PREPARING YOUR CHILD FOR LIFE IN A FRENCH LANGUAGE SCHOOL
La Commission scolaire and its schools strongly encourage the participation and the cooperation of all education partners. This, in turn, contributes to the success of students and to their social and cultural growth. It is in this scope that we share with you the following ideas and suggestions. We offer them to all parents and in particular to the parents of younger children.
IF BOTH PARENTS ONLY SPEAK ENGLISH, PLEASE READ ON. Send a strong and positive message:
- Your own positive attitude and the interest that you show towards the French language and culture send a clear message to your child: Learning French is important.
If you decide to learn the French language by enrolling in one of the many courses that are offered throughout the province, you will be sending an even stronger and more positive message to your child. You can get more information regarding French courses being offered by contacting the French community school center in your area or la Société éducative de l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard.* French courses might also be offered by other institutions such as UPEI and Holland College.
- Get involved in the French school community center near you. Look for social and cultural activities that might be offered there.
Your child can start learning French before his or her 5th birthday: The more a child is exposed to a language the better.
- Hire a French speaking babysitter (if you need one).
- Enroll your child in French pre-kindergarten.
- Borrow French books and videos from the libraries located at the Carrefour de l’Isle-Saint-Jean in Charlottetown, Centre Belle-Alliance in Summerside or at the Centre d’éducation Évangéline in Abram-Village (THEY ARE FREE OF CHARGE).
- Listen to French songs with your child, whether at home or in the car.
Stimulate your child’s language skills in his or her first language (English): A child’s first language skills, when developed from infancy, can significantly contribute to learning another language.
Skills learned in a first language are transferable to a second one. Therefore:
- Speak to your child as much as you can.
- Develop your child’s phonological awareness skills by playing with nursery rhymes and songs, and by playing language games such as: I spy with my little eye something that starts with « m ». (Simply say the sound of the letter and not the letter itself.)
- Schedule a reading time for your child and read stories every day.
You have registered your child in Kindergarten. What should you do next?
- Meet with your child’s teacher before the start of the school year.
- Keep looking for opportunities to expose your child to the French language and to activities that might help enrich his or her French language skills.
- Find out whether or not your French school has a tutoring club after hours for students who might need extra help.
- Keep in touch with your child’s teacher, especially in the first few weeks of Kindergarten.