Group for bilingualism and multiculturalism in education and society

If you do not speak your language to your children, you can begin now

1. Begin at a slow pace and as soon as possible, having in mind that your child may resist the abrupt change in your language use
2. Initially, you can translate certain words in the dominant language of your child, but should slowly stop this practice.
3. Begin the use of other language during activities that you have enough time to complete and when you can give ample explanations (eg. weekends when you usually have more time and less pressure). Progressively you add also other activities in the other language (eg. the bath, etc. , thus providing the occasion for your child to develop the relative vocabulary.
4. Read simple books to your children and later you can read more complex books, which will constitute an important source of vocabulary.
5. Progressively you can increase the time that you dedicate to the other language as you find activities, such as computer games, which will help your children enrich their vocabulary.
6. Encourage your children to answer in the other language
7. Don’t give up: Any progress in the other language is important and will constitute the basis for the further development of bilingualism in your child.

(Suggestions adapted from the book of Naomi Steiner (2008) 7 Steps to Raising a Bilingual Child, N.Y.: Amacom)

Seven Reasons for the development of bilingualism

1. Two languages mean double opportunities and double choices.
2. children learning two languages tend to be ahead in reading and counting. Often they do better at exams.
3. Learning two languages is easier for small children. Very soon they will be able to switch between their two languages and the whole family will be very proud.
4. Two languages offer better work opportunities.
5. Communicating in two languages opens doors to new friendships.
6. Most people around the world can use more than one languages. If you know two languages, you can easier learn a third one.
7. Both languages are sources of stories, songs and history. Your child will get the best of both worlds.


On this page we can answer your questions but also publish your suggestions. Contact Polydromo at polydromo@polydromo.gr


Bibliography and articles regarding bilingualism and learning methodologies

Shared Reading Within Latino Families: An Analysis of Reading Interactions and Language Use 2006 Terese C. Jiménez download
Strategies for Bilingual Maintenance: Case Studies of Mexican-Origin Families in Texas 1996 Robert Bayley download
Code Switching as a Communicative Strategy: A Case Study of Korean - English Bilinguals 2006 Haesook Han Chung download
Parental Language input patterns and children's billingual use 2007 Annick De Houwer download
Code-switching and the construction of ethnic identity in a community of practice 2007 Anna De Fina download
Mi Hija Vale Dos Personas_Latino Immigrant Parents’ Perspectives_About Their Children’s Bilingualism 2006 Jo Worthy and Alejandra Rodríguez-Galindo download
Young bilingual children learning to read with dual language books 2008 Raymonde Sneddon download
FaLang translation system by Faboba