skill, students should divide these formulas into different segments while preparing for defence exams, depending upon their use, situation, and other parameters. The correct usage of these formulas will help them deliver the answer better and, eventually, will help to score well in the Sarkari results. Moreover, if one is aiming for a technical role in the defence sector, they must know the basics of these calculations and formulas.

Get a grip on Math and English

It might seem like a preferred inclination, but most of the defence exams focus on the English and mathematics section. Undoubtedly, social issues, general knowledge, science, and other subjects are necessary, but these subjects seem to be more critical.

English-Maths for Defence ExamsIn school, many students used to dislike Math, and it somehow results in low scores in exams. Well, one cannot risk the same while preparing for government exams. To get a grip on mathematics, the students need to develop a proper mindset and practice hard to solve mathematical problems. Even if it seems hard at some point, one must not lose hope and keep trying. It would be easier to refer to a school textbook for math and practice some exercises.

Also, when it comes to English, things become a little smoother. There is no doubt that English is a popular subject of most of the students and more comfortable than any other subject. Nevertheless, please do not take it lightly! English is the most fundamental basis of any competitive or government exams. Besides, English features grammar and spelling like synonyms, verbs, and much more. Get a grip on this language, and one can easily excel in any private or government job.

Read more about English exam preparations here:

https://education.clickdo.co.uk/ielts-exam-preparation/

https://education.clickdo.co.uk/better-english-skills-for-pte-academic/

Prepare detailed notes

To keep track of the previous and latest developments, students need to prepare a detailed set of notes for every topic. Yes, exactly like we made our school notebooks for different subjects. One might think it is an old way, but there is no denying that these traditional methods work efficiently.

Students must update these notes day-by-day to examine the daily progress and help plan the remaining study accordingly. Also, if detailed notes are not helpful, then students can try writing the notes in a precise format and study it regularly. After trying these methods, do not forget to go through it profoundly for revision before the examination. All these preparations play a significant role in determining our results in defence exams.

Read more about student management apps to help you study here:

https://education.clickdo.co.uk/10-student-management-apps-to-sort-your-life/

and which mistakes to avoid:

https://education.clickdo.co.uk/7-study-problems-to-overcome/

Set School-Type Schedule

Schedule Sheet - Defence Exam PreparationWe all know that passing a defence exam is a hard task. If students are aiming for better scores and achievements, then they must plan out their entire schedule. During our school time, we used to stay almost 6-8 hours in school and study seriously. Well, students need to bring back this schedule and apply it in their daily routines.

To prepare for defence jobs and exams, it is necessary to practice discipline and a proper schedule. Students need to understand the severity of the situation and manage their routine to prepare for exams. Plan the entire day with necessary breaks, study hours, physical training, hobbies, and other essential things. If one effectively works to hone their personality, the schedule and routine will eventually get back on track.

Preparation is key

This article lined out what students need to consider and revisit from their previous learning experiences at school. These basics might help prepare students for government exams or help the school-leaving students prepare for upcoming competitive exams. Test these methods and give your best for exams to get access to your dream career!

PFIZER LAUNCHES NEW ONLINE SCIENCE TEACHING RESOURCES TO HELP WITH HOME LEARNING

As schools remain closed to the majority of pupils during the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown, Pfizer UK releases a series of online educational materials and free online games for STEM learning from home.

Pfizer’s resources aim to help parents teach children from ages 5 to 14 about infection, antibiotics and vaccines through e-learning modules, puzzles, games and at-home experiments. Resource packs can be accessed for free from Pfizer.co.uk

An independent survey of 1500 UK adults looking after school-aged children, conducted by the Sutton Trust, found that only two in five parents feel confident teaching their children at home[1]. Pfizer has taken action to help parents struggling with home learning and ensure children across the country continue to study the important subject of science while unable to attend school.

Julian-ThompsonJulian Thompson, Vice President, Global Regulatory Operations and Pfizer’s Sandwich Site Head says about this project

“I know a lot of parents might not feel confident teaching science at home, but it really is a fun subject and there are lots of things you can do with your kids to explore it. I hope these online materials stop people feeling daunted to tackle it at home.”

