Do you know what a tilt train is? Do you know how it is different to an ordinary train? A friend of mine took her young son on a tilt train to Bundaberg. When they got to their destination the little boy asked everyone in sight, “What is a tilt train?” No one could tell him. He came back to Toowoomba and found the answer on Google. It is terrible that some Queenslanders don’t know about their home environment.This writing is about vocabulary results driven by everyday experiences.
Unperturbed,the little boy chatted away about the tilt train and other trains that he had travelled on. Without realising, he was comparing the trains, quite a high level skill for a little fella. His trip up north was filled with new experiences that would ultimately improve his reading and writing. Can you imagine this boy reading a story or a nonfiction book about trains? He would read easily because he could understand the vocabulary. Words like, platform, tilt train, baggage carriage, and dining cart would all have a personal meaning because he has learnt the words in a natural context.
I listened in awe at the efforts of this young mother creating an exciting holiday for her child. She retold her holiday stories and I realised that not only was the trip a holiday, it was a time when the two of them spent quality time building relationship, having fun and learning. Learning from new experiences and adding new words to one’s vocabulary can be great fun as this mother instinctively knew.
I had a bigger laugh when I was told about the daily chats that the little boy and his mother had with the local bus driver. This man was truly comical. He knew that the two visitors didn’t know anything about Bundaberg. Every morning he would say,
“Where to today, folks? “ Every day the visitors would say the same thing,
“We don’t know. Where do you think we should go?”
“I don’t know. I am only the bus driver.”
The young boy would laugh and laugh, he looked forward with anticipation to the conversation each day, knowing that it would be the same as the day before. I bet you that this fun loving bus driver will appear in a story at school. And I can just see the little boy giggling as he retold the unforgettable story.
The above examples are all simple experiences that can happen every day for any child. All it takes is a little time and planning to see language results soar. Sit back and enjoy your child’s exhilaration while learning in the company of the most important people in his life.
Lastly, do you know what a tilt train is?
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Ann Foster is a talented teacher that makes certain that each child reaches his potential. Ann owns an online tutoring business that prides itself on delivering amazing results in the areas of reading, writing and spelling.