Paul's Blog

All In The Family

Mother’s Day! This past Sunday, here in the United States, we celebrated the givers of life. The ones who wipe our tears and often times provide those sweet memories of cuddles and warmth and security in our childhoods.

It is celebrated on various days throughout the world.

What we generally celebrate as Mother’s Day was first celebrated in 1908 when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother at St. Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia.

Mother’s Day also has complementary days for other family members, such as Father’s Day, Siblings Day and Grandparents day.

So, let’s talk a little bit about how to best learn and remember all about families in English.

A great way to start is to sit down and create your own family tree. Fill in everyone’s names where they should go, and then fill in their totals in English. Associating people in your life with their English family titles will help you remember what they are.

Where this might get a little bit tricky is when you start to get into dialects and the various names for one individual family member

For example: Grandmother. Grandmothers can be called Nana, Grammy, Grandma and any number of various other names.

After you’ve gone through traditional names and learned them in association with your own family.

You might be wondering how to talk about your extended family, or non=traditional family members.

These would be people with titles such as father-in-laws or step-mothers. Go back through your family tree and add the names of your non-traditional and/or extended family members and see if you have any pitfalls in titles.

Aunts, Uncles, cousins, step-siblings and great-grandfathers are just a few examples.

Another great way to continue to discuss your family, while in-voting your English is to talk about the details surrounding your family.

For example, you can talk about how your sister is older than you or your brother is taller that you, you can discuss the professions of your parents, or where they live.

All of these things will help you put vocabulary words you’ve already learned into context, and discussing them with regards to your own family members will help you internalize and ultimately learn these phrases and words for life!

Need to change up your flash card routine? Try playing “Go Fish” with your family tree!

Write down all your family members and titles on the cards and get to matching! If you need a refresher, the rules to Go Fish are easily found online.

Learning about how to discuss family in English is extremely important for English Language Learners. It is something that helps you pick up conversations with new people you might meet, gives you something to talk about with your own family and are generally just things that you need to be able to know. It is especially important for young children to be able to accurately name and title their loved one in the event of an emergency.

(All image via Google images)


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