Back when I was teaching the young ones, I tried to read books with more than one language. I liked to read, out loud, in Spanish and the kids loved to hear languages that weren’t the ones they used most often. Those unfamiliar words seemed to travel into their brains and absorb or create little synaptic pathways; and because the word is so new and interesting, the child has to mouth it: You say sun or sol. They repeat. You say arbol or tree. They repeat.
When I teach reading to my students at a Community College in California I tell them:
So why not apply that principle to reading to children? Why not apply it to reading in two languages? It just makes sense. And now, even if you don’t know the words, you could just Google the pronunciation. Or you could brush up your Spanish or whatever on Duolingo. So reading a book with more than one language is super good for you, and probably fantastic for your child, who is always listening.
Rachelle doesn’t have children, but was a preschool teacher while she was getting her BA in Lit at San Jose State University and was a preschool substitute teacher while getting her MFA in Poetry from Pitt.