Aim of the activity
Viewing a video in the family languages in order to understand and to identify
with the languages. Also that the same video can be watched in different
languages showing that multilingualism is “real”. Work on the child’s narrative competence*.
Preparation for the activity
It is possible to use multilingual versions of video on DVD; however, it is recommended to use the YouTube website as this allows the child more freedom
to access the desired language and videos that are of particular interest
to the child personally.
The procedure for the activity is very straightforward. The parent’s role is restricted to mentioning the possibility of watching the child’s favourite movie
in a different language. The freedom of choice of language is very important
here. Parents should let the children make their own decision which language
they choose and how often they watch the video in the language. An incentive could be the suggestion to see whether the characters in the video can actually speak a different language. Again, parents should make sure that they give the children an opportunity to talk about their feelings and answer all of their questions related to the language.
Significant benefit of the activity
The activity introduces languages through technology which is a great motivator
for children. The freedom of choice gives the children an opportunity
to identify themselves as a part of a particular group based on a common
language. The introduction of the family language in contrast with other languages, and related to a particular experience, can affect the children’s view
of different languages. The child’s perception of an experience (i.e. a video)
may differ according to the language used. It’s not only the language that
may affect the children’s decision-making; it’s also the voices of the characters
and particular expressions. As a result, children can find watching a video
more interesting in one language, and another video in a different language.
(see Zaraysky 2009)
Source of the activity
Multilingual Families Project
This activity was inspired by: YouTube clips and videos for children that can
be found on YouTube WWW.YOUTUBE.COM
Zaraysky S., 2009, Language Is Music: Over 70 Fun & Easy Tips to Learn Foreign
Languages, Cupertino: Kaleidomundi.