In today’s increasingly globalized world, many parents want their children to learn English and grow up bilingually. Making a child bilingual also depends on whether the parent speaks or does not speak a foreign language. Here are some tips and tricks for making your child bilingual in both cases.
If parents can’t speak English
Don’t try to teach them English
If you want to make your child bilingual, you just feel like your parents have to teach your child English. But don’t try to teach your child English if your parents realize they can’t speak English.
First of all, Japanese and English have different pronunciations. Therefore, if a parent who cannot speak English tries to teach a child English, the child will learn English with Japanese pronunciation. However, there are many sounds in English that are not in Japanese. So, the more parents try to teach English, the more likely the child will learn English with Japanese pronunciation.
Try to have them listen to proper pronunciation
So how do you teach English? First of all, there is no better way to use a child’s language proficiency because it is so powerful. To that end, it is important to listen to music in English from a young age and show anime in English.
You may be worried because you don’t understand the meaning of watching anime in English. However, if the child has not mastered the language, showing it in Japanese or English will not change. I usually live in Japanese, so even if I don’t show one anime in Japanese, I can learn Japanese properly. Wouldn’t it be better to show it in English?
Choose good teachers
Many parents send their children to an English conversation classroom from a young age to make them bilingual. However, if you choose an English classroom, choose a place with a teacher who speaks English well.
You may think that it is good for children to be able to study English happily, and that there are many games. However, in extreme cases, it is possible to open a children’s English classroom without speaking English. You don’t have to be a native speaker, but let your teacher speak English as much as possible and speak beautifully.
If parents can speak English
Don’t mix languages
If a parent speaks English, but they speak a mixture of Japanese and English, and sometimes speak Japanese, sometimes English, the child will not be bilingual. Rather, they can learn Japanese and English halfway and become semi-lingual without native language.
The official languages of Singapore are Chinese, English, Malay, and Tamil. My Singaporean friend speaks Chinese and English, but learned both languages from an early age. However, when I heard the story, they learned both of them halfway, so they said that neither was perfect, that there was a problem with either, and that if they were in trouble, they would use the other language.
If you teach English and Japanese halfway, neither of them can be perfect.
Distinguish the languages clearly
To prevent such semi-linguals, it is important to sharpen them. For example, when you go outside, you can distinguish between English and Japanese at home, so that your child will surely learn both languages.
My husband is from Europe, but has two native languages, German and Dutch. Two native languages! Surprisingly, he grew up in Germany with Dutch-speaking parents. So I grew up listening to Dutch from my parents and listening to German when I went out. Therefore, I have two languages as my native language, and there is no inconvenience for both.
By teaching languages in this way, children can learn many languages.
Make them listen to languages since they are kids
Babies do understand the languages
When a child is born, some parents may be wondering when to start teaching a foreign language. Anyway, if you want to teach a foreign language, you want to use your child’s ability to learn a foreign language.
If so, let the baby speak a foreign language. There’s nothing wrong with talking to a baby because he doesn’t understand the language. Sure, no matter what words you say, your baby cannot understand, but your baby’s brain is developing every day. In other words, the baby is absorbing language every day.
In fact, it is said that the lower child who listens to the interaction between the upper child and the parent speaks faster. In the case of the upper child, she often stays at home alone with her mother and is in a quiet environment, so she speaks slower than the lower child.
Have them used to good words
Also, if your baby is at home, people around you should try to be beautiful. If the parent speaks a dialect, the child will also learn the dialect. Similarly, if the parent uses rough language, the child will learn the rough language.
So, even if you think that your baby doesn’t understand the words, try to be clear and polite when speaking in front of the child.
It’s important to go to other countries, too!!
If you want to be bilingual for kids, be sure to go abroad and travel aggressively. You can send your children to study abroad or homestay.
After all, if you learn a language, it is important to go that much and touch the culture of the country. I want to not only learn the language, but also acquire the sense of being an international person.