Tuesday, March 21, 2017

bilingual tips!


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Hola! I'm so excited to share more about what we do to help raise our babies bilingual. To be completely honest with you all we've kind of been making it up as we go lol! I am a native Spanish speaker and my parents raised me speaking only Spanish at home.
 I was also really immersed in the language because we attended a Spanish speaking church. A large portion of our friends were also Spanish speaking and that really helped solidify my command of the language even though I was born in the U.S.. Our scenario looked a lot different once Gabriel was born because Benjamin is not a native speaker. He learned the language during, high school, college and for a period of time while living in South America. However, he had a really long period of not speaking it until we met in College so he was very rusty! However, once we decided that our goal was to raise them bilingual we made the extra effort to speak only Spanish in the home.

At this point, both Gabriel and Cristian are fluent in both Spanish and English. We do experience certain situations where they borrow words from both languages. For instance, Gabriel will ask me for milk in English but instead of saying milk he will says leche. Although I only speak to them in Spanish they will often respond to me in both English and Spanish. I was really worried about this at first with Gabriel because I thought he was somehow not learning either of the languages correctly, However, this is very common among bilingual children. They have already learned who speaks Spanish and who speaks English. Eventually, these little hiccups will get sorted out!

I wanted to share 5 easy- tools we currently use to help with the boys with their Spanish language acquisition. Of course, our top tool is to only speak Spanish to them at all times! Even in public :)

1. Originator app: I recently shared an Instastory of Cristian playing this game on his Ipad and I received so many questions about it.We love the app! We've used it since Gabriel was a tot and it's so helpful. It comes in a few languages and your little one can move both the letters and words around to form words and sentences. The letters make their specific sounds and that's how your little one can learn to repeat it. Cristian has gotten so good at this game and I love watching him play it. It's such a great tool to help your child learn both sounds and words.


3.Make a Spanish speaking friend: I know this one might be easier said than done but I recommend calling your local library or community center and ask if they know of any local parent group that meets to speak Spanish to their littles! If they don't have one then maybe start one of your own. I can almost guarantee that you'll find more people that would be interested in joining!

4. Spanish Flash cards: We love these flashcards because they come in triplicate form. It's a great way to get your little to match the letter, picture or word. It's a fun way to play 'memory' in Spanish also!

5. Plaza Sesamo: Sesame Street in Spanish- need I say more?!

 I hope this list is helpful! Do you guys have any favorite bilingual resources?! Let me know in the comments!

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