Learning English as an additional language presents people of all ages with a lot of opportunities to widen their horizons. English, after all, is one of the most widely spoken languages—and the most popular choice for a second language—in the world. It’s the most widely used language in international discourse, publication, telecommunication, and trade, in addition to being the basis for the international language of seafaring and aviation. Moreover, many of the languages used in computer programming are based on English. An adult who has a good grasp of this common language, then, has a better chance of finding and maximizing international career opportunities compared to someone who’s not well-versed in using the language in communicating with others.

What to Look for in an English as an Additional Language Program in Singapore

In addition to contributing to a person’s academic and professional growth in their adult years, gaining a level of proficiency in the English language as a young student in Singapore has its own advantages. Studies show that bilingualism can improve the brain’s executive function and promote greater cognitive development, for one. For another, being able to understand a common language gives a young student access to a rich archive of knowledge, the means to connect with a wider network of people, and the capability to develop deeper insights into other cultures and beliefs. 

Joining an English as an Additional Language (EAL) program offered by an American education Singapore school is a great way for your child to grasp the intricacies and nuances of English. Here are 4 tell-tale signs that you’ve enrolled your child in an EAL program that’s right for them. 

The Program Considers Your Child’s English Competency Level

The ideal English as an Additional Language program should be tailored to meet your child’s particular language needs. The teachers must be able to assess your child’s grasp of the English language and come up with a course of study that will help your child improve from their current level of competency. Meeting the student halfway by taking their mastery of the language into consideration will prevent the child from getting bored or too overwhelmed with the lessons. This, in turn, can help foster their lifelong passion for developing their English comprehension and communication skills.

The Program Employs Teachers Who Specialize in Language Acquisition

More than just an academic subject, an EAL program aims to elevate a student’s overall fluency and mastery of the English language. Teachers who specialize in language acquisition understand this, which is why they make an effort to coordinate with their students’ homeroom teachers and teachers in other classes. Rather than just transmit the intricacies of the language in their class, language teachers must ensure that the students are able to use what they learned in the EAL program in their other subjects. Being able to comprehend and follow English instructions in art class or explain math concepts in English are good signs that a student is gaining mastery of the language. These are marks of progress that EAL teachers must not overlook.

The English Language Is Integrated into the Child’s Everyday Life

It takes a village to ensure that a child develops mastery of an additional language. Providing a school environment where a student can always find an opportunity to use their English language skill is an important part of the equation for long-term success. Perhaps the students can practice speaking in English while ordering food at the canteen; maybe they can follow instructions in the said language while participating in club activities; perchance, they could also take part in social activities conducted in English in between and after classes. The school environment should encourage learners to try applying their English lessons and to challenge themselves to improve their mastery of the language over time.

The School Offers Facilities and Activities That Support Continuous Language Education

Learning languages is a lifelong affair, and schools that offer an EAL program should be capable of supporting their student’s efforts to improve their English language skill while they’re enrolled in the said academic institution. Even after a student has completed the basic EAL program and developed a satisfactory grasp of the English language, the school should still offer them opportunities to further improve their mastery of the language at their own pace. Perhaps, this can come in the form of an extensive library of English-language books, debates and essay writing contests, or club activities where EAL program graduates can interact with and assist new students in their language lessons. 

A good EAL program not only enhances a child’s mastery of the English language but also raises their level of confidence in their language skills. An English language school that possesses all the qualities mentioned above should be able to transform EAL students into lifelong language learners with a passion for clear communication and openness to different cultures and perspectives.