There is a sensitive period for learning a 2nd language. The sensitive period is between age 2- 6. The sensitive period is a phase in which the child learns language effortlessly. If there is a two language household and one adult always speaks to the child in one language and the other adult always speaks to the child in another language the child will naturally pick up both languages.
One concern I have with American Education is waiting until well after the sensitive period in order to teach another language. Do you fluently speak the language course you were required to take in High School? If not, it isn’t all your fault you took it at the worse possible time in your learning phase. One of my dear friends had a baby sitter who only spoke Hindi her daughter picked up on Hindi at an early age while still acquiring English. My friend’s daughter was in her sensitive period for learning language. We must not wait until High School in order to teach our children a 2nd or 3rd language. They must be taught the language also offered opportunities to speak (practice) therefore reinforcing the language. With learning a 2nd language there can be the case of if you don’t use it you loose it.
I live in a country that has over 150 nationalities. Most of the people here speak between 2-5 languages. As an adult, I find it challenging to learn a 2nd language. If you live in a bilingual household you are at an extreme advantage allow your child the opportunity to learn two language without paying for lessons while he/she is still in the sensitive stage. I am a second language educator. The most common question I get is “How do you teach a second language if you don’t speak the native language?”. The program I am involved with allows for the students to have two teachers one who speaks the child’s native tongue the other speaks English. The program is also designed to start at age 3. I know all too well the value of speaking more than one language. Too add to that, I recently visited France. While I enjoyed my trip to France tremendously it could have been better if only I spoke the native language.
My appeal to you please take advantage of the sensitive period. They grow up fast.
Thanks for Reading,