Family Language Learning: Learn Another Language, Raise Bilingual Children by Christine Jernigan is a practical guide to raising children with two languages. Specifically, the book addresses non-native speakers of a language teaching it to their children. Native speakers will also find useful information on how to pass on a minority language.
This book covers a wide range of practical concerns about raising bilingual children. It addresses questions families have as they begin the process. It also helps them negotiate the inevitable challenges. On topics from choosing a teaching method to travel, the strategies first anchor parents and then help them move forward.
Resource for Raising Bilingual Children
Family Language Learning: Learn Another Language, Raise Bilingual Children:
- Is well organized, making information easy to find. This is important because parents will turn to the book again and again.
- Draws on the experiences of many families. In addition to her own perspective, the author includes many quotes from other parents. Their words provide valuable insight into the delights and challenges of raising bilingual children.
- Is based on language learning research and includes a complete list of references
- Presents a consistent, effective approach. For example, the suggestion to use puppets in Chapter 7 Talk, Talk Talk: Strategies for When to Talk and What to Talk About fits the motivating factors of storytelling, creativity, attention and play mentioned in Chapter 6.
- Ties learning to family relationships, tapping into humor, play and a passion for language.
- Incorporates an understanding of language acquisition into all the suggestions. From motivation to considering the daily schedule, the activities and strategies structure effective language learning.
- Has specific suggestions for how parents can improve their language skills using a variety of resources.
- Offers practical advice on how to expose kids to the target language.
- Includes excellent information on getting kids to stay in the target language. These practical strategies would be helpful to many native speakers as well.
- Is inspiring. The book demonstrates to parents that raising bilingual children is worthwhile and entirely possible.
Raising bilingual children is a complex task, but one that is rewarded in countless ways. Family Language Learning: Learn Another Language, Raise Bilingual Children helps parents negotiate the difficulties and experience the joy of learning language with their kids.
Christine Jernigan holds a Ph.D. in foreign language education. Her own children speak English and Portuguese. Visit Amazon to purchase Family Language Learning: Learn Another Language, Raise Bilingual Children.
Disclosure: The company sent me a copy of this product to be able to write the article. I may have been compensated for my time. All of the ideas and opinions are my own.