This is the old outdated version of "Bilingual Upbringing of Children in the Home", please go to the new version! E6

Why a Bilingual Upbringing

Both my wife, Karola, and I come from purely monolingual German-speaking families, i.e. no family links to other non-German-speaking relatives. So, lots of people will and did ask, why do you do it?

There are lots of good reasons for doing so:

What also helped me to drive away doubts were the words of Henriette Vent (1957) which I had found in the book "Bilingual Children: From Birth to Teens" by George Saunders:
Even if children do not learn all the German words and even if their speech may sometimes be halting, it is, in my opinion, far better to teach them to know and speak some German than to drop it altogether for fear of achieving mediocre results. I do not think that in bringing up normally intelligent children bilingually, there is any danger that their English will suffer and turn into a hodgepodge. Their schooling, as well as the fact that most of their day is spent speaking English outside the home should prevent that.
I just have to exchange German and English in the above text and it perfectly reflects my thinking.

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last update: Sep 15, 2002