Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Book Review- Raising Bilingual Children: A Practical Guide

A coule of weeks ago, I shared with you a review of Maritere Rondriguez Bellas' book, Arroz con pollo and Apple Pie - Raising Bicultural Children.

Today, I 'm reviewing her other excellent book, Raising Bilingual Children: A Practical Guide (aff link). It is an easy guidebook for parents who are committed to raising bilingual kids. Divided up into six chapters, the book starts with how to get started and ends with suggestions for non-native language speakers. You'll read about how after-school language learning programs get creative and the pros and cons of immersion schools. And you can read five case studies of children who move from school into the world.

It covers common questions parents have, such as what to do when your child refuses to speak Spanish at home, how to proceed when one parent doesn't speak the target language, and should you be concerned if your 2 year old isn't speaking in either language.

There is practical advice for busy parents, as well as testimonies from real parents who have successfully raised bilingual kids. I love that I can read about parents who have been there and done that, so they know what I'm going through. And you can even read interviews with some of their bilingual children.

In addition, Mari has included articles and advice from the experts, too, such as Delfin Carbonell Bassett, PhD, who debunks the five most prevalent myths associated with raising bilingual kids. Have you heard that a bilingual kid's brain will get confused with so many different words in different languages? That they'll get confused and suffer language delays? Maybe you've heard that a child must start learning a second language from birth or they'll be unsuccessful. Learn the truth to these and other misconceptions in chapter one.

I think you'll also enjoy the 100+ tips you'll find scattered throughout the book. You could even make it a daily goal to write one on a dry-erase board and post it somewhere you and your family will see it to boost your commitment.

While this book emphasizes immigrant parents, I love that the last chapter is for monolingual parents who are raising bilingual children. What a selfless act those parents are making and how awesome is it to have a resource to help them in their commitment!

Overall, this book is a must-have for every bilingual family's home library. Or if you know a family that fits this description or a couple expecting their first child, then this would be an excellent gift!


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