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Early Bilingualism and Multilingualism

Parents’ and Caregivers’ Attitudes and Observations

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Zofia Chłopek

The author investigates the development of children raised bilingually or multilingually. Parents and caregivers completed a questionnaire, providing information on 36 children growing up with two or more languages. Their responses indicate that bilingual and multilingual children usually develop as well as their monolingual peers, and sometimes even better. Some drawbacks of early bilingualism or multilingualism, such as a slight delay in the onset of speech production or asymmetrical language competences, are compensated for by several benefits of early acquisition of two or more mother tongues and early contacts with two or more cultures.

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References

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Abdelilah-Bauer, Barbara (2008). Zweisprachig aufwachsen: Herausforderung und Chance für Kinder, Eltern und Erzieher. München: Verlag C.H. Beck.

Abudarham, Samuel (1997). The tenability of comparing the receptive lexical proficiency of dual language children with standardised monoglot norms. Educational Studies 23: 127–143.

Abunuwara, Ehab (1992). The structure of the trilingual lexicon. European Journal of Cognitive Psychology 4 (4): 311–322.

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