Learning a new language as a family can be a wonderful and rewarding thing to do, especially if you have small children at home. For them, learning at smaller ages will be much easier than learning later in life. It will also be more rewarding for you, as a family to be able to have that extra cultural exposure that another language makes available to you. Most children will grow up learning both languages naturally, at the same time if they are used constantly near him. However, if you want to speed up the process or make it more effective, there are several techniques that you can try out.
For example, there are many online programs that can assist you with learning a new language for yourself as well as making the process fun through the use of games for the entire family. In addition to the ability or need to memorize words, you will find that these online programs will actually teach you to analyze and choose the correct words in the first place. This is done through the use of flash cards, matching games, word scrambles, and tons of other games that make the learning process seem much less like learning and much more like fun.
If you are having fun learning something, chances are that your children will wish to learn as well. Keep reminding them how fun it will be to travel to the land of the language and speak like a native or go out to dinner in a new town and pretend to be foreign by only speaking to each other in the language you've learned. Not to mention the fun they will have on the school bus when no one else really understands what they are saying.
Raising a bilingual family in today's world has many benefits that go far beyond knowing a second language. In addition to the languages learned you are increasing their ability to learn more languages, as each subsequent language is easier to learn. While at a young age, children may have a tendency to mix languages or switch back and forth that is something that will occur less frequently in time.
The process of creating a bilingual household also requires a considerable amount more effort on the part of the parents. Not only are you learning a new language and committing to learning it well enough to teach to your children and speak on a regular basis, but you are also committing your child to another language as well. This can be confusing to him or her at times and overwhelming at others. Be careful that you don't overload them, which may cause them to stop speaking all together and that you are patient with them offering support and kind words when needed. This is one of the greatest gifts you can give your children and they will understand that in time.
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