Playing to Learn

The few times that I have shadowed our sons in their (mostly German-speaking) school, I’ve gained an appreciation of how difficult it must be to be immersed in a new language in that context.  Yes, young brains can pick up language fast, but going from zero to playground proficient is still a hard thing.

Lately, at home, we have noticed that they are most likely to practice their German when they are playing.  Either alone or together, they play with both toys and language.  They get in a lot of hours of practice that way and the German becomes part of their joy.

So: that new thing we want (or need) to learn… how can our learning feel like play?