Edit ModuleShow Tags

Eight Myths About Multilingual Kids


Published:

(page 1 of 2)

multilingualPeople are well-meaning, but they often operate from their beliefs rather than the facts. When you talk about raising a multilingual child, you will no doubt hear some of these myths and misconceptions.

“Multilingualism is nice but uncommon.”

False

Estimates suggest that 75 percent of the world’s population speaks more than one language. That means that despite the fact that most western cultures are monolingual, the majority of the world is multilingual. Many children learn one or more regional or tribal language at the same time they learn the official language of the country where they live.

“Learn one language properly first and teach other languages later.”

False

This is not only wrong, but totally counterproductive. After having already learned one language, it takes effort, more interaction, and motivation to learn a second language. Studies have concluded that learning them simultaneously is magnitudes easier for both baby and parents.

“At this age, becoming multilingual is too late.”

False 

Children can always learn another language, at any age—as can adults. Granted, it is easier during the early critical period. But, creating a more stimulating learning environment will jump start your little language student no matter when he starts.

“You will confuse a child by raising it with two or more languages.”

False

This is an old belief prevalent in monolingual countries, and it’s a belief that has almost become political. Rest assured that your child’s little brain has more than enough horsepower to cope with two languages (or more) without affecting the dominant language. This has been proven by decades of research and countless families around the world, including the many bilingual countries where multilingualism is the norm, not the exception: Canada, Belgium, Switzerland, and Finland, just to name a few.

More multilingual myths—>

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

Is a Faith-Based School Right for Your Kid?

Local parents share the reasons they chose religious education for their children.

Here's How Your School Can Recreate Those Awesome Book Cover Hallways That Went Viral

We asked the teacher behind those epic book hallways at Mundelein High School in Chicago how he made them happen.

Head to NYC for A Week of Sea, Air and Space Fun During Kids Week

The Intrepid museum’s weeklong program will teach 'em where to find science in their everyday lives.

NJ Public Middle Schools Will Start Teaching Kids About Financial Responsibility

A new law will require schools to teach sixth through eighth graders everything from budgeting and debt to investing and insurance.

New Year, New Reads: 15 Books to Jumpstart Their Love of Reading in 2019

Add these titles to their reading list in the new year.

Add your comment: