Updated: May 2, 2019
Today I'm going to show you what Montenglish is working on! It's something that makes me very excited and I'm very happy that I'm finally starting to share this project with the world 😊
A couple of years ago, when I started working at my school, I developed a vocabulary learning system for kids aged 6-9 studying in a Montessori environment. If you work at a Montessori school you probably know that there is no proper system for learning foreign languages the Montessori way. When I say proper, I mean that foreign languages are not as well developed as, for example, Maths is in a Montessori setting.
Many Montessori schools employing English teachers tell them that they are a Montessori school but they just don't do EFL this way. Kids at those schools usually have typical English lessons like in every other school.
When I was employed at my school I didn't want to do it this way. I'm lucky, because I work at a school which encourages projects and creative teaching. I was told to develop a system that will work ... and it worked 😊
The vocabulary learning system is based on three elements. One of them you already know: it's the spell checks that I've shared with you on this blog. With younger kids, however, spell check looks a bit different. Instead of the L1 words, they've got pictures. Those pictures are the most important part of the system. They are divided into sets of flashcards. The flashcards are designed in a true Montessori way as the three part cards: a picture card, a word card, and the control card with both the picture and the word. Students work with the flashcards studying the words, then they move on to learning how to spell them, and finally they create a page of a picture dictionary in their notebooks. This is a very simplified description of the whole process.
The system which I developed a couple of years back is based on downloaded pictures. Recently, I've started thinking "what if I create my own pictures 🤔". My best mate Barney Potts is crazy talented when it comes to drawing. You've seen a sample of what he can do in the blog post about the "there is/there are" cards (here).
So .... if I have all those ideas and Barney has the talent why not join forces?!?!?
And this is how, slowly, one step after the other, we are creating out own vocabulary teaching material. Today I'm going to show you set 1 of the vocabulary system and I'd love to hear your opinion about it (especially if you work in a Montessori environment). Would you like to invest in a system like this? 😀
Seeing as it's December the set is related to Christmas. It's composed of 17 pictures. Each picture is accompanied with a QR code which has the pronunciation of the word on it (British accent; real English person, not me pretending to have a British accent 😜). Other parts of the set are: spell check; QR code matching activity; picture dictionary cards. The smaller pictures from matching activity or stickers can also be used to create a Memory game. The pictures can also be given to students to help them revise vocabulary at home, not just spelling but pronunciation as well!! The possibilities are endless!!