The curriculum-linked materials for 5-14-year-olds have been adapted for child-friendly online use and consist of two highly topical themes: ‘Superbugs: Join The Fight’, developed in partnership with The National Schools Partnership, and ‘Science in a Box’.

The ‘Superbugs: Join the Fight’ e-learning modules and virtual activities outline practical ways to prevent the spread of infection and introduce concepts such as the inappropriate use and misuse of antibiotics and the role of vaccines in preventing disease.

The ‘Science in a Box’ materials aims to demystify the making of medicine. It invites students to learn about medicine development using engaging online content. The resource packs can be accessed for free from the website.

Alyson Parry, Teacher at Trerobart Primary School said of the “Superbugs: Join the Fight’ classroom resources:

This is one of the…easiest resources I’ve ever used. It is to the point, it gets the message across and the children enjoy it too.”

Peter Collins, Senior Corporate Responsibility Manager, Pfizer UK:

“For years, tens of thousands of children across the UK have benefitted from Pfizer’s classroom-based science programmes. Since school closures, we’ve worked hard to re-purpose and develop materials specifically for home learning. We want to ensure young people can access these topical and engaging materials and continue to be inspired by STEM subjects at home.”

Nicola Soong, Global Commercial Operations, Pfizer, and parent of 2 children:

“I’ve found it increasingly difficult to structure my children’s ‘school days’ and to find informative and interactive resources that suit their learning style. Pfizer’s teaching materials have been a great helping hand, and the superbugs content has helped me explain the current situation to my children with ease.”

About Pfizer: Breakthroughs that change patients’ lives

Pfizer-LogoAt Pfizer, a 150-year-old successful biopharmaceutical company, we apply science and our global resources to bring therapies to people that extend and significantly improve their lives. We manufacture health care products, including innovative medicines and vaccines and enter into emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time. We collaborate with health care providers, governments and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable health care around the world.

[1] The Sutton Trust, School Closures – Parent Polling, April 2020 [https://www.suttontrust.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Parent-Polling.pdf]

Career Advice – Avoid these 3 Common Mistakes when Choosing a Career Path

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For some, choosing a future career is simple, and they might have a clear idea of what they want to do now and for the rest of their lives. But for many students across the country asking themselves “what career should I do?”, choosing a career path is a real challenge and one that comes with a lot of anxiety and insecurity.

Here are three common mistakes people make when choosing a career path.

Some may be anxious about meeting expectations, while others might assume that their passion may not translate into a full time living. This is why it’s important for students to understand their career choice so as to avoid crucial mistakes in the process.

Ignoring Industry Numbers

jobs that didn’t even exist 20 years agoSome people might assume that some careers are lucrative and that there will never be a decline. In other cases, people will simply pay little attention to the numbers, and enter a field strictly because they like it.

Industries go from boom to bust all the time, and entire segments can disappear overnight. For instance, fields like mortgage brokering are cyclical in nature, and demand always fluctuates. Other markets become saturated, like law for instance. So instead of basing your choices on assumptions, make sure that you look at the numbers and the prospects.

Have a look at some jobs that didn’t even exist 20 years ago to understand why it’s important to think carefully about your career path:

Going for Your Passion

This isn’t going to be popular with everybody, but the idea of simply following your passion is overrated. No matter how passionate you are about a subject, if you lack the basic skills for it, you’ll be unhappy, and might not even be able to get through your studies.

You should first look at your strengths and weaknesses, look at job profiles, and determine areas where you could thrive. If you need more information about different career paths, we strongly suggest you browse through these job profiles at University Compare. You’ll get a full rundown of the skill set required for every job, what kind of tasks will be required from you, and information about salaries.

You’ll also get a general idea of job prospects in the industry. This will give you a clearer view of what you can expect, and you’ll be able to see if it would be a good fit for you.

Choosing Money Over Everything

At the other end of the spectrum, you also don’t want to simply go for a job for the money. For instance, entering into the healthcare field might seem like a good choice career-wise, but if you don’t enjoy serving people, or even worse, are squeamish at the idea of dealing with illness and injuries, then you’ll be miserable.

