- For Teachers
I have a nine-month old son, and I would like he could learn English from the very beginning. Since my pregnancy I've been singing and telling him tales in English, but apart from that I always speak to him in Catalan, my mother language. I've been reading about the subject and I feel what I'm doing is not enough, so I'm thinking about the possibility of using only and always English with him from now on. Will this decision mean problems in his normal development (now, after nine months)? I need advice.
Generally speaking, teaching a small child a language that isn't the native language of either parent is a bad idea. Unless if your pronunciation is almost flawless and your grammar and syntax equally excellent, your child will just learn a "learner's" variation of English, not real English. Plus, not using your native language is definately a bad idea.
My advice: Let things flow naturally, allow your child to get used to your native language. Then, at the age of, say, 5 or 6, a child can start learning a second language.
Of course, that doesn't mean that you can't expose him to english cartoons or fairy tales. But better avoid replacing Catalan with English at this stage