There is a widespread belief that the child can grow “true bilingual” only if at least one of the parents is carrier of a foreign language or you want to send him to study abroad for big money.
Professor and renowned expert on multilingualism of the University of Temple University (USA) Aneta Pavlenko, said that the child is quite able to become the bearer of two languages, e.g. English and Russian at home, even if mom and dad speak English as a foreign language.
Today for bilingual children, nanny from abroad is no longer needed
“This view of life is very outdated. A hundred years ago, a nanny from abroad could be your only opportunity to raise a child bilingual. Today, thanks to new technologies, parents have access to authentic language resources (songs, cartoons, movies, TV shows, games, and so on).
You just need to stop worrying about the fact that the child may not have the pronunciation as a native speaker and more concerned about the fact that he got enough language resources”, — says the Professor.
To grow up bilingual was possible even in the Soviet Union
According to Aneta Pavlenko, all this is confirmed by research and her own experience. “I grew up in the Soviet Union. My mother was a teacher of English. She began to teach me English when I was 6 years old, but soon realized that I was not interested in doing a textbook. So she began to talk with other people in my presence and to use English as our “secret language.” That’s when I started speaking English. Then I started to read in this language and knowledge of the language gave me access to books, translations of which on Russian it was not simple. I was very interested,” — says the expert.
When Aneta Pavlenko in adulthood moved to the US, she already had enough knowledge to immediately go to work or study at the University. Moreover, the Professor then used the tactics of “secret language” in order to teach your child Russian.
Parents who want to raise bilingual children, for the record
According to Aneta Pavlenko parents should remember that:
- Language should never be implanted. Children growing up in the environment where the language was propagated, you may experience rejection.
- The use of language should not be artificial. Fortunately, modern technology has given full access to the authentic linguistic resources.
- Language — dinechin. Our knowledge of languages change constantly throughout our lives. If today mom and dad will lay the foundations of knowledge of a language, the baby will be able in the future to use this as a launching pad.
- More important than anything, to instill in your child a love of language and motivation to study.