You must find a compromise between what you’re good at, your general interests, and remuneration. Going for the money only is a sure-fire way to burn yourself out. Instead of opting for a career that will pay you well for a few years until you eventually quit, choose a career where you’ll be able to at least gain seniority, and feel great working in.

These are just some of the major mistakes people make when picking a career. If you manage to avoid them, you’ll be that much closer to finding the best career for you.

If you’re considering online work in education then check out our guide here.

Classroom Secrets Launching Free Home Learning Website To Offer Support During COVID-19 crisis

Already Over 185,000 Sign Ups for Free Home Learning

Halifax-based educational resource provider, Classroom Secrets, have launched Classroom Secrets Kids, enabling primary pupils to continue their education through home learning lessons and interactive games that match the English national curriculum.

Celebrating their seventh year in business this year, towards the end of 2019 the company launched a separate home-learning website for children, complementing what they were being taught by teachers using Classroom Secrets resources in their lessons. As the COVID-19 outbreak became a pandemic and schools were at risk of closure, the plan to develop the games and activities on Classroom Secrets Kids was moved forward ahead of the original schedule.

Classroom Secrets CEO Claire Riley and CTO Ed Riley
Classroom Secrets CEO Claire Riley and CTO Ed Riley

Access to the games and activities on Classroom Secrets Kids website is currently free and will remain so for as long as possible. This forms part of a wider package offered by the company at this challenging time, which includes free weekly home learning packs (as recommended by gov.uk) on the main Classroom Secrets website, a daily home learning timetable, a partnership with  BBC Bitesize daily lessons to create daily content, and a support group on Facebook called ‘Coronavirus Home Learning Support for Teachers and Parents’ that has over 11,000 members.

Since launching Classroom Secrets Kids, the new site has attracted over 185,000 new users due to the huge demand from parents looking to teach their children at home.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the response to our new Classroom Secrets Kids service, both in terms of how well it’s been received and how many people have signed up. We knew that there was going to be a huge demand for home learning, and so as soon as we heard about the potential school closures it was our top priority. Classroom Secrets Kids, provides something directly for parents and children to help learning at home. Being able to offer it for free at this early stage was vital to us, so we can ensure that children get the education they need without putting any unwanted financial pressure on parents.

As a Mum of a 22-month-old and four year old, I can truly empathise with parents.  It’s a very difficult time  as parents grapple with working from home and becoming teachers to their children at the same time. As well as all the free games and activities on Classroom Secrets Kids, our main website, Classroom Secrets, has over 5,500 resources. Many of these resources are free, with the complete range available for a small monthly fee.”

Claire Riley, CEO of Classroom Secrets

The service is being offered for free and has already fostered partnerships with both the Department for Education and the BBC, who are either recommending or utilising these resources.

How to Effectively Plan Your IELTS Preparation

The IELTS is short for the International English Language Testing System, and it’s the most globally-recognized English language proficiency test. Passing this IELTS exam is useful for pursuing higher education, for migrating and studying or working in English-speaking countries, or for developing your career even further.

If you’re planning on taking the IELTS, then you must plan the right preparation starting from finding an IELTS practice test, IELTS mock test or IELTS online test to booking the right IELTS test dates. After all, it will cost you time and energy to accomplish.

There are several things that you can do to invest in yourself, whether it’s through higher education or a career progression. Doing so prevents you from becoming stagnant.

One such self-investment is taking and passing the IELTS or other English language tests.

Here are several tips on how you can adequately prepare for your IELTS exam to successfully pass.

Check the Practice-Based Test Format

Practice-Based on the Test Format

There are two versions of the IELTS that you need to know. There’s the IELTS Academic, which is for higher education or when you want professional registration in a predominantly English-speaking environment.

There’s also the IELTS General Training, which is for people migrating to an English-speaking country. It’s also for those who are seeking work training, experience, or secondary education in these countries.

