Hearing management

Posted by: Col | 2011/01/28


Teaching a baby / child two languages

Hi - when teaching a baby (10 months old) / child two languages e.g. French and English, would it be better for the Mom to communicate with the baby in the one language only and the Dad in the other language only OR should they both use both languages? And when teaching a word should they repeat the word e.g. bird in French and English at the same time to avoid confusion or would this cause confusion? Thank-you :-)

Expert's Reply


Hearing Expert

HI Col

The language experts suggest that a baby receive a firm foundation in one language first to ensure understanding before a second language is introduced. The mother tongue (language) is usually the language that the mother communicats with the baby and is then the foundation language. It is possible to communicate with a baby in two languages but the risk here is that the baby develope language confusion and is not able to first form a concrete language foundation on which he/she can refer to when learning a second language. This can also have an effect later on in schooling and the learning process and lead to learning impairments.
If two languages have to be spoken it will be better for each parent to stick to the same language and not interchange - but this is not advisable.


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