Bringing up a Child in a Multilingual Environment
If your child is in a cosmopolitan neighbourhood or a member of a bilingual family, it is likely that your child will learn two or more languages simultaneously. Raising your child in a multilingual environment is both challenging and advantageous.
Benefits of Being Multilingual
Exposure to multiple languages makes your kid more creative and improves his or her problem solving skills. Learning multiple languages in childhood makes it easier to learn other languages in the future.
Do not mix languages in one sentence while talking to your kid. If your child mixes up languages, try to correct by using the proper word in each language.
Tips to Help your Child Grow in a Multilingual Environment:
Your child should first understand the significance of learning each language. This can be achieved by exposing the child to different languages in different settings. Some suggested methods for this are:
- One parent, one language method - During the first years of a child’s life, each parent speaks a different language at home. For example, if the father speaks only in English to the child, the mother uses the mother tongue such as Tamil, Hindi or Bengali.
- Minority language at home method - In this approach, the kid speaks only in the mother tongue at home and speaks just English at school.
Your child can easily learn languages through hobbies. For example, if your child is fond of music or rhymes, you can play songs or recite rhymes in multiple languages.
Open up a world of possibilities by encouraging multilingual environment.