Review: Bilingual Siblings by Suzanne Barron-Hauwaert

bilingual siblingsWhen we had our our first child, as many other bilingual families we wondered how she would take to learning two languages. There is a lot of planning and work in raising successful bilingual children, thing are not that simple, as they are many different factors to consider. After the first child come the second, and for some families a few more. How does the language balance inside the family change with several children, is it easier to maintain the minority language given that there are more potential speakers in the family, or is it even more difficult because children bring in from the school the majority language? [Read more...]

Growing numbers of bilingual families in Australia

talk-bubble-856552-mWhen I read about the growing numbers of bilingual families in Australia, I immediately recognise the same social pattern here in the UK, as well as in most European countries. This situation raises several questions, should the families push their children to learn mainly the local language so they can integrate better in their new society? Should they push them to speak mainly the minority language so they can maintain the link with their roots? How does learning two language influence their cognitive abilities? And many more, although, for me, having worked in a special needs department in a secondary school, it was perhaps this one which stood out the most: how can we assess language impairment in a bilingual child? [Read more...]