Bilingual children: truths and myths
Nowadays the world is more globalized. Communicating with people who speak a different language is a necessity. Being bilingual is unquestionably an advantage. The list of benefits is numerous.
It develops cognitive skills; it helps to focus; it reduces dementia in old age and so on.
How about children? For years common beliefs asserted that raising bilingual children can bring problems and learning disorders, causing kids a sense of confusion.
The truth says many studies and experiments show the contrary. Children who grow up bilingual develop better their creativity and thoughts. As adults, they will be open-minded, flexible and ready to welcome diversity.
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What does for a parent mean raising a bilingual child? It takes dedication and perseverance.
• Getting started right away is essential. Introducing kids to a new language before the age of five will help them in pronunciation and intonation. It is thought that speaking a second language while the child is in the womb may have already benefits at birth.
• Creating opportunities in which to use the second language is valuable. For instance, send your kids to bilingual nurseries or schools, or find babysitters who talk to them in a different language, with accurate pronunciations during play activities.
• How to teach a new language in a fun but efficient manner? The answer is during playtime. Children quickly learn through play. You can create fun activities in which to expand children’s vocabulary, naming objects or countries in maps using a second language.
• Singing and using music is an excellent help to memorize words and idioms. Also watching movies and cartoons in original language helps a lot.
• Those parents willing to teach your native language, do not let this perceived as unimportant by your kids. Speak as much as possible with them even if circumstances lead your children to speak their most primary language.
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