Federal Member for Hume Angus Taylor is encouraging local preschools to introduce kids to a new language in 2018 through Early Learning Languages Australia (ELLA).
The program engages preschoolers with languages other than English through a series of fun, play-based apps, which are aligned to the Early Years Learning Framework.
Recent independent reports had shown the ELLA program was successfully engaging children with language learning and raising awareness of other cultures.
“By providing the opportunity for preschoolers to undertake language learning, they’re not only getting exposure to a second language, but they’re also improving their developmental and cognitive capabilities as well,” Mr Taylor said.
ELLA is designed for use by educators who do not have formal language training, with extensive support provided through a suite of resources, including training support and apps for educators and families to assist in the effective delivery of the program.
Mr Taylor said the program was part of the Turnbull Government’s efforts to boost language learning backed by $15.7 million in funding.
Nearly 1850 preschools are participating in the 2017 ELLA program including Sugar and Spice Preschool and Long Daycare Centre in Picton, Kindy Patch at Camden, Gumnut Kidz Preschool and Early Years Learning Centre at Narellan, Reynolds Street Community Preschool and Orana Preschool, both in Goulburn.
“I urge eligible services in Hume to get their application in as soon as possible to give our local preschoolers a head start in language learning and spark their interest in other cultures,” Mr Taylor said.
Next year, preschools in Hume will be able to select from languages including Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese and Spanish as well as new additions to ELLA in 2018, Hindi and Modern Greek.
Applications are now open for the ELLA program, while the Turnbull Government is also providing 1,000 grants of $500 to assist with the purchase of tablet devices and accessories to help preschools take part in the program.
Applications close on December 15. For more information and to submit an application, visit www.ella.edu.au