Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Foreign Language Exposure

We posted a short piece on ourMontessori Mandarin blog regarding bilingual experiences and infants.

The article discusses the usefulness of bilingual exposure in developing and broadening a child's language capabilities.

In the classroom, we try to present basic foreign language material for very young children. For example, try counting in a foreign language, singing a familiar and easy-to-follow children's song or phrase (e.g., good morning, good morning, good Chinese, Spanish, or whatever language you speak).

If you do not feel your language skills are up to par, find someone to spend 30 minutes several times a week, if possible. Some parents put together a small play group and find a Spanish-speaker (in areas where it is easy to find Spanish speakers) at a local college or among the group of parents. You can also find some success in looking for foreign parents who would like a language exchange group -- we have successfully paired Mandarin speaking parents working overseas with English speaking parents, for example.

The language exposure can be super simple. The idea is to introduce your child's brain to the sounds and cadences of another language at this key point in his or her life.

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