The Reading and Writing test formats for these two versions are different from one another. Therefore, if you’re reviewing, ensure that your IELTS exam review materials adequately cover the right test that you’ll take.

Surround Yourself With English

English Speaking People - IELTS Preparation

Sticking to your textbooks alone isn’t enough to help you pass your IELTS exam.

Two major sections of the IELTS test are about Listening and Speaking the language. Therefore, you need to ensure that you train yourself to listen to and use the English language and be able to recognize what is being said while you also use the right pronunciation.

To do that, you should try and surround yourself with all sorts of English language media.

It’s not enough to listen to American films to help acquaint yourself with the English language. You should also listen to different accents. From Australian to British, there are plenty of English-speaking countries out there that you need to be comfortable listening to as well.

Luckily, you can easily consume media from all different countries online. You can opt to watch YouTube videos and tutorials or watch English movies on Netflix. Listening to an audiobook could help too.

Listen to Podcasts

Another way to sharpen your English listening skills is by listening to a lot of podcasts.

The great thing about podcasts is that you can listen to them anywhere you are. Plus, most of the time, these podcasts are free. Therefore, you won’t have to pay for content to listen to for practice.

Again, listen to a variety of podcasts so you can get a grasp of different accents as well.

Play Word Games

Word game - IELTS PreparationYou can easily practice your knowledge of the English language with the help of your handy-dandy phone.

Downloading apps, online games or word games on your phone is a simple addition that will help prepare you for your IELTS. Plus, it’s stimulating and fun to do!

You can also play with people from all over the world, even native English speakers. You can play word games during your breaks or brief moments where you have nothing to do.

Practice Under Time Pressure

One of the biggest challenges during the exam day is the time limit. Therefore, if you’re doing a trial run of the exam, make sure that you include a two-hour-45-minute limit on yourself too.

That way, you condition yourself to the time pressure and start learning how you can pace yourself the best even before the day of the test. We also recommend using online tools on your smartphones like Evernote and other management apps to be better organised with your studies. Read our article about study problems every student encounters to avoid these.

Watch Movies With Subtitles

English Subtitles - IELTS Preparation

A fun activity that everyone likes doing is watching movies.

For IELTS test-takers, it’s not only fun, but it’s also another opportunity to sharpen your English skills. You can do that by simply turning on the subtitles of the movie that you’re watching.

You can turn it off and on again to check whether you’re initial guess was correct. It’s a great way to practice, especially if you don’t have a partner to practice with for the test.

Study Sample Questions

Getting sample questions online will undoubtedly be a big help in reviewing and preparing for your IELTS.

There are a lot of free sample tests online that you can try. If you want a full and more comprehensive experience, you can purchase IELTS practice tests and materials from reputable test centres in your area.

The IELTS mock tests can help you gauge how much you know, as well as prepare you for what might be included in the test.

Work on Your Vocabulary

Vocabulary - IELTS preparation tips

Being an avid reader is going to help you pass the IELTS because you have a more comprehensive range of vocabulary.

If you haven’t yet, this is the most crucial time to start being a reader. Read online articles, books, newspapers.

Read from a variety of subject matters. That way, you develop an expansive vocabulary of the English language. At SeekaHost University we explain how blogging can be a great way to learn and practice English in our learn English article.

Record Yourself Speaking

When you’re practising your English-speaking skills, you should record yourself so that you can pick up on your mistakes. Doing so can help you pick up on things that you might have missed while you were speaking like grammatical or pronunciation errors.

Becoming a confident speaker or communicator is something many employers will look for, so you better be prepared for your interviews.

Consider Taking a Prep Course

IELTS Prep CourseOne of the more formal ways you can adequately prepare for your IELTS test is by taking up an IELTS prep course.

In fact, you can take online IELTS preparation courses so that you can prepare for the exam day within the comforts of your home. You can also check out if your IELTS testing centre offers prep courses.

It’s a lot easier to prepare for your IELTS test if you are in an environment that encourages study and concentration. Thus, enrolling for an IELTS preparation course can help improve your performance once you take the test.

