Many parents have concerns about their children reading at the first class. They open the Student’s Book, see the words written there and are shocked: “My child cannot read this!”
That is true, your students cannot read in Russian yet, but it is not necessary. All the future exercises are geared toward them beginning to learn the Russian letters and the reading rules of the Russian language. Therefore, it is important to use common sense and what we have just learned during the lesson.
Dictations are an excellent practice for our students. Dictations require a lot of skills: You need to hear, recognize, write — look how many skills are worked on simultaneously!
I usually carry out dictations at the end of the class, before the final game. By this time my students have already reviewed the words necessary for the dictation.
There are different types of dictations. There are simple dictations. A teacher dictates and a student writes. You can dictate words and sentences. When you start the Soroka Course, you dictate words only.
What are the audio files for the Student’s Book for? How do you work with them? I am going to reveal secrets of experienced teachers.
I would like to start with the fact that we begin to learn a language through our ears. As I was taught: “Language is initiated through our hearing.” This is a natural process.
When a child lives in a linguistic environment, he constantly hears the language, which is spoken by people around him. Then a child starts to recognize words and to repeat them. His speech starts to form in his native language (the language of his environment).
Last time, I talked about how the Teacher’s Books are an important component of my “Soroka: Russian for Kids” course. Today I will talk more about this topic.
In addition to helping students learn Russian not just by reading but also by listening, there are also three tests at each level of the course. If you don’t need these tests, you can use them as additional worksheets.
However, you need these tests. First of all, they are a good way to review everything. Secondly, the tests I offer are easy to grade, since these tests have the сlear criteria for grading. There are only 20 points.
I once mused online about how the teacher’s books for my “Soroka” course could help us teach Russian to students. And I was impressed with a comment someone made to my musings.
One mom wrote: “I am a parent. I am not a teacher.”
In the Teacher’s Books, I write in detail about what and how to teach, and the order we follow.
If you go to my website and click on “Look Inside” of the “Teacher’s Book” for “Soroka 1” and start reading, everything is clear with warmups and endings of the lesson, but then you start having questions. For example, you read the following:
One of the ways in which my Soroka course helps you to teach Russian as a foreign language to children is through its use of the Oral Approach. The order of work that is followed is: listening, speaking, reading, and writing.
In your letters you often write that it is very difficult for you students to repeat the same thing several times.
I understand them since I myself do not like doing it; therefore, we need to come up with something to make it exciting for them.
For example, I like to use toy people and animals as helpers and talk to them as if they are real and we’re having a conversation:
I’m sure you’ll agree that a picture is worth a thousand words.
In the “Soroka” course, directions are extremely useful.
Let’s use the recipe for your favorite soup as an example. If you don’t follow the directions, it will turn out different. It might be not very tasty — or, on the other hand, it could be absolutely delicious.
Another example would be traffic laws. If you don’t follow them, you’ll very likely have a hard time driving from point A to point B.
Or instructions for operating, say, the latest smartphone that comes with previously unimaginable features.
A couple of years ago, I created a YouTube channel to provide extra guidance in teaching the Soroka lessons. My goal with this channel is to help teachers and parents have a better understanding of the Soroka books, so that teaching your kids can become part of your routine. On my channel I address the different techniques that can be used, and why they are important in the learning process. My videos cover techniques such as drilling and the oral approach; as well as my response to letters and questions that I have received. All videos are in Russian and English subtitles are available. Turn them on if they are not turned on automatically.