When raising multilingual children, building a support network can be a really positive and empowering endeavor. You will find that there are some things that your monolingual peers may not understand quite as well as your multilingual peers.
Just like a network of parents can help you with the challenges, it can also be really fun and rewarding to share stories to others who get it! A multilingual parent will know exactly how excited you may feel when your child learns to say a word in two languages, or when they start translating, or when they turn to one parent and speak in one language and turn to the other and speak in the other. They will be there to cheer you up during the hard times but they will also be there to celebrate with you when your child achieves a milestone!
I am thrilled to be hosting this month’s Raising Multilingual Children Blogging Carnival! This month bloggers around the world are sharing how they have built a tribe that supports them on their language journey!
- Maria from Trilingual Mama describes how creating traditions with her own family has helped build her own support network for language learning and helped her children achieve their language goals.
- Maria also shares how linguistically beneficial it has been for her kids to have other family friends supporting the same target language.
- The insightful Adam Beck from Bilingual Monkeys has a wonderful post on how to handle lack of support on your bilingual journey from people around you. He shares his personal struggle and encourages readers to share theirs as well so don’t miss the comment section.
- Leanne from Frenglish Learning has advice for families supporting French in the home to create a support network and add exposure to the language including: summer day camps, language courses, online classes, play dates & social gatherings, extended family, the local library and social media support.
- Frances from Discovery the World Through My Son’s Eyes, writes about how it has taken a village to raise her multilingual son. She details all the different ways in which she has gone out of her way to create exposure to Spanish and a need to use the language.
- Leanna shares the benefits of having grandparents help on the multilingual journey yet is also honest about some of the difficulties that come with having a bilingual grandchild. She shares plenty of solutions on how to overcome these obstacles.
- Rita also discusses the important role that grandparents can play to teach their grandchildren about their heritage and family history in addition to supporting the language journey.
- If you are having a hard time finding playmates that also speak the target language, you may find Galina’s post particularly helpful! She is helping families around the world find playmates.
- Cordelia from Multilingual Mama presents six tips she has leveraged to find a linguistic tribe. I love #3: Register with your embassy and attend any independence day or other celebrations. We’ll certainly try this out when we head back to Washington DC.
- Natasha from Russian Step by Step for Children describes how she would not have considered raising bilingual children if she did not have the people and resources around her to make her children’s Russian language journey possible.
- Orana from Crazy Little Family Adventure describes how she has established a support network for her children’s heritage languages in Bali at home, at school, online and her plans for the future.
- Diana from LadydeeLG provides 13 different tips on how YOU can raise your multilingual support tribe! I am a big fan of all her tips and think the second to last one is particularly fitting for this post: Follow and engage with bloggers who write about raising bilingual kids.
- Jaclyn from Bringing Up the Parks describes how she established a multilingual environment for her family from the start including the role family and friends have played along the way.
- Eolia from La Cite des Vents writes about how she has managed to establish a support network wherever she goes!
- To wrap up I’ll share a podcast of my own where I described the value I personally see in making the effort to build a network with other multilingual parents so that you can stay committed to your goals.
How about you, have you been able to build a multilingual tribe to help you along the way? If not, what has been your greatest setback? If you have written anything relevant on the subject, feel free to link your article in the comments!