Of course, this isn’t mandatory, but a lot of IELTS test-takers found that the prep course helped them understand the expectations and structure of the exam better.

Conclusion

The IELTS test is a promising self-investment, so you should take it seriously if you plan on taking it.

Adequate preparation is going to help ease the anxiety you have before taking the test, and it will ensure that you have a higher chance of passing the test.

If you’re preparing for your IELTS test, then consider applying some of the tips listed above on how you can adequately prepare yourself. Any additional preparation is sure to help you. Good luck!

For information on other English language tests read our PTE Academic article.

If you’re looking for an English tutor to support you with English language learning, have a look at our e-tutoring and e-teaching page.

How to best support children’s second language acquisition during their early child development stages at home?

As chief editor of the UK Education Blog and an early childhood educator with nearly 20 years of teaching experience, I was kindly invited to discuss the topic of multilingualism in today’s families with my good childhood friend and professional translator Alexandra Bekavac, who raises her children speaking her mother’s native language, Spanish, and her native language, German. Together we tried to answer questions many parents ask us with regards to the do’s and don’ts of teaching methods for bilingual or multilingual upbringing.

Here’s what we came up with, including links to some further reading and research in this field.

FAQ 1: Can the child catch up with the language of the country of residence in school while speaking a different language at home? What is your observation from a professional point of view?

Absolutely, if the parents give the child enough time to immerse in the language. You can see that research clearly indicates that a language can only be learned if we immerse in it and are exposed to it regularly as a child. See this timeline of language acquisition and discrimination in the first year of life for reference.

How-children-learn-a-language-in-the-first-year-of-life

You can see here that at around 11 months of age the child’s foreign language perception begins to decline if it only is exposed to one language and that the native language perception increases. So, the universal speech perception makes way for more language specific speech perception so that the child acquires that main language best. However, if at home it is exposed to two or three languages simultaneously, this speech perception model changes as you can see in this research:

Language-learning-while-exposed-to-second-language-during-first-year-of-life

The speech discrimination of American children exposed to Mandarin (red stripes left side) clearly shows the impact on their language learning compared to the control group in blue stripes: The graph in the middle shows the speech discrimination stagnated without language input from a person but only from songs or videos. The left graph shows speech discrimination by monolingual learners. As you can see, English native children could discriminate Mandarin almost at the same level as Mandarin native children when exposed to the language through human contact.

In my professional opinion, I can confirm such findings and I always encourage parents to speak their native languages with their children from birth. They always catch up with the language spoken at school and might be slightly delayed academically initially when starting nursery or school, but as soon as they become more confident in the second language, their overall learning at school is not hindered, but in my experience, even improved. They often demonstrate more resilience and tolerance towards others and learning another language is much easier for them.

If parents are concerned, then they have the option to read to their child in the language of the country of residence to offer that extra support at home for the school learning.

FAQ 2: What advantages and disadvantages can emerge from learning different languages as a young child?

Language acquisition and learning happens very naturally as a child and according to research the best time to immerse a child in different languages is between birth up to the age of 10 years. During that period the child will acquire the language through hearing and speaking it every day. It won’t have to study the grammar, vocabulary and language rules to learn it and this is the major benefit.

Apart from that, research has also found that children growing up speaking different languages find it easier toLanguage-acquisition-in-early-development-stages switch between language systems and this enables them to learn more languages much more easily later. Some research even indicates that multiple language learners develop improved music skills through identifying speech patterns and rhythms better. You can find such evidence in my dissertation “How young children learn and use a language” where I show through my own research project that social interaction plays a vital role in language acquisition, be it the first, second or third language the children are learning.

I haven’t observed many disadvantages, apart from the child not being able to communicate in the new language it is learning right away. Depending on the child’s personality this can lead to some initial insecurities or isolation, but with the support of the teaching staff and parents, the child overcomes this as soon as they feel more confident to use the second language spoken at school.

Here are some more possible disadvantages that people have observed, but as I said, they are very minor and shouldn’t stop any parent from continuing to speak their native language with their children.

FAQ 3: Why is it so important for the child to learn and accept its parent’s native language?

