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Nicky Burt

Nicky Burt

Kindergarten native English teacher and also a TEFL teacher for teenagers to adults.

Location Budapest, Hungary



  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    This was such a wonderful course where I have taken on board so many new ideas. The most successful thing so far has been the 'Learning time with Shaun and Timmy' app I passed on to the parents at my teacher/parent meetings. They were so happy that I could finally recommend a really suitable and age appropriate app for their children to continue with their...

  • I gave all the parents in my group on the first week the link for "Learning time with Shaun and Timmy" which has been successful.
    I will definitely be purchasing the certificate at the weekend once I have completed the course fully and am certainly interested in doing more courses.
    Will there be any more courses related to Kindergarten age again?
    What plans...

  • •Children can’t really learn a language if they are playing. DISAGREE
    •Never force a child to speak, they will when they are ready. AGREE
    •Children learn best when they are interested in something. AGREE
    •Children pick up languages best if there is a context and reason to use it. AGREE

  • Another informative week. I really enjoyed unit 6.7 Asessment in Early Childhood where it is mentioned that we should base assessment on what a child can do rather than what they can't do and not be assessed through tests and exams but rather through free play where they can express themselves freely.

  • The video is really informative with lots of visual examples. The variation of the observations was also interesting. I really liked the idea of the tracking sheet.

  • I agree with James that there are many things we can't assess, like open mindedness, curiosity, determination, resilience, self-belief. Those are many things that would be very, very difficult to assess. Therefore the danger is, that when we focus on assessments, especially within the early years, we start to narrow the field, narrow what we value. We all want...

  • As always emphasised, each child is unique. Some children respond quicker to the English language than others. It is important to make ALL the children feel safe, secure and valued in the classroom, giving them time to adjust.

  • When I introduce a new activity, I always demonstrate and model the words. Then I pretend to forget the words so that the children have to 'help' me and eventually take control of the activity. It is always important to have a back up activity as sometimes the preferred activity doesn't always work so it is vital to engage all the children to benefit their...

  • Sharing information is vital. If a child is shy and reluctant to speak English in the group setting but at home he enjoys a particular English tv programme or app game then talking about this in class is a great daily ice breaker. The child realises that you have a genuine interest about them and slowly they begin to open up and try and speak in English. I...

  • I agree. Assessment is not tests, reports and grading. It is making notes, observing and sharing achievements and concerns to help the child progress and further their English knowledge.

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    As I detailed in the previous unit I was actually on my way out of the class to go to the art store room when I overheard two children helping another child pronounce a word in English. Whilst trying to remain unobtrusive I continued to listen to their conversation. I was thrilled to hear them speaking just in English when their native language is Hungarian....

  • I was actually on my way out of the class to go to the art store room when I overheard two children helping another child pronounce a word in English. Whilst trying to remain unobtrusive I continued to listen to their conversation. I was thrilled to hear them speaking just in English when their native language is Hungarian. Not once did they switch to their...

  • Encouragement and praise is a key word in our class. It is also important to show and express genuine praise when they have achieved or done something worth praising.
    I agree that parents love to hear about their child's English development and something that they may have done well in that day.

  • I totally agree with Lucy Lau's comments.
    In my class we have 27 children, many of them with some form of problems/disabilities so observing them regularly helps me to understand and emphasize which areas of development need more focus.

  • I agree that young children don't need the stress of a formal assessment. By giving children art and craft activities you can measure their progress by observing and listening to them and how well they communicate with other children. Remember that every child is unique and will learn at their own pace.

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    Each child should have their own file where notes of assessments and observations can be recorded. The files should also be available to the parents to view about their child's progress and discussions can be had on how to help and improve areas of their child's development.

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    Another great week with so many interesting points.
    I also liked the link "Don’t Expect Toddlers To Behave Consistently — They Literally Can’t" by Annie Reneau as it explains so much.
    I also am pleased that my "all about my child" form was mentioned in the video and also liked and commented by other learners, thank you :)

  • As always, I found the videos interesting and informative. I particularly enjoyed unit 5.10: Enabling Environments.

  • Useful and interesting links again, thank you.

  • I totally agree and children feel a sense of belonging when they know that their culture and background are valued.
    I work in a bilingual kindergarten in Budapest, Hungary and many of the Hungarian and English traditions differ. The Hungarian's don't really celebrate Halloween, but because it is a big tradition in England, we have a Halloween week in the...

  • My ideal setting for a child-friendly environment would be to have lots of natural light with bright coloured walls. There would be an art corner where children could paint, model with plasticine, draw and to also include a sand tray and water tray with plenty of materials. Another corner would be a reading corner with a fake grass carpet that children could...

  • 'When you use songs and nursery rhymes, help children understand the words by using actions as well'.
    I always try and use actions and/or puppets to go with the songs or verses. If I am teaching a song for the first time, I have the children sit on the carpet all facing me. I sing the song complete with the actions a few times by myself and then ask the...

  • Thank you Sheona :)

  • It is important to have a strong relationship between families and early childhood settings because with communication, teachers can adjust the environment or the program if necessary. The physical setting should be equipped with play items and free from risks to encourage children to explore and play.
    At home an enabling environment would most likely be the...

