It so happened that our family is bilingual. My husband’s native language is English, and I have Russian. Therefore, even before the appearance of the baby, we began to think about the language in which he would communicate with us.
Surrounding people expressed different opinions, from the optimistic. How lucky your future son is to have such language baggage at once! To gloomy. There is nothing good in this, the child will get confused and will not want to talk at all !.
Russian is the main language. What about English?
With the fact that the main language for the baby will be Russian, we decided immediately. At the moment we live in Russia and in the future we are not going to go anywhere. Here the child will communicate with Russian relatives, here he will go to kindergarten and to school, here he is surrounded by reality in Russian.
But we assume that English will also play a big role in his life. Therefore, we want the son to master both languages equally well. And although he is only three months old, we hold the opinion: the sooner to put him in a bilingual environment, the better.
Is it too early?
Personally, I am against the early learning of foreign languages, when 2-3 years old children are forced to cram foreign words. But, firstly, we introduce English into the life of our son in a natural way, and, secondly, we do it not for fun, but with concrete practical goals.
Knowing the language will make it easier for the son to communicate with relatives on the father’s line. It will help him to feel comfortable if we get together with a visit to her husband’s homeland. As a bonus, you can highlight that if later the son has a desire to learn some other foreign languages, he will much easier.
For my part, the main argument was that the Russian husband was not yet sufficiently mastered, so I did not want the kid to adopt his accent and not always the correct grammar.
We did not specifically develop the teaching methodology; everything turned out somehow by itself. Yes, and learning in the full sense of the word can not be called, because the development of languages will occur in everyday communication from parents. And we decided to start right away, almost from birth, highlighting 3 main points:
Communication: each in his own language
Although I speak English from seven or eight years old, I will never get rid of the Russian accent completely. My husband began to learn our language a couple of years ago, and his Russian is still very far from ideal.
Accordingly, we considered it logical that each of us will speak with the baby in his own language. So he will learn correct pronunciation, grammar and extensive vocabulary from a native speaker from the cradle. We are already actively implementing this principle, constantly talking with the crumb and humming him children’s songs.
Most of the time the son will be in the Russian-speaking environment. Therefore, we decided that the husband would also give him time reading books in English.
Accordingly, we have already stocked up children’s books in English: from soft teething books for teeth to various children’s collections.
Cartoons and movies
With this, of course, we are not in a hurry. But they decided to prepare now. There is no way to assimilate language without cultural realities, therefore, in addition to Russian cartoons, the kid will also watch cartoons and children’s films loved by his father from a young age. My husband was already happy to do a selection of DVD.
Waiting for results
Of course, it is still too early to talk about the results now and in the near future. For the time being, we are only listening with interest to the international aga of our son and are looking forward to what language he will say the first word.
There are also plans to study other languages when the son grows up. A husband, for example, dreams of learning German and one of the Scandinavian languages. Of course, if the child has the desire. We are not going to make him, since growing a polyglot is not our goal.