I personally feel that a language is such a big part of the culture of a country and it transports so much more than just communication. Wherever I have worked, we would invite parents to school, reading stories in their native languages and the children would feel a sense of identity. They would learn that many people are different and that it makes them special to speak different languages.

When parents doubt whether to speak their native language with their child, I always explain to them that it would be such a loss. What if their child can’t communicate with grandparents or other family members? What if their child can’t converse with others when visiting the home country of the parents? Wouldn’t they feel isolated and not part of the family?

Speaking a language together has so much more meaning and it connects the family, even if some members are far apart from each other. It gives the child a sense of belonging and even if the child decides not to speak it, it will still have the ability to use it and learn additional languages or skills.

FAQ 4:  Why do you think some children refuse to answer in their parent’s language?

What I have observed is that especially if the parents speak the language of the country of residence at home with each other, maybe because they both also are different native language speakers, then the child automatically feels that this is the “main” language as it also speaks it at school mainly. Accordingly, the language exposure in the parent’s native language is reduced and the child will not feel as confident using or speaking it.

Most parents see their child speaking their native language when they visit their home country where everyone will speak that language and it will be the main language spoken in the child’s environment. Another aspect worth mentioning is that the appreciation of the parent for their native language matters in my opinion. If the child observes that their parents don’t often use it and don’t enjoy speaking it, it also impacts the child’s love and respect of the language.

That’s why Alexandra is the best example! She is consistent with speaking Spanish with her sons she absolutely loves her Hispanic heritage and celebrates it at any given opportunity. She also tries to visit her family in Mexico every year for a longer period and this gives her sons the perfect opportunity to immerse in the Spanish language and culture.

We hope you enjoyed our interview and that we could provide some useful ideas and suggestions. You can watch it in full here:

How to Become an International Teacher teaching abroad?

Do you enjoy teaching, working with children and travelling the world?

If so, then working as an international teacher might be the right career path for you finding jobs abroad.

Living in interesting and exotic countries with the opportunity for cultural immersion is appealing for many.

However, international teaching is a serious career path that comes with important responsibilities. With the opportunity to live an enriching lifestyle abroad, international teachers must meet specific educational and professional standards before landing dream teaching jobs abroad. International teachers work in international schools around the world and you can check the countries with the best education systems here first, before you decide where you’d like to head professionally for your best career prospects:

Which Countries Offer the Best Education in the World?

What is an International School?

International schools

An international school is an educational institution that promotes education to students residing outside their country of residence. There are over 4000 international schools with proliferation expected with increased globalization. International schools provide education to children typically from pre-school to 12th grade with the adoption of curricula such as the International Primary Curriculum, International Baccalaureate or of a national curriculum different from that of the school’s country of residence. Most international schools deliver curricula in English and look for international teachers teaching English abroad. although there are some that provide education in French, German and Chinese, and Korean.

International schools are committed to instilling the values consistent with global citizenship while promoting a combination of independent thinking and commitment to interdependence.

These schools educate students who are typically not nationals of the host country. A minority of national children are accepted based on the specific admissions criteria of each school. However, most students are children of parents working in foreign embassies, missionary programs, international business and of the school itself.

Requirements for Working at an International School

Reputable international schools hire professional educators who have completed a university degree in education, hold a current teaching license or QTS (qualified teacher status), and have a minimum of two years of teaching experience.

Most international schools recruit native English speakers from the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

In addition to meeting educational and professional standards, international schools seek to hire teachers who have experience living abroad. While previous international studying or living is not a prerequisite, schools prefer candidates who demonstrate autonomy, a sincere interest in working in an international community, and coping skills for dealing with stressful factors that come with living and teaching abroad.

How to find an International Teaching Job

Internstional School Teacher

Aspiring international teachers are able to apply to individual international schools. However, it is more effective to contract with an international school recruiting organization.

These organizations provide a valuable service of linking candidates with international schools. Recruiting organizations vet each candidate to ensure that they have met the educational and professional requirements for international teaching. They also ensure that schools are reputable organizations and uphold teaching contracts.

