San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 05/15/2013 -- Parents in the United States are beginning to realize how important it is to raise their children with a global education. A second language is the best head start you can give your child.
The number of U.S. residents age four and older who speak a language other than English at home has more than doubled in the past three decades. Parents Tom and Claudine RipertCopper are prime examples, having taught their children French from birth. "I wanted them to be able to communicate with their family in France. Many aunts and uncles are from an older generation and don't speak English. That would mean that my children would lose out on a lot of history and knowledge," said RiperCooper.
When a new parent are in the troughs of raising kids especially more than one, it may be hard enough to get them through naps, making sure they are eating well, and recalibrating the "normal" household routines. Introducing another language may seem like something that would bring you right over the edge. But this in fact is the perfect time to introduce your child to a foreign language, is when they're learning their first one. A young child's brain is wired to pick up language naturally and being bilingual actually builds brainpower. Between birth and 12 years of age, children can learn multiple languages and pronunciation easily.
Studies have found that knowing another language can improve children's English verbal skills, problemsolving abilities, and test scores. "When kids learn that there is more than one way to describe something (maman, mom, mama) they develop a greater associative thinking pathflexibility in thinking," says Claudine RipertCopper, the VP of Raising Kids French, a leading expert on bilingual education and raising kids the French way. She hosts a website and blog based in San Francisco Bay area that provides resources and the how to's of second language learning.
Here are some of her suggestions - on how to start raising bilingual kids.
Allonsy - let's jump in!!
One of the best ways to introduce a child to a foreign language is through immersion / exposure no English translation. There seems to be some degree of concern about confusing a pretalker by introducing foreign words at the same time as she's learning to speak her primary language.
"When my kids were learning English and Spanish they could just knew what words belonged to which parent. It's innate." says Maria Santos, mother of two children that are growing up in a dual English and Spanish household. Many cities have language clubs or associations where you can gain access to native speakers and potential babysitters. Also foreign exchange students are wonderful as are Au Pairs.
In the car/on the way to school: 10 minutes a day is really all it takes to acquire a language. If you are persistent and pop in the cd regularly the repetition is absorbed effortlessly when children are exposed at an early age. Try a cd that is both spoken and sung. Friends in France - French sing alongs (NBITA Productions available : Amazon.com) $9.95, a low cost, effective way of teaching kids. It is especially helpful hearing the pronunciation of the complete phrases because it is spoken first with time to repeat and sing.
Memory: Parents can teach their child everyday words, numbers, colors, and animals by playing an already purchased game and writing the words on the cards. This way the entire family can practice.
Dual Language books: A visit to your local library for popular children's books in other languages. There are also new titles that sprinkle non-English words into their stories.
Give these a try:
CloClo Poodle and Oodles of fun - Series of books (Chloe and Claudine Copper, available on
Smashwords, a rigolo intro to a basic French words while exposing you and your child to some fun cultural spins.
At the Beach, by HuyVoun Lee ($8), about a mother who teaches her son Chinese characters by drawing them in the sand.
If you've ever thought about raising your kid to be multilingual, now's the perfect time to start. It only takes 10 minutes a day.Have Fun it's definitely time well spent!
If you'd like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview with Claudine Ripert Copper please call 9255773639 or email Claudine at firstname.lastname@example.org
About Claudine Ripert
Claudine Ripert is an expert in teaching languages, specializing in books that helps children learn different languages at an especially young age!