Raising a multilingual child is something many parents want. They could have many reasons for this, ranging from better career and life opportunities to an improvement of cognitive functions. No matter the reason you may want to raise a multilingual kid, this is possible and also encouraged. Why?
When babies get born, they are born with the capacity of learning any language. They already recognize the voice of the mother and can also distinguish language patterns. Many parents think that babies are too small to learn some complex things, but this is not true. There are so many studies that show the positive effects of reading stories to your baby, even when he is still in your tomb. This is because babies have higher brain plasticity, meaning that they are born with the predisposition of being able to learn anything faster than adults. These are just some of the reasons why parents who want to raise a multilingual kid will succeed. But how can you do this?
Involve the Whole Family
As stated in some reports about learning languages by Mate McKay, an essay writer, one of the ways you can raise a multilingual kid is to involve the whole family. If you don’t live in a country where English is the mother tongue, then maybe English could become your kid’s second language. It is important to involve the whole family in this pursuit, as it can support your goals. If everyone is speaking the same foreign language in your house, your kid will surely and easily grasp the words and their meaning. Children are like sponges; they absorb every information they are faced with. So, speaking a foreign language during your family activities and involving the whole family will make learning easier for your kid.
One Parent One Language Strategy
There is a strategy that is mostly applied by foreign couples who live in another country. For example, let’s say a couple is living in the United States and they have a child. The mother is from Mexico, while the father is from France. If each parent would talk with the kid in their mother tongue, the kid will surely learn both languages, in this case, Spanish and French. However, the challenge will be when your kids will start going to kindergarten and school, where they will study in the local language.
And to make sure your kid still absorbs the words from other languages, he or she needs to be exposed to it about 30% of the time. One parent one language is a successful strategy that is usually practiced by immigrants, but it can be used by anyone. If a strategy is successful, why not put it to practice? You and your partner can talk different languages with your kid to raise him to be multilingual. But make sure each of you sticks to one language.
Introduce the Fun Factor
We all know that kids have so much energy. And they are also looking for fun and engaging activities. Only speaking with your kids in a foreign language is not enough to raise them to be multilingual. You need to also prepare some activities to help your kid grasp the subtle meanings of some words. And to make your kid interested in this activity which sometimes can be considered boring by them, you need to introduce the fun factor. Make sure you use flashcards, videos, songs, and games to catch the attention and interest of your kids. You can find many of these online, or you can design them by yourself. Either way, make sure they are appropriate for the age of your kids.
Constantly Hearing the Language
Kids can make the difference between the sounds that make words and, in the end, a language. But to make this differentiation and learn different words and so on, your kid needs to be constantly exposed to an environment where this happens. Only hearing you speaking is not enough. So, maybe you have some cartoons, videos, or songs in that language. You can play them for your kids and constantly expose them to hearing the language. Even though it may seem that they are not paying attention, they catch every word.
Don’t Push Your Kids
Sometimes, parents might forget that children have their own pace of doing and learning things. As adults, it is easy to forget that they are just getting to know the world and constantly learning things about it. They do not have the same experience and skills adults have, so make sure you give your kid time to develop and learn new languages. Don’t push your kids too far or too fast, because this can lead to demotivation. Kids need to be slowly introduced to new topics and languages, so make sure you give your kid the time and space he or she needs to acclimate to the new language.
Don’t Forget That They Are Kids
Kids want to have fun and play. They have so much energy and good vibes that they automatically inspire and motivate you too. Parents might often forget that kids need a positive environment to learn new things and develop harmoniously. Make sure you do not create a working atmosphere because this will keep your kid away from learning a new language and the activities you have prepared.
Yes, it is okay and recommended to have a strategy or to be consistent in doing activities with your kids. But do not make them feel like they are obliged to do it, because they will simply stop doing it. Do not put pressure and overwhelm your kids by being harsh and stern. Instead, create a positive environment where your kids feel encouraged and empowered. Choosing colorful and engaging learning materials will help you make this activity bright and fun, as shown by some reports of assignment help.
Sometimes parents are expecting too much from their kids and preparing them for a life full of targets and sense, but children are children. You never know who they will become or what they are keen on, until they try it by themselves, and find their own realisation. This is very important to give your kids space and support to be who they are and to do what they want. We shouldn’t forget like we all were kids and had our own dreams.
Many parents want to raise a multilingual kid, for many diverse reasons. Many studies show the importance of exposing your kid to new things since birth. Their brains have higher plasticity so they can learn new languages faster and easier than adults. Even though it may seem much, children have an innate ability to hear and combine the sounds that make a language, making the learning process more facile. As a parent, you could help and support this process by choosing to do fun activities.
Make sure you choose interesting and colorful videos, books, or flashcards. You can also apply the one parent one language strategy and expose your kid to different languages. But at the same time, make sure you do not push your kids too fast or too far. Do not forget that they are kids and have so much energy and good vibes to engage in new activities, but not in boring ones. Allow your kid to learn at his or her own pace and make sure you offer your support and encouragement.