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Bilingual Parenting

The Do’s and Don’ts of Raising Bilingual Kids

The Do's & Don'ts Of Raising Bilingual Kids

The Do’s and Don’ts of Raising Bilingual Kids

As parents raising bilingual kids, we have one of the toughest but most rewarding jobs in the world. Yes, it can be stressful at times, making sure our children get enough exposure to all of their languages. But, the benefits of bilingualism outweigh any of the difficulties we may face along the way. Here are 13 do’s and don’ts for parents raising bilingual kids:

DO speak your native language with your kids.

DON’T be afraid to teach your kids your second language, even if you don’t speak it perfectly.

Opol Method, One Person One Language   MLAH Minority Language At Home Language Strategy Bilingual Kids  Raising Bilingual Kids as a Non Native Speaker

DO introduce new languages to your kids as early as possible.

DON’T think it is too late to introduce a new language later on.

Bilingual Babies - Why we should introduce languages early  Introducing your second language to your toddler   Raising bilingual kids, the window of opportunity


Do set realistic goals for your bilingual kids.

Don’t compare your bilingual child to children who only speak one language.

Bilingual children and language development. Expert advice from a speech therapist   Easy Ways to nurture your childs language development   Speech and language developmental milestones for kids

Do be consistent with the language strategy you follow.

Don’t hesitate to change your approach if it isn’t working for your family.

How to raise a bilingual child - choose your method   Moving abroad - changing the community language

Do correct your child if they say something incorrectly, or in the “wrong language”.

Don’t feel like you have to stop them every sentence, stopping the flow of conversation.

Mistakes Parents Make Raising Bilingual Children

Do take advantage of media and technology to help your kids get more exposure to the minority language.

Don’t think that TV or media alone will teach your child a language.

Using screen time advantage bilingual children kids

10 things you need to raise a bilingual child

Do read to your kids every day, especially in the minority language.

Don’t stop reading to them once they can read themselves.

Ways to teach your child to love reading

Bedtime stories - why we should read them every night

Personalized books for kids - lost my name

Do buy resources and materials that can help improve their language skills.

Don’t underestimate the power of conversation for bilingual kids.

Teach kids languages - resources  Power conversation in language development young children

Do your research on Bilingual Parenting and ask advice when you feel you need it.

Don’t listen to the myths and misconceptions about raising bilingual kids.

Myths and misconceptions about raising bilingual kids

Do travel with your children to immerse them in their minority language.

Don’t think you can’t teach kids about the world from home.

Multilingual travel lesson - leading by example

Do try to establish the minority language with your children if possible.

Don’t panic if they have a mind of their own and want to speak the majority language together, it will more than likely be the case.

Bilingual Siblings - Factors that determine their language preference

Boost the minority language for bilingual kids

Creating the need for the minority language

Do make learning a language as fun as possible.

Don’t push your child if you think they are stressed out, they may refuse to speak in any language.

How to make language learning fun for kids

Balanced bilingualism - is it possible and does it matter

Do seek outside support if you need it.

Don’t think you are a failure if your child refuses to speak your language

Language learning is never wasted on kids

Why Your Child Won't Speak Your Language - Tips to Encourage Them

These are some of my do’s and don’ts of raising bilingual kids, and some helpful articles that go into more detail on each topic. I hope they can help you on your bilingual journey.

Are you raising a bilingual child? Take a look at our Multilingual Families Series, or our Language ResourcesSubscribe for related articles. Follow Bilingual KidSpot on Facebook and join our online community and support group.

Do's and don'ts of raising bilingual kids




  1. Kinga

    We were already raising our kids bilingual (English and Polish) ad when we decided to go trilingual, we heard A LOT of objection (that it will “impair their speech”, “confuse them” etc). But after only ONE YEAR of Chinese kindergarten, look what happened: So all I can say is don’t be discouraged, persevere, and believe in your child 🙂

  2. This was such an excellent summary that applies to numerous languages!! Each of the points are so true. I think my favorite two are “Do read to your kids every day, especially in the minority language.” and “Don’t push your child if you think they are stressed out, they may refuse to speak in any language.” It’s so important to read but also have balance!! I am excited to share this helpful post on my Facebook page!

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