Once approved by one of these organizations, candidates may apply for international teaching positions through the organization’s portal. These organizations also hold recruiting fairs throughout the year. This is a great opportunity to schedule in-person interviews for desired positions.

Most teachers can offer additional tutoring to prepare students for exams. There are various tutoring agencies or websites such as Eleven Plus Tutors where you can find tutoring jobs online or in person, but your employing school may also offer additional tutoring opportunities where you can earn extra.

The two top international recruiting organizations

  1. Search Associates
  2. International School Services

Why give Teaching Abroad a go?

International teaching is one of the best-kept secrets in education. It provides the opportunity to contribute to the lives of children while obtaining invaluable professional and cultural experiences. In addition, international teaching affords the chance for a fulfilling lifestyle; one marked with travel experiences, cultural immersion and self-growth.

Many people are interested in travel bloggers so why not share your experience as an international teacher via a blog? Get more inspiration here to start your online journey and possibly earn additional money on the side:

20 Ways on How to Make Money Blogging for Beginners (2021)

How One Website Can Turn Around Millions to Billions

How To Start A Blog In 2021 And Make Money Blogging (5 Step Guide)

Or read this article from a former teacher who left teaching to become a full-time digital worker:

Possible Jobs After Teaching: Why I Chose Copywriting

 

Things to Consider If You Want To Become A Doctor

When you are reaching your final few years at school, a common question is typically asked – what are you going to do with your life? This is a tricky decision to make when you are so young, but it is something that most people in similar positions face.

One of the common career routes for those who have an interest in science and medicine and helping others is becoming a doctor. Of course, training to be a doctor is never easy and there are many things you’ll need to do before qualifying. In this article, we are going to look at some of the things that you should consider if you are thinking about becoming a doctor.

Things to Consider before Becoming a Doctor

Where You’ll Study

The great thing about becoming a doctor in the UK is that there are so many great courses that you can take at university to get your degree. The location of the university is something that you’ll have to consider carefully as some are harder to get into than others. Will you stay near home or will you move away to study medicine? Have a look at some of the options available and consider where you’ll study carefully.

The Risks

Another thing that you will need to consider if you are thinking about becoming a doctor is the risk involved. Many people choose to study medicine because they want to help others get healthy again but there are many risks that come along with this. Each patient that you treat is your responsibility and if you make a mistake, you could find yourself in a lot of trouble.  As a doctor, you need to be willing to stick to informed consent and have the right kind of medical indemnity policy in place to protect yourself. If this is something that you are seriously considering, make sure to check out this guide to informed consent.

Duration

It might also be beneficial to spend some time considering how long this kind of medical training takes. You cannot become a doctor overnight, in fact, it will take up to 6 years. When you decide to become a doctor and study medicine at university, you need to be willing to commit. At the end of your studies, the time spent training will be worth it, but you need to make sure that this is right for you and that you’re suitable for the job.

Specialisation

Doctor Specialisation - Things To ConsiderThe final thing that we think you should consider if you are thinking about training to become a doctor involves specialising. There are many different kinds of doctors and many different roles within the medical industry. If you have a specialism in mind, then you need to understand that this will typically require additional training. This usually takes place after you have completed your initial training and your residency. While it can be useful to decide on your specialism now, you might change your mind along the way.

Why Becoming A Doctor Is A Good Choice

While there are many things that need to be considered before you apply for university, you should know that becoming a doctor can be a very rewarding job. Making a decision about your future is very tricky at a young age but some people dream of becoming doctors and this dream can come true if you put the work in.

Make sure to consider everything that we have discussed in this article and use this information to make the right decision. Hopefully, you’ll become a doctor in a matter of years as medical experts will always be in high demand!

3 Top Reasons for Teaching at an Independent School

Did you know that there are more than 2,500 independent schools in the UK including almost 300 world-leading HMC schools?

You may be looking to kickstart a teaching career in an independent school or be considering your next career move.

But what are independent schools? What makes HMC schools unique? And what is it like to be a teacher at an independent school?

Join us as we take a sneak peek behind the scenes to explain the life of a school teacher at an independent school.

