What age(s) are they?
I wonder if anyone has experience in teaching English to Spanish native children? I'm not sure when is the best time to start teaching them English alphabet and spelling, and basically when should I introduce writing?
Thank you for your help!
What age(s) are they?
I haven't taught in Spain, but I believe that writing is taught later than in the UK, so I would leave writing until they are learning it at school.
I taught an eight-year-old boy in Spain but he could of course already read and write and I was really only employed for his speaking and listening practice. I agre with Tdol, though, that you should be led by what is happening in her Spanish education. As soon as she is learning the alphabet and some basic reading, I would say that's the perfect time to teach her the alphabet in English too. That would be the closest you'll get to helping her to be bilingual as she will be learning both languages alongside each other. Of course, if you only teach her for a brief period each week, her Spanish will be much better but I think the earlier the better for the whole lot - reading, writing and speaking.
Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.
You can teach "writing" in the sense of arranging letters to make words or getting her to match the letters to the sounds, without having to actually pick up a pen. With a pack of scrabble tiles (or something a bit more colourful and fun), for example.
Thank you for your replies. I just wouldn't like to start with writing too early and get her confused or something. I'm getting really good results with speaking and listening now.
I think kids benefit from spelling and writing after age 7, at the earliest. I have taught to many children from 5-vowel languages, and for them, it's initially all about pronouncing the vowels. Note that, if they can already read Spanish, their pronunciation of J, H and Y will be way off, and they won't notice this unless you point it out.
Thank you, I already have problems with sh for example (t-shirt, pronounced like t-churt, like teacher). But she's very bright, she'll quickly overcome that. :)