Teaching Baby Two Languages

The moment you are pregnant, you’ll start experiencing numerous suggestions from your friends to teach your child various languages. Families today want to uphold their heritage language, and there’s absolutely an increased interest in introducing non-native secondary languages, particularly English, if it’s not the family’s first language.

And it is natural that you want to expose your child in different languages before he or she gets to school. Teaching baby two languages can be very beneficial during their early childhood and can be anincredible help in his or her life, but many of us fail to recognize the significance of it.

Why to Teach Baby Two Languages

Language learning can be a rewarding experience, and the more languages one can speak, the better opportunity one will have in many ways. The younger the age is, the easier it is to pick up a new language. Introduction of a second language to your child allows him or her to explore and instinctively understand the fun in learning a new language. Ability to speak in a second language can always widen the horizons of your children. There are numerous benefits associated with learning a new language, and below are the some of the benefits:

Benefits

Description

Better Tests Performance

Studies have shown that students who have studied a foreign language perform better than those monolingual students. A report released by College Bound shows that students with more than 4 years of experience in a foreign language perform better than those with less than a year experience.

Better Reading Skills

A study shows that second language knowledge in children gives more advantage in learning. They can leverage their expertise of one language to another, and their extensive experience of language gives them an upper hand. This advantage continues and grows as they grow old.

Better Brain Development

Some research suggests that learning a new language helps in building the brain muscles, and it’s a good technique of flexing them, too. Learning a new language is like having some workouts for the brain. 

More Confidence

Learning new language can boost the confidence in your children and may lead to exploring more new things. Children are more confident from the feeling of accomplishment that they get when they learn a second language.

More Opportunities for College and Careers

Colleges increasingly value the ability of speaking more languages as the economic activities increase globally. So, knowing a second or a third language will make your child a more competitive candidate than others.

Wider Horizons of the World

Traveling overseas can be a more rewarding experience if you are comfortable with the language of your destination. Knowing the language would be an added advantage, which will make you feel like at home.

Better Bonding with the Family & Tradition

It’s such a wonderful feeling when one can communicate with another person in their mother tongue, but it’s even more incredible when one connect two traditions and cultures by learning and speaking their language. Also, it unites a family together, and a bond is built for eternity.

How to Teach Baby Two Languages

1. Join In an Immersion Program

Second language is included as part of the school’s curriculum in this program where all the teaching is placed in a classroom and is conducted in the language that the children are learning. This program is integrated from the preschool level. There are also some programs available only in a few schools, where non-native speaking students learn the local language from native speaking students; the program is known as a two-way bilingual immersion.

2. Try Extracurricular Programs

This language program is an ideal learning opportunity for such children whose school doesn’t incorporate bilingual education curriculum. This type of language learning program can be stressful for your children at times because the classes are generally conducted on a weekday afternoon or a weekend morning. You need to ensure that the routine of the classes are scheduled in such a way that your child isn’t mentally drained out.    

3. Use Books & Fun Videos

Reading to your child in the language that he or she is learning can be an effective technique. You can also use fun videos such as singing video, which is a good method to introduce and keep up the exposure of the second language to your kids.

4. Speak to Your Baby

It will be an added advantage for your children if you can speak to them in a foreign language. This will help in speeding up the learning process in a great way, and talking to your child in another language can become a part of your home life which makes learning a lot easier since it is used regularly.  

5. Make Learning a Game

Make learning a foreign language for your child natural and fun, like any other activities. Your child tends to learn a second language more easily if the learning process is like a game. There are many computer games that can help your children to learn, but the best results will be accomplished only if you practice the language with your child.

6. Take a Vacation to a Foreign Country

Many families discover that their children are more aware of another language over vacation; holidaying in foreign soil does offer an opportunity for your kids to experience other cultures and languages. Learning the culture can develop the interest in learning the language, thus making the learning process much easier.    

7. More Tips to Use at Home

  • Search for age-suitable music at your local library available in the second language.
  • Using bilingual toys is a great way to encourage a second language; the toys are readily available in many stores.
  • There are numerous foreign culture websites viewable in both the desired foreign language and English.
  • You can also check out the local foods in restaurant and go to those supermarkets housing ethnic foods and take a look of the labels. 
  • Start identifying the tags of household object in a foreign language.
  • Create an occasion to let your baby hear and practice foreign language by inviting people who speakthe language.

Common Concerns When Teaching Baby Two Languages

1. Can Teaching Baby Two Languages Lead to Speech Delays?

Several studies and research indicate that children brought up in dual language won’t slow down their speech development and language acquisition, even if your child has been identified as experiencing some sort of speech delay. However, some experts would recommend your bilingual child to focus only on one language if you have any concerns on his speech development. The truth is that both the bilingual and monolingual children develop the language skills at the same speed.      

2. Won’t My Baby Get Confused with Two Languages?

No, there is no inherent setback for a bilingual child in his environment; instead, children do perceive a richness of vocabulary and style. They can easily differentiate how one person is talking to another, such as whether the conversation is happening in a respectful manner or not. They are also very sensitive to the ways different people speak.

3. Won’t My Baby Mix Up Two Languages?

Using words from one language when speaking the other, known as code-switching, is a common thing in bilingual children. But, this doesn’t mean that the bilingual children are confused with the language they are speaking. Yet, bilingual children tend to use only the relevant language when speaking to monolinguals.

Want to teach your baby a foreign language in a simple and fun way? Check out this video: