Sunday, June 18, 2017
Raising bilingual kids
Tips on teaching a second language to children
1. Start as young as one year old (or younger!). Speak the second language to your child. Start with small words - common words then gradually using phrases, and eventually sentences. Keep repeating the words, phrases.
2. Do not be afraid to speak both English and the second language (in our case, Filipino). The child will not grow up confused. On the contrary, the child's brain is so malleable that their brain will shift from both languages at ease. Just like second nature to them, this is teaching their brain to think in both languages.
3. Encourage people around your child who know that second language (ours being Filipino) to speak to child in that language! I asked my siblings, other relatives, and friends to speak to our little one in Filipino. They thought it was awkward - but my reasoning is - who else will speak to my little one in Filipino?? (Aside from me and hubby of course!)
4. Encourage your child to speak that second language. I would encourage my little girl to speak Filipino by asking her to reply to me in Filipino, when I speak to her in Filipino. She can speak English when spoken to in English.
5. Watch kids learning videos in the second language. Perhaps a show counterpart of Sesame Street in your own language. I watched some youtube videos of Batibot. There wasn't a lot of videos, so I eventually resorted to 'light' Philippine teleserye with my child, as well as Kulilits, Epol Apol, etc.
6. Sing nursery rhymes, songs in the second language.
7. Buy books in the second language. For older kids, workbooks and short stories.
8. Practice writing in the second language. Start with small words, then gradually as your child's vocabulary increases, try bigger words. Perhaps while doing homework, have a quick spelling test in the second language.
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