This is revised from a previous post, and is for all the Dads out there wondering why they are being left out of the party... Traditionally, bilingualism research used the term "Mother Tongue" to describe the language spoken by the mother. Because there is no use of "Father Tongue" there is an implication that the … Continue reading Mother Tongue, Father Tongue?
Over the last decade or so, the OPOL method of raising bilingual children has gotten a lot of positive press. It sounds pretty simple - One parent, one language. So I speak French to my kids and my husband speaks English to them, and they will grow up bilingual. Sounds easy, yes? But the reality, … Continue reading Being an OPOL family – guarantee of success?
Our parents are very demanding and want to have a teacher who speaks Oxford English without any accent or so. Reblogging this great post that reflects on the tricky issue of accents - whose is better, whose is worse, and why? And then again, why should it really matter??? Diary of an Imperfect Mum: In 2014 … Continue reading Diary of an Imperfect Mum: In 2014 do accents still really matter?
One of the best thing about being bilingual is being able to pick and choose le juste mot - to say exactly what you want to say. Some of the greatest words in language relate to how people think and see the world, so it follows that some things just can't be said "right" in … Continue reading Being Bilingual: Words I like from other languages…
So, here we are officially summer and officially on summer vacation. This summer brings a lot of major events for my kids; we are taking our now-six year old twins to the US and Canada (their passport countries) for the first time. They are interested and intrigued to meet people who can "only speak English" … Continue reading Summer resolutions, linguistics-style
Unfortunately, most bilingual families go through this crisis at some point; despite best efforts to provide good and consistent input, despite the ability to use the language if necessary... most bilingual kids, at some point, figure out which language gets them the most effect for the least effort, and choose to use that language, all … Continue reading “But she won’t speak *my* language…”
Over the last decade or so, the OPOL method of raising bilingual children has gotten a lot of positive press. It sounds pretty simple - One parent, one language. So I speak French to my kids and my husband speaks English to them, and they will grow up bilingual. Sounds easy, yes? But the reality, … Continue reading OPOL: Does it always work?
Whether you are an expat family considering a new local language for your children, or a family dealing with multiple languages, the concern about amount of language is the same. How much of a language, over what time frame, is enough for bilingualism to be successful? Or at the least, how much is enough to … Continue reading How much (insert language here) is enough?
This is just a brief post on a reflection I had while on holidays. We went to Scotland for two weeks, with English-speaking family. About 10 days into our trip, I got a call from someone in the Netherlands. Now, my Dutch is reasonable, and I can usually understand and make myself understood without too … Continue reading Lessons from Scotland: Use it or lose it!
In my work with families, I also come up against the Native Speaker Myth. For families trying to plan for successful bilingualism for their children, this myth has different implications, but can be equally damaging. One of the first things I do with each family I work with is discuss the necessity of setting language … Continue reading Talking to Native Speakers – Part II