Oxford University Press SA launches bilingual dictionaries for children struggling with vocabulary

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“Children do not have enough vocabulary and grammar to make sense of what they are reading.” Photo: Supplied / Oxford University Press.

The CAPS English First Additional Language for Levels 1 to 3 makes it clear that children are often able to decode in their additional language, but are unable to understand what they are reading. This results in what some people call “barking at the impression”.

This program says that this is the main reason why children are unable to understand texts because their language skills are poor. They lack sufficient vocabulary and grammar to make sense of what they read.

It gets even more complicated when they have to learn another language besides the one they are struggling with.

Although many schools try to help in this regard, lack of vocabulary is a problem.

Read: “Kaaps deserves respect”: readers react to the development of the Kaaps dictionary

To help solve this problem, Oxford University Press South Africa has launched the brand new second edition of the very popular Oxford First Bilingual Dictionary, now available in English + isiZulu / isiXhosa / Afrikaans / Sesotho sa Leboa / Setswana / Sesotho.

The dictionary features a thematic spread that provides the essential high-frequency vocabulary that children need to speak at ease in different languages, while the color illustrations provide further opportunities for vocabulary development, storytelling, stories and language games.

Working with experienced teachers, language experts have calculated that you need to know around 3,000 frequently used words in a target language to be able to speak it at a basic level.

What to look for in this dictionary

The new dictionary specializes in this thematic approach to learning, which will enrich vocabulary and promote comprehension. It will provide plenty of opportunities for children to ask questions, tell and listen to stories, play language games, act out scenarios and practice conversations.

It will allow reading and writing activities as the vocabulary, comprehension and mastery of grammar of the child increase.

For children who are learning an additional language, the bilingual dictionary is preferable to promote understanding of the target language vocabulary.

Once your child has mastered their additional language, they will be ready to switch to a unilingual dictionary.

The dictionary is available at www.oxford.co.za for R149.95.

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