Preschool children can learn English for free

Written by: 
Jennifer Herrera~Multimedia Journalist

English Language Teaching and Learning at BYU-Hawaii is sponsoring a free program to teach English to children from ages 4 to 5 years old for whom English is their second language.

The BYUH early childhood education and ESL staff designed the free English curriculum. The program is helping children as well as education and TESOL majors prepare for their careers, said organizers.

"This semester we have TESOL majors teach to help them practice being a teacher for young leaners. It’s a great opportunity for us education or TESOL majors to teach a young learner before we go out into the working field," said Apple Yip a senior in Education from Hong Kong. “We gain a lot of wordily experience from this class. We have a lot of fun because we are the ones who plan and we are the ones who teach and make improvements to make the class more successful in the feature. It is a good learning experience for the child and the teacher.” She added, “So far the program has been a success. The turn out has been really good, and each week we teach a different subject or lesson such as the alphabet, animals and help in how to express yourself in English, how to write, practice and have fun in an English."

Paul Tovey, a sophomore majoring in hospitality and tourism management from Laie, said, “In such an international school, many of [the students] have kids that speak their parents’ native language and having parents in America, their children have an awesome opportunity to learn English while they are here as well. I think it’s a great idea.”

Josephine Nair, a junior in social work from Fiji, said, “My primary language is Fijian. I don’t have kids right now but when I do I want them to learn both languages, perhaps Fijian being their first language. This program is a great idea because teaching a child English at a young age will help children feel more confident in expressing themselves in different languages.”

Classes are offered at the BYUH Stake Center Nursery room every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 4 to 5 p.m. Enrollment can be made over the phone or in person. “You can contact Rebecca Li at 808-499-9868, or myself, Apple Yip at 808-234-3782, to enroll your child over the phone. Or you can walk in and we can enroll your child immediately,” said Yip.

Deadlines for enrollment are coming soon. Yip said, “Open enrollment is at the beginning of every semester. We have very active children who love to express themselves and share with everyone what they think. Children have a great potential to learn because of this program."

For more information, contact Yip at rpyli@go.byuh.edu.