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Getting Started: Teaching English to Children with Songs and Flashcards

New to Dream English? If you are just starting out with this site, and teaching children English using songs, please take a few minutes and read through this page. I hope it will give you enough information to get started, and give you the tools to make your lessons great! You can get everything you need from the Dream English website for free to begin teaching English to children. Teaching children English is a fun, challenging and rewarding experience. Good luck, and have fun!

The Basics:
To me, there are some basic concepts that I start off all my beginning students from 1- 10 years old: ABC’s, Colors, Numbers, Weather, Feelings, Animals, Basic Questions and greetings: What’s your name?, Hello and Goodbye Song, and How old are you? This is what I call my core curriculum. These topics contain vocabulary, phonic sounds, and concepts that I believe will create a great foundation for Children to start learning English. I also chose these topics as my core curriculum because they are all things that most children are familiar with. Almost all children have seen a dog, been happy, seen colors, and have been asked their names. The topics relate to them, so they are fun to learn in English.

Below is a list of the song pages from Dream English that I recommend for teaching the basic topics. You can get all you need to start your classes from Dream English for free; the songs, flashcards, coloring, worksheets, game and lesson ideas and more.
The Basics:
1. ABC’s: For this topic I recommend beginning with the ABC Song. You can download for free the following: ABC Song mp3, ABC flashcards, ABC coloring and writing worksheets, click here to go to the ABC Song page.
2. Colors: The Color song is a simple and fun way to introduce colors, you can download for free the Color Song mp3, flashcards, worksheets, and a game, click here.
3. Numbers: Start with Let’s Count 1-10, and then move onto counting with the new One Fish song. You can download numbers flashcards, a game and more here on the One Fish song page. Download the Let’s Count 1-10 song here. Here is a video of how I teach this song in my classes:

Check out Dream English Kids YouTube Channel with over 150 Videos for Children. Click here!

4. Weather: Children know they can’t go out and play when its raining! Teach them the basic English Weather vocabulary with these flashcards and the Weather song. click here to check it out.
5. Questions? What’s Your Name? How old are you? – Simply play these songs for your students and have them sing along with you and fill in their own names and age. Click here for “What’s your name?” and here for “How old are you?”
6. Animals: Children love animals, so I made this simple song, flashcards, and coloring sheets to introduce children to some English animal names and sounds. A dog says woof, woof, a cat says meow! Check out the song page here.
7. How are you? I’m happy! Children can easily identify these feelings and even if they can’t say them yet, they can touch the flashcard to tell you they are happy in English! Download the free How are you? song, and Flash cards here.
Ok, so now I have all of this material how do I make a lesson plan?
That’s a great question! This all depends on your situation, how many students do you have, how often do you see them, etc. Below is a sample lesson plan for 2-8 year olds:
30 Minute English Lesson for Beginner 2-8 year olds.
1. Warm up- get the students comfortable by doing simple actions with them. Say and do the following, don’t worry if your students don’t follow you right away: clap your hands, jump, spin around, sit down, stand up. Also, I usually start out the lesson saying Hello and waving my arms. You can also start your class with this easy and fun Hello Song.
2. Numbers- Practice counting objects from 1-10, or using flash cards. If the students are comfortable with numbers, play a simple touch game. Call out the number and ask the students to touch the flashcard.
3. Song- Let’s Count 1 to 10, a free Dream English download.
4. Alphabet-Using flash cards introduce the alphabet from A to Z. You may want to introduce phonics at this point, or just the alphabet letters. Next, have the students stand up and make the shapes of ABC with their body.
5. Song-ABC Song, another free Dream English download.
6. Colors- introduce the colors using flashcards, objects, or items around the room. Try to have the students repeat after you.
7. Song-Color Song, yes another Dream English free download
8. Coloring- this is optional, but you can use crayons to have the students repeat the names of the colors again. Then have them color something simple.Try our Dream English Animal coloring sheets.
9. Read a book- Any book for kids is great. I recommend asking the students questions when reading. “What do you see on the page? flowers, that’s right. What color are they? how many?”
10. Goodbye Song- I use the Dream English Goodbye song, though you can use anything you like. I just make sure to say thank you to the kids when we are finished, and ask them to repeat.
Ok, these are some suggestions and ideas. One other point is that it is important not to force the beginners to speak right away. Once they become comfortable they will begin speaking. The time this takes varies from student to student.
If you are new to teaching English with songs, please check out the Free Teaching Children English with songs Ebook here.
What if I want to plan a full month of lessons with one lesson per week?
What I do is I rotate the basic themes as the main part of my class, then I add another topic for the month. For example, each week you can teach numbers, basic questions (what's your name?), ABC’s, and colors. Then pick a main topic like animals. There is a lot you can do with animals. The basic way I introduce a monthly topic when I see the students once a week for an hour or less is this?
Week 1: Introduce the vocabulary and song, play a simple touch game, and maybe do some coloring. In the case of animals, introduce the animal names (dog, cats,etc.) and then put them on a table or floor. Ask the students to touch one of the cards name you call. For example, “Touch the dog” Next, sing the It’s a dog song, and finish up by coloring one of the Dream English animal coloring sheets.
Week 2: If you feel the students are ready, have them play a simple game where they have to say the name of the vocabulary. You may have to review it with them first. It can be a simple game where you place the cards on the floor, and ask them to say the name of one of the cards then run touch it.
Week 3: Introduce a question phrase: What’s this? It’s a dog. Have the students take turns asking each other these questions while holding the flashcards. Keep in mind this is probably a bit difficult for students under 4 years old.
Week 4: Review the previous weeks material, play a game like the tower game where the students have to answer the question; “What’s this?” It’s a dog” If they get it correct, they can try to stack the flashcards on a cup, and see how many they can stack up. This works best with paper cups and laminated flashcards.
Note: The whole time each week I am also reviewing the other basic topics of the month, like the ABC’s and numbers. It takes awhile to figure out what the best balance of time for each topic will work for your classroom. Again, these are just ideas to get you started. I recommend finding the best way for you and your situation. I encourage you to explore the Dream English site, as there are many more song topics, and chants to help you and your students learn English! I hope this helps get you started!



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Also, feel free to email me with any questions!
email: matt (at) dreamenglish.com
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