Pediatricians around the world encourage parents to raise bilingual children. If parents come from different cultures, it is much easier to raise a child with two different languages. However, if both parents speak the same language then it’s great to have a foreign language babysitter or sign your child for the foreign language day care.
Naomi Steiner M.D., developmental and behavioral pediatrician at the Floating Hospital for Children, and an author of 7 steps to raising a Bilingual Child says “babies are wired for language” and explains that it’s of great value to introduce your child with the second language as early as possible. Raising a bilingual child shows some pretty interesting benefits later in the child’s life and learning. These children show excellent reading and writing skills in both languages and they also show improved analytic skills along with creative thinking and a better ability for problem solving.
In the Raising Bilingual Children: First 5 Steps to succeed you can find a few interesting tips on how to start a bilingual raising and how teaching a child to speak two or more languages has never been easier.
Don’t forget that the language acquisition in the age of 0 – 6 is on the highest level, therefore encourage your toddlers and pre-schoolers to speak more than 1 language. Make sure you don’t keep the second language passive. Use it as much as you use the first language.
Use bilingual interactive sound books, Practical guides as well as many other ideas for bilingual families. Be determent, share positive energy and play games by using both languages. It pays off. You will be able to see the results the day your child starts school.