“Bilingualism is an ability to speak two languages, the ability to communicate by means of the first one and also the second one”.
Prucha, Dictionary of Education
Multilingual's Children Association
Waltham Forest Bilingual Group
Raising Bilingual Children - Facebook Group
Netmums Coffee House - Parents from other countries
An intersting article about bilingualism
Bilingualism does not mean only the ability to speak perfectly in more than one language, it also means the ability to absorb a different culture, traditions and customs, and to identify oneself with another nation through a language. In this context, the concept of bilingualism is paramount for Czechs living abroad, not only from the point of view of integration into a foreign society, but much more in safeguarding and transferring their own identity.
The natural bilingualism, or the fact, that the child learns both languages at the same time (simultaneously) from his parents and acquires, in fact, two native languages, is a determining factor for development of bicultural society.
Bilingual upbringing today is promoted throughout the world for the reason that research studies have shown, that children, who had it, are overall better linguistically equipped than children, who grow up in monolingual families. Some of the many advantages of bilingual children are:
The child has the best ability to master the language, in both the structural, and acoustic way, starting straight from birth until 8-12 years of age. This period cannot be, in view of the linguistic ability, repeated. In this context, the best and most effective for the child, is natural bilingualism, the natural bilingual environment.
At the same time bilingual upbringing requires following certain rules.
The most basic are:
Experiences of families bringing up their children bilingually can be found here.
L’Enfant aux deux langues, C. Hagège, Odile Jacob, 1996, 2005