Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Raising Bilingual Children; Tell us your story.

Raising bilingual or trilingual children takes quite a bit of effort. It doesn't just happen. Parents need to make a conscious effort to provide an environment that is conducive to learning two or three languages well. In our home, Spanish is spoken by both parents and German in school and with grandma and English in school and in the community at large. Ours is just one way of raising bilingual children. Families need to find what works for them. Some families opt to have each parent speak a different language. A friend of mine grew up speaking Russian and German this way with English in school. Others find that it is simply easier to have both parents speak the same language, assuming that both do. The most difficult option tends to be when one parent speaks English and the other a different language. In this scenario, English often tends to win out unless the parent using the non-English language is extremely determined to push their language with the children.

We would love to hear what has worked for you and what hasn't. It is inspiring to hear about others and their experiences. Share your stories about the trials and triumphs you have faced in raising bilingual children. We look forward to hearing from you.

1 comment:

Familia Cazorla Wood said...

Hi there- we are trying to raise our kids to be bilingual and it sure has some challenge. I appreciate your posts. Do you know of any bilingual playgroups?