Top 10 Myths About Bilingualism
A: Bilingualism refers to an individual or groups of people who acquire communication skills in more than one language.
A: Parents sometimes worry that mixing languages is a sign of language delay or confusion. As a matter of fact, it is a natural part of bilingualism and often seen as a sign of bilingual proficiency.
A: There is no need to wait until your child is fluent with one language before introducing another.
- Do what feels comfortable for you and your family. Don’t try to speak a language with your child if you are not comfortable or fluent in that language.
- Don’t worry if your child mixes the languages. This is a normal part of becoming trilingual. Provide your child with many opportunities to hear, speak, play, and interact in your home language.
A: Children learn from a very young age to tell the difference between languages. Mixing language is common for bilingual children and they do not get confused by it.
A: Some parents may choose to adopt the ‘one parent one language’ approach, where each parent only speaks one language to the child. While this is one way of raising bilingual children, it may not be the best strategy.
A: Bilingualism itself does not cause language delay. Bilingual children may say their first words slightly later than monolingual children, but it is still within the normal age range.
A: You can introduce a second language anytime you want. As long as they have enough exposure to the language they are learning, children can learn more than one language at the same time.
A: There is no evidence that using a second language at home is essential for a child to learn a second language. Furthermore, any interactions and conversations would become very unnatural and uncomfortable between parent and the child, as well as to other family members.
A: Many children with language delay are raised in bilingual households and environments. Research has shown that bilingualism is possible for children with language delay.