Bilingual Kids Rock with Olena Centeno

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On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I interview fellow podcaster and multilingual mother, Olena Centeno about her language journey and the work she does to support bilingual families worldwide.


Olena is the creator of Bilingual Kids Rock and fellow podcast host!  She is from the Ukraine and lives in Wisconsin with her husband and four multilingual children!

The Breakdown

In this episode Olena shares tells us about:

  • Her language and family’s cultural and linguistic background;
  • What led her to research the topic of raising bilingual children;
  • How languages are managed in her home including Russian, Ukrainian and English;
  • How her family shifted their language policy;
  • How she manages to keep her children engaged in their home languages;
  • The podcast Bilingual Kids Rock;
  • How she structures play dates to maximize exposure to Russian;
  • Some wonderful language strategies including:
    • Finger Puppets
    • Parallel Talk
  • Her advice to listen and observe older children so that they feel supported;
  • Other specific strategies for working with older children including:
    • When you were a baby…
    • Guess the Animal
  • Her language goals for her family and the language journal she used to craft her goals;
  • Her advice to strive to be happy on your language journey.  Don’t stress out because your kids will pick up on it and it will impact their relationship with the language.  The relationship with our children is the priority!


Bilingual Kids Rock

The Bilingual Journal


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