Bilingual is Better

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Moving Our Multilingual Family to South America

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Our little multilingual family has some exciting news! We will be moving to South America (Ecuador) in 2014! This definitely poses new challenges and exciting opportunities as a family who has multilingualism at the center of mostly everything we do (i.e., doctors visits, children’s books). We are already thinking about how our linguistic interactions will change as we establish ourselves in our new home aka the middle of the world. For example, we have considered changing our use of Spanish forRead More ...

The High Five Challenge

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¡Dame cinco! or… ¡Chócala! When we were recording our last session of Habla Blah Blah music in Mexico, some of my previous “translating” errors became glaringly embarrassing causes for continuous chuckling at the studio. I turned to Maria (Sánchez Lozano), one of our female Spanish singers, and I said in my coolest purr, “¡dame cinco!” She, honestly, just looked at me. In perfect English, she said, “What do you mean?” It turns out that “Give me five!” doesn’t translate! TheRead More ...

Will I Ever Stop Being Mama to Become “Mommy”?

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Last week I picked up Enzo at daycare and he ran to me with arms open wide. “Mommy!”  he said. I said no, “Yo soy mama, abuela es mami.” He started to giggle and pointed his finger at me, “no tú mommy.” Only four months into daycare and Enzo’s English is flourishing. At home, sometimes we hear him playing by himself and he is playing en inglés! His Papa swears English has already become his first language. Enzo hears his otherRead More ...

When Bilingual Kids are Misidentified as Special Ed Students

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“They put me in special ed when I started school. They thought I couldn’t learn, but it was because I didn’t speak English.” During a conversation with a friend, he shared with me his experience 30+ years ago in kindergarten. During the first week of school, my friend was taken out of his regular class and placed in a separate, segregated class for students with special needs. As an ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher and a parent ofRead More ...

7 Fantastic Reasons to Raise Bilingual Kids

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Many parents never question the idea of raising bilingual kids. I imagine that, like me, they figure it’s the only way to raise their children. Maybe it’s because they’re bilingual themselves and they know first-hand the benefits of speaking more than one language. Or maybe it’s because it’d be odd for them to speak to their children in a language other than their native one even if it’s considered the minority language — as in my case. But I thinkRead More ...

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