admin's blog

23
Aug

Banking on the late August bank holiday - just how did bank holidays begin, anyway?

In England, late August sees the final bank holiday of the year. Traditionally, it’s a time for day trippers to head for the nearest beach, complete with bucket and spade. The theory is that we can all enjoy a final day of glorious sunshine and relaxation before preparing for any new school terms, heading off to university for the first time, or starting to prepare for the longer nights and shorter days of autumn.

Read more

16
Aug

Poet laureate or children's laureate - what's the difference?

You’ve probably guessed that we love all things storytelling here at Mantra Lingua. We don’t mind if it takes the form of a picture book, or a dramatic performance, or a story or song with actions, or (one of our favourites) rhyme or chanting. And we’re always delighted to hear about new story champions for children. Now that the dust has settled from the excitement of the appointment of Cressida Cowell as Children’s Laureate for the next two years, we thought we’d take a quick look at what “Laureate” actually means.

Read more

16
Aug

The elephant in the room? A few facts about our largest land animal

You might have noticed that Mantra Lingua’s logo includes at least one elephant – so we thought it might be quite fun to have a look at a few elephant facts. You probably already know that the elephant is the world’s largest land animal, and that they have rather large ears and a splendid trunk, but there are many other facts you might not know.

Natural history experts now think there are 3 species of elephant (they used to think it was 2). The species are the African bush elephant, the African forest elephant, and the Asian elephant.

Read more

09
Aug

Do you know your ELGs from your EYFS? How Mantra Lingua can help Early Years Literacy

While literacy isn’t the only area of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) where Mantra Lingua’s products can help with Early Learning Goals, one of our specialist areas is storytelling, in all its forms.

How can Mantra Lingua help in the Early Years Foundation Stages?

Literacy is a lifelong skill: it’s the key to many other subjects, and essential for educational, social and, later on, career development. It’s not surprising, therefore, that the EYFS curriculum gives so much emphasis to Early Learning Goals (ELGs) in this area.

Read more

07
Aug

Language sponges of the world unite – how effective are bilingual books in early years education?

You know that nagging suspicion we’ve always had that babies who are brought up bilingual from birth are actually, well, wired a little differently when it comes to acquiring languages? Well, it turns out we were absolutely correct – according to the Infant Speech Perception Lab at McGill University in Canada, anyway.

Research into bilingualism

Read more

31
Jul

Blooms, butterflies, moths – and maps? Yes, it’s time for the Big Butterfly Count Again

If you’re lucky enough to be on holiday at the moment, you might well be enjoying a little relaxation time in your garden, or a local park or nature reserve, enjoying the fresh air and flowers and being aware of the local fauna as well, including insects.

Read more

29
Jul

Weather-wise – weather sayings or scientific facts, which are more accurate in predicting the weather?

Whether you love the weather or loathe the weather, it affects all of us. In recent years, climate change has become much more evident, but have you ever wondered how people used to forecast the weather in the old days? Now that we have the Met Office and amazing apps and computer software to help alert us to what’s heading our way, we sometimes forget that for centuries farmers and others used to use signs from the natural world to determine what lay ahead.

Read more

29
Jul

Sing something simple – using songs for language learning

What’s the first nursery rhyme you remember learning in your native language? Chances are, it was set to music, whether it was a version of Frere Jacques or Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.

Songs make an excellent teaching and learning tool for all kinds of subjects, including foreign language learning or English as Another Language. Even for adults, putting prosaic things like shopping lists or task lists to a familiar tune can also be a great way to remember what you need to do.

Read more

25
Jul

Dual Language Story Books - Welcome, Bienvenu, Come on In

While there are more dual language books available than there used to be, most of the fiction titles out there are either translations of well-established classics or limited to a very small number of language pairs. In the past, parallel texts used to be a popular method of teaching classical Greek and Latin. If you’re looking for dual language stories, then your choice is reasonably broad for French/English; Spanish/English; German/English; Japanese/English and Chinese/English.

What’s a dual language book?

Read more

Pages