Firstly, I’d like to say that I think there should be more books for kids about being bilingual. I’ve had an idea in my head for years for a children’s book, but it’s still in my head…
Bilingual books are important not only to help children achieve literacy in both languages, but also to help them integrate their two (or more worlds) and see them represented in the same stories and books – much as the two or more sides of themselves, culturally, are integrated into one person. They are also very important for showing minority language speakers that their language has as much value and use as the school language, and for helping parents participate in the literacy process in their own language.
Diglot Books, make great bilingual books for kids, including an outstanding alphabet series – what bilingual child has not been confused when faced with a monolingual alphabet book? The unfortunate thing is that there are not so many books and languages available through Diglot – developing these books and getting good translations and getting them printed is all expensive in an increasingly digital world. So, if you are looking for books with Cornish (yes, really!), Dutch, French, Portuguese, Italian, Spanish or Welsh, this site is for you.
Nik Nak is a Belgian organisation that produces bilingual books in Dutch and other languages. They have quite a wide range of languages, many of which are minority languages, which is great. I’ve heard (anecdotally) that some of the translations are not fantastic but in my opinion, a bilingual book in the hand is worth two in the head…
Readers – please comment on this if you know of other bilingual book resources for children – I’d like to build up a hopefully-comprehensive list on my resources page.
Thank you for writing this, Eowyn – Zazoo is another great series of bilingual books for kids: http://www.littlebilingues.com/method.html
This not precisely book store but a great effort of a mother in multilinguism
I am curious to see your thoughts on this