Goals and Literacy For Your Multilingual Child
If you're raising a multilingual child, what proficiency are you expecting? What does he need? Considering the particularities of your own child, you can figure out what is practical. Are you aiming for full literacy skills or merely speaking the languages? Consider setting some goals both for your child and yourself.
Different levels of multilingualism
What is multilingualism? What is fluency? Actually, no clear-cut definition exists, only degrees of proficiency from rudimentary to native skills. Many parents don't have explicit goals, but here are some examples:
* 'I want another language for my sons so they will be one step ahead in school.'
* 'We want to share the culture and heritage of our native country with our kids.'
* 'We'd like her to be able to play and talk to her cousins and Grandma when they visit.'
* 'Spanish is necessary if you're going to live in the USA, and the children may as well learn it now.'
* 'The best job opportunities are always for those who have can both speak and write in both languages.'
* 'We hope for her to be able to read and write in two of the three languages, but we'll see what happens.'"
The article goes on to discuss:
- what is fluency
- moving from verbal skills to literacy
- and tips for developing literacy