16 votes

Tips on raising bilingual children

Your first question The best gift you can give your child is for your wife to speak in Russian, and for you to speak in English. I speak by experience. During the first 4 years of my daughter's life,...
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  • 261
14 votes
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Is it too late to teach my 10 year old son English now?

It's never too late to learn a language! And it's especially worthwhile to learn English, seeing that it is the modern world's international language of business and science. I do recommend that you ...
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10 votes
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Is switching between languages and addressing conversation partners in the right language easy for Kids?

An answer from my husband who's a developmental psychologist: Bilingualism does not cause any impairments or delays, although vocabulary may be slower to acquire. It helps if the child is exposed to ...
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9 votes
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Should I not speak spanish with my children and my future wife?

You should never avoid speaking your own language to your child. Especially if it's globally useful language like English or Spanish. In fact it will do your child a huge favour to be raised ...
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8 votes
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Does native Finnish and literacy in another language give literacy in Finnish?

Based on personal experience I would say no. I grew up bilingual swedish and finnish while living in sweden with one finnish speaking parent. While I did speak finnish almost exclusively with on ...
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7 votes
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Is "difficulty" an inherent trait in language?

My linguistics professors at university told me that all languages are roughly equally difficult because children learn their native language at roughly the same speed across the world. Languages that ...
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  • 19.2k
7 votes

Is "difficulty" an inherent trait in language?

Firstly, it does seem that some languages might be inherently more difficult than other languages to learn in the classroom. This is because many languages have large amounts of irregulars, exceptions ...
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6 votes

Is "difficulty" an inherent trait in language?

Yes, there is such a thing as an inherent difficulty of a language. All languages are learnable by children, but it is clear that there are features that require more time to learn, and languages ...
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5 votes

Does native Finnish and literacy in another language give literacy in Finnish?

My answer is based on personal experience of teaching a child to read and write Russian while living in North America. Russian also has a fairly straightforward relationship between pronunciation and ...
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What are the steps to native language acquisition for children?

How Children Learn Language is a book that covers this topic. This is the book's summary: Demonstrating how children learn to produce and distinguish between sounds, and their acquisition of words ...
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5 votes

Tips on raising bilingual children

According to some research and personal experience, I would suggest to use the first option "One adult - one language" for younger children (until the age of 4 or 5). At that stage children do not ...
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4 votes

Tips on raising bilingual children

Send your child (when around 4 years old) for a long summer vacation (full immersion course) in Russia with grandparents. Your 4 year old child will be fluent in Russian in just 3-4 months, so well ...
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4 votes

Is it too late to teach my 10 year old son English now?

| Should he learn it? | Obviously, if you could add a language to your son's linguistic diversity, you should definitely do so. English, particularly, is a very good choice as it is one of the most ...
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3 votes
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When to start encouraging my bilingual child not to mix languages?

Short answer: Now. Long answer: The common approach to teaching bilingual children is "one person - one language". Little kids are confused by contextual language switching (e.g. we speak one ...
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3 votes

Can I learn a language with a child?

Children can easily remember whatever you say them. And the same words they reply when you ask. Practice with children might be an option for vocabulary improvement but not the better practice source. ...
3 votes

Approach to multiple language learning goal for a multilingual family

You should speak German with your children and your wife should speak Korean, as these are your native languages. You should make sure your children pick up some language for use at school - probably ...
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  • 3,311
3 votes

Is switching between languages and addressing conversation partners in the right language easy for Kids?

In the country where I'm from every child is expected to at the very least learn a first language and a second language. Some even learn a third or a fourth language at school. Although we have very ...
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3 votes

How can I best use my time when teaching young EFL learners during a very short class period?

This seems like quite a lofty goal. 40 minutes per week is quite difficult for students who actually have exposure with the language; for those without any experience, it's more than a herculean ...
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  • 425
3 votes

How to enhance the German vocabulary of my six-year-old?

A lot of initial language knowledge is transferred through the parents, especially at an early age. So the more words you know and use, the more your child will learn as well. Get a lexicon for ...
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  • 131
3 votes
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Should a child acquire a language within 12 years of its birth?

The wikipedia article on feral children, that is children who have been raised by animals, might be useful: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feral_child It claims: They often seem mentally impaired ...
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  • 3,311
2 votes

How to enhance the German vocabulary of my six-year-old?

Audio books haven't been mentioned yet. My daughter listens to them as background noise on repeat. She picks up phrases from the dialogues and sometimes she asks about sentences she does not ...
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  • 131
2 votes

How to enhance the German vocabulary of my six-year-old?

You can do your daughter a great service by motivating her to read. In the scientific literature, this is known as extensive reading or reading for pleasure. There is a lot of research evidence on the ...
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2 votes

How can I best use my time when teaching young EFL learners during a very short class period?

When I was living in Japan, I volunteered and taught English class and I had a lot of youth show up. They were mostly teenagers, but the best way they improved their English was giving them the ...
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2 votes
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Effect of trilingualism on babies

A bit googling on "trilingual baby" and "bilingual baby" gives me some good results, of which one of the sites I share here : http://www.trilingualchildren.com/ Will the baby take longer to speak ...
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  • 238
2 votes

Teaching syllables to three and half year old

One of the most effective techniques developed in teaching syllables to Russian children is Zaitsev's tables. The same approach was successfully used in Ukrainian and Kazakh languages. I assume it can ...
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  • 988
2 votes

Does imitation play any role in child language acquisition?

Imitation is an instinctive behaviour found in not only humans but other animals also. An obvious example would be parrots. So, naturally, children will learn languages through imitation of other ...
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2 votes

Fun mobile apps for teaching kids English?

Not a smartphone app, but desktop: When my son was learning English (about 10 years old), I introduced him to computer game Civilization (available for free as "Freeciv" on Linux). There, different ...
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2 votes

How important is IPA to learn pronunciation for learners with non-roman alphabet

My experience with the Perso-Arabic (Arabic and Persian) and Hebrew alphabets tells me that you don't need IPA. Romanization/transliteration in a consistent way is perfectly good. The romanization ...
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