What are Independent Schools?

Independent schools in uk

At independent schools, fees are charged which go towards running the school and the facilities provided. The curriculum you’ll teach might vary from school to school, as students aren’t required to follow the national curriculum. Because independent schools have autonomy over their curriculum, they are typically able to offer a much wider variety of subjects.

All independent schools are registered with the government and are inspected regularly by an independent schools inspectorate called ISI.

What are HMC Schools?

HMC (the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference), is an association of heads of world-leading independent schools. There are currently 296 HMC independent schools in the British Isles, including girl, boy and co-ed institutions.

Becoming a School Teacher at an Independent School

Teaching is an incredibly rewarding career with the opportunity to inspire and enrich the lives of young people. HMC independent schools are thriving, leading independent schools which pride themselves not only on providing a wonderful experience for their pupils but an environment where teachers can flourish in their chosen career.

If you’re thinking about teaching in an independent school, here are some of the reasons to work at an independent or HMC school:
  1. Personalised Learning that Shapes Pupils’ Lives

    Independent school teacherIndependent schools pride themselves on enabling a personalised approach to learning. As a teacher, you will have the time to get to know your pupils’ individual strengths and learning styles due to class sizes being smaller and more assistants being at your disposal to offer differentiated learning support.

    Becoming a teacher here, you play a pivotal role in each pupil’s school day experiences, which could have a long-lasting impact on each child’s development. Many independent school teachers find it exciting to work in a school environment that has so much to offer:

    • Great access to technology in the classroom ranging from state-of-the-art interactive touchscreen boards to iPads, children’s digital cameras, bee bots etc.
    • More specialist teachers that cover various subjects such as science, music, foreign languages, sports, so that you can focus on the core subjects like English and Mathematics.
    • Fantastic school clubs that any school staff member can run to earn another side income while offering the pupils additional learning after school.
    • Parent-teacher relationships are highly valued and independent schools often hold wonderful and glamorous events where parents get involved like mother’s and father’s day concerts, sports events, music and charity events and many more.

    Teaching is certainly a special job that can make a real difference to a child’s life.

  2. Teach Your Specialist Subject

    At HMC and other independent schools, you can focus on your strengths and teach the subject areas in which you excel.

    You can design lesson plans which truly celebrate your expertise. Pupils are also keen to learn, which reflects in their exam scores with nearly two-thirds of GCSE entries from HMC schools receiving an A/7 or higher – more than three times the national average.

    School environments at HMC independent schools are very supportive. They also provide excellent teaching resources across subjects – and many independent schools share their facilities with state schools and the local community.

  3. Professional Learning and Development

    Independent school teacherIndependent schools can be a great place to launch or continue to grow your career and HMC schools are committed to the professional development of their staff.

    At independent schools, trainee teachers, newly qualified teachers and those early in their careers benefit from considerable structured professional development support, including external courses and in-school training which can develop your knowledge across a wide range of topics including safeguarding, exam assessment, mental health and getting the best from your pupils.

    Professional development support continues as careers progress. There are regular performance development reviews, courses and training can be chosen to enable you to boost your knowledge and help you to keep abreast of new initiatives and innovations.

    For those aspiring to – or working in – middle, senior leadership or headship roles in the teaching profession, HMC has its own HMC Professional Development (HMCPD) service.

    Professional development programmes run through HMCPD provide highly-contextualised learning designed specifically for those working in independent HMC schools. The professional development courses prepare you for each stage of leadership from middle leadership to headship.

Now is the time to look for available teaching jobs at independent schools

Browse these teaching job platforms to find your next teaching dream role, but make sure the role is exactly what you’re looking for:

  • your next independent school job at HMC can be found online – find your next career opportunity and discover life at an independent school.
  • TES JOBS offers a wide range of state and independent school jobs all year around for various roles, such as teaching, catering, maintenance, IT etc.
  • ETEACH is an education recruitment job site, created by teachers for teachers.
  • LinkedIn is another great place to connect with schools and recruiters while they can see your profile and CV immediately.

Good luck!

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