Many children remember language more easily when they learn through creative activities such as drawing, colouring and crafts.
Our exams for young learners aim to make language learning an enjoyable experience. They include fun and enjoyable activities, such as drawing, colouring and conversation, which are ideal for motivating children to learn.
Creative English learning activities
Any fun, creative language learning your child does at home will help. Keep in mind our Young Learners philosophy:
- Develop English language skills in a natural, stress-free way
- Use language that is meaningful to a child
- Test skills in fun, interesting and varied ways.
- When your child does drawings, takes photos or cuts interesting pictures out of magazines, encourage them to label their pictures using English words and phrases.
- Encourage your child to make a poster about something that interests them, such as fashion, skateboarding or aliens. Then write some captions in English. If possible, display the poster afterwards – it’s a great way to remind your child of English words and phrases.
- Listen to a song. After 10–20 seconds, pause the music. Ask your child to draw whatever comes into their head. Play another 10–20 seconds, pause and draw again. Keep doing this until the song finishes. Your child should have several drawings. Ask your child to write a short story to go with their pictures.
- Read one of your child’s favourite English language storybooks. Then encourage them to draw their own story pictures and label them using English words and phrases.
- Our Speaking tests use lots of pictures and photos. They are an excellent way to help children start talking about something. Here’s a fun way to practise describing pictures:
In A1 Movers and A2 Flyers, children are told the name of a story and given time to look at some pictures. Then they’re asked to tell the story. This is something you can practise at home:
- One person can see a picture and must describe it.
- The other person must listen and draw what is being described.
- At the end, compare the drawing with the original picture.
- Choose three or four of your child’s favourite drawings or photos. Give them some thinking time. Ask them to look carefully at all the pictures. Can they tell a story using all the pictures?
- Young learners only need to say a few words about each picture. Then, when they feel confident, encourage them to use words such as ‘and’, ‘but’ and ‘because’ to join their ideas together.
- Talk to your child about their drawings. Try using a mixture of closed questions, which assess facts (e.g. Where is the little girl?) and open questions, which assess reasoning (e.g. Why do you think she is happy?).
- Choose some of your child’s favourite drawings, crafts or photos. Spread them out on the floor/table. Choose one and describe it. Your child must guess which one it is. Reverse roles.
- Use the words in our free picture books and vocabulary lists to play Pictionary. Ask your child to draw something from the vocabulary list, without writing any words or speaking. The other players must guess what they are trying to draw.
- Encourage your child to make their own flashcards with new vocabulary. On one piece of card, write a word. On another piece of card, add a picture for that word. Your child could illustrate their cards with their own drawings and keep them in a ‘favourite word box’.