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Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Subject:||Teaching a child 3 languages when one parent speaks 2 native languages (English and Mandarin) and the other speaks 1 native language (French)|
|Question:||I am from Singapore and I speak both English and Mandarin at a native level. I also speak fluent French and converse in French with my husband who is French. My husband and I would like to teach all three languages, English, Mandarin and French to our soon-to-be born daughter. I have heard about the one-language-per-parent concept. My husband will be tasked with speaking to our daughter in French. In my case, I am the parent who speaks two native languages. Is there a 'best practice' methodology for our case? Does it mean I can speak to my daughter both in English and Mandarin all the time or should I for instance, do alternative weeks in each language?|
|Reply:||It sounds to me an awful lot to put on a little child. It isn't an issue I have ever faced, my wife and I were both English-speakers; but my instinct, I'm sure, would have been to stick to whatever one language it was most natural to speak around the home, and avoid weighing down a tiny tot who has such huge amounts to learn anyway with unnecessary extra burdens. Geoffrey Sampson|
|Reply From:||Geoffrey Richard Sampson click here to access email|