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This is a place for parents and other educators interested in the use of the PASS (Parents As Successful teacherS) project materials with children aged 3-7.

PASS Experience Animal cards

Category: Phase 0
I was glad when my daughter wanted to play a game using her English learning animal cards. This package contains 20 animal cards with images, the word written both in Romanian and English (also with the pronunciation). She knows the letters and with a little effort she can read simple words in our mother tongue. She invented a game. This time I had to guess the animal card that she described. I had only three choices. At the begging she would say the first letter of the word, and then some features. After I gave the right/wrong  answer she tried also to read the word in English. It was fun. Impossible for me right now to explain why can't she read the word in English the way it is written... When I pronunced the word it sounded different from the way she read it. Also she was happy to remember the name of some animals like: spider, mouse, cat, rabbit,  and dog.
 If you don't practice you can also forget what you knew. She did not remember words like pig, bear and cow.
This is a moment of our game: she had the card with an ant. I recognize that I did not have a chance to look at this cards. For me they were new. :-) She told the letter P.  All my answers were wrong :-) But she made a mistake. She did not look at the word, at the first letter, she looked at the image. All the images are drawn and the ant looks like a spider ... The Romanian word for spider is paianjen. So, the first rule of the game was to look first at the word, not the image.
I did not have a purpose, because it was her initiative and I was taken by surprise. But it was a good exercise most of all because she tried to read and pronounce the words.
Now she is playing the game with her dad, too. :-)
 

PASS Experience What about Franklin?

Category: Phase 0
Franklin is the green turtle, main protagonist of the "Franklin" cartoon. When my girl was little she used to watch this cartoon. We have a book with this character. It is in English. I read it a while ago, but she was not interested to cooperate, to understand the text. We gave it a try again. What we did? We paid attention to the title first "Hurry up, Franklin" and the cover image. I asked her what does she think the title wants to say. She said that Franklin is running, so the title says "run Franklin". We had this conversation in our mother tongue. I gave the right answer and we did the same with the story. I read a page and then stopped. We had the conversation about the meaning of the text, watching the images. While I was reading she was able to translate some words. Then I followed the same strategy with almost all the text from the book. She was really excited when she heard about Rabbit. She knew the meaning of "rabbit". She learned a song about rabbits at kindergarten (at the English course).
A part of the text she was excited about is:
<It wasn't far to Bear's house. Just along the path, over the bridge and across the berry patch. Franklin meant no hurry -  except he saw something unusual. He wandered off the path and found Rabbit bobbing up and down in the tall, green grass. "What are you doing?" Franklin asked Rabbit.
"Playing Leap Frog," said Rabbit. "Do you want to play with me?" [...] >
The book is a little bit difficult for her English level. But I am sure that once she goes to school we will do it better. She will read it all alone. :-)
I wanted her to hear me read in English, to let her understand the text while analyzing the images and I was glad when she could also translate a few words and expressions.


 

PASS Experience Let's compare books!

Category: Phase 0
Lady and the Tramp. Two books written in different languages (English and Romanian). It was interresting in the end. I am saying "in the end" because my daughter was hard to convince to use Lady and the Tramp in our comparison activity. She wanted other stories, but unfortunately this is the only book that she have in two languages. I have to fix this in days to come.
First of all I asked her to compare the two books by the criteria of size, color, format, consistence. Then we talked about images. What are the differences between the way the characters are drawn and the similarities. We looked at the writting (she knows the letters and she can read only some short words in Romanian) and page numbers and in the end we read the stories in both languages.
This are a few of the observations that she made. The English book is smaller, thicher (even if it has a smaller number of pages), it is narrow, yellow, it is not new, and the scene images are different. One of the scene from the book written in Romanian is missing.
The Romanian version is blue, is bigger, thiner, new and and it has more writting and more images and scenes. About the images she observed some diferences, little ones, on the cover.  Both of the books are soft and she said that it has the  "Disney" logo on the cover. While reading the story in Romanian, she watched carefully the images and we talked about the way they are drawn/represented.  I read also the English version and i asked her several times to try to "guess" what I read analyzing images.
 
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