  • Before a child starts at our kindergarten, there is a form for the parents to fill in about their child called 'All about my child'. This forms details things like favourite colour, toy, food; if they have any pets or siblings; do they know any English etc. The form is emailed to the parents before the children start and the parents email it back. This way, it...

  • Firstly, the teacher is at eye level with the children.
    The children appear to be happy and participating. The teacher relates to the children personally by praising them individually at the end so that they feel valued.

  • The key person's role is very important. If a child can't or doesn't trust you or feel safe and secure then the child will very unhappy and not learn and could even become withdrawn. The same could be said with the parents, if there are issues between yourself and the parents, this can also reflect badly upon the child. Any issues arising with parents should...

  • In the kindergarten I work at in Hungary, I am the English teacher working daily alongside two Hungarian teachers (one in the morning and the other the afternoon, but both are there from 11.30-13.30). Although every group has a head Hungarian teacher, we are all equal when it comes to being a key person. We all have equal contact and good relations with the...

  • I come from a family with lots of first and second cousins and other relatives. I always felt safe and could enjoy myself with all of them, even the sleepovers at various great aunts, aunts and uncles, great grandparents and grandparents.
    As a child I would love to watch my dad paint and for my 3rd birthday he bought me a proper paintbrush and we would paint...

  • Happy children make for happy learning. The more the child feels safe, secure the happier they are to learn by joining in activities with confidence and not feeling afraid to explore or try something new.

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    This will be my lunch hour so fingers crossed I'll be able to make it this time :)

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    A positive relationship is to build a secure environment for the children to feel safe. It is all about building trust and enjoying yourself with the children so that they feel the same way.
    An enabling environment plays a key role in supporting children's learning and development. It is well recognised that children learn and develop best in caring,...

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    I went to pre-school almost 50 years ago so things were very different then. however, I do recall looking at the art easel and thinking that giants come here because the easels were so tall! But we actually stood on little stools to reach them to be able to paint.
    I also developed new friendships and learnt about social skills and sharing.

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    I have had my group of children since the age of three and this is my third and last year with them before they move to school. They still love the story of the Hungry Caterpillar by Erik Carle. We are at the stage now where the children pretend to be the various fruits and one child is the caterpillar and they tell the story.

  • I always find the video's useful and interesting. I know my role of a native English kindergarten teacher is benefitting greatly from this course.

  • At my parents meetings, i gave each parents the link for the Learning Time with Timmy app. It has been really successful because the children love playing it and the parents are happy that the children are furthering their English language education. I have downloaded the 'chocolate cake' song from the British council site. I am going to change the words to...

  • I always try to make the activities as meaningful and interactive as possible with a warm and secure environment. I don't like to have the children sitting for too long so I break up the activity with interactive movements and sometimes allow the children to take control of the activity or lesson especially when telling a familiar story. If the children have...

  • I work in a kindergarten where everything is project based. A project last between 4-6 weeks and covers everything that was mentioned in the video. The project was "Autumn treasures". Each day we focus on something particular ie: Monday is environment (we went outside and collected autumn leaves, chestnuts and sticks. Tuesday is art so we painted some oak...

  • I had some of the ideas but Sarah highlighted many more. I had forgotten about the use of spatial awareness, so thank you.

  • The first activity has the children learning the word 'tent' as they use their colouring book to colour just the tents. This is helping their fine motor skills.
    The second activity has the children learning the name, sounds and actions of animals in this physical activity. This is helping their gross motor skills.
    Both activities allow the children to gain...

  • The teacher is modelling the words WET and DRY and also the name of the animals. She also uses the actions to describe the words so the children can understand better. The children really enjoyed this activity as it was hands on.

  • Every opportunity is important to communicate with the children in English.

  • 1 Paint: I would use vocabulary regarding texture and colours.
    2 Musical instruments: I would use vocabulary such as sounds and naming the instruments.
    3 Plasticine: Here I would use vocabulary regarding colours, shapes and sizes.
    4. Dress up: I would use vocabulary regarding clothes, sizes, colours and where on the body do they go?

  • I think that the role of the adult is essential in children learning English as a second language. We should act as guides to help maximise their potential learning whilst providing them with a natural environment as possible where they are free to express by themselves comfortably.

  • Outside play or using small puppet theatres can provide a vast opportunities of language development.

  • All of the activities shown in the video provide opportunities to acquire not only the specific language required, but also to enhance the child's cognitive development through imaginative and personalised additions in the arts and crafts lesson.
    1. Blocks: talking about colours, shapes, sizes
    2. Dressing up: clothes vocabulary, words related to the...

  • I use a lot of puppets when telling a story. I repeat a story for 1-2 weeks and after a while, I have the children interact with the puppets then eventually have the children retell parts of the story or the whole story. they absolutely love it as I then have to sit on a small chair and be in the audience.
    Songs are also a great way for children to learn. I...

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    Ensure you create a comfortable and happy environment. In my experience, children in my group have learned most of their English through free play. Breakfast time has become an important part of their language development because we have time to talk and discuss many general and basic things. At first it was simple things like 'I am eating porridge with honey....

  • Nicky Burt made a comment

    I remember watching my mum and also my nan baking from a very early age and began to help them stir the cake mixture before being allowed to later crack eggs and eventually doing the whole process myself. The skills I learned especially at first was concentration followed by verbal instructions. Fine motor skills were developed and this was also a maths...