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6 French Poems for kids by age group (+ where to find them online)


French school children traditionally learn classic poems in school in order to learn literary techniques and appreciation of language, to build a sense of national identity, and to foster an appreciation of the French language and culture.

In fact, it has been viewed as an important element in developing an understanding of the French language, as well as an appreciation for its nuances and subtlety.

In this article, we will explore the best French poems for kids by age group.

We will also discuss why learning French poems can be an effective way for children to learn French and where parents can find some of these poems online.

What are the benefits of learning French poetry for kids:

French poetry is taught in French schools because it is a fundamental part of French culture.

Learning and reading poetry allows young students to gain an appreciation for the musicality of the French language and to build a wide vocabulary of descriptive language.

It also allows young people to gain a familiarity with iconic pieces of French literature and engage in intellectual discussions about the historical context of certain poems.

Additionally, poetry can help students to develop stronger levels of creative thinking, which can be useful in other areas of study.

Here are five of the top reasons to get your young French learners to learn French poetry:

1. Develops appreciation for language and literature:

Reading and reciting French poetry helps children to develop an appreciation for the beauty of language and literature.

2. Improves literacy skills:

French poetry teaches kids new words and improves their literacy in French. It also teaches them how to express their feelings with imagery and other creative writing techniques.

3. Gives kids another way to express themselves:

Poetry allows kids to express their feelings and emotions in a creative way. Through French poetry, they can connect with others and find a way to communicate with others in their native language.

4. Improves communication skills and the ability to empathize with others:

Learning French poetry can help kids develop communication skills and the ability to empathize with others. It also gives them a language for expressing themselves that non-professional speakers can understand.

5. Introduces children to different cultures:

French poetry helps introduce children to cultures and countries from around the world.

Now that we’ve reviewed the benefits of learning French poetry for kids, let’s dive in! Which poems should your kid learn? Let’s take a look at some of the recommendations from our French teachers here at Bilingual Bebe!

Best French Poems for Elementary School Students

In elementary school, learning poems can help children develop their language skills, improve their vocabulary, and increase their ability to remember information. Poems also help children to understand new concepts such as rhyme and rhythm as well as providing them with an enjoyable and creative activity.

Below are our 6 poems recommendations that will make your kid enjoy learning the french language:

1. Trois escargots Maurice Carême

The poem “J’ai rencontré 3 escargots” by Maurice Carême is a whimsical poem focused on the life of three adventurous escargots. It follows the escargots as they set out on an adventure for a flower, encountering various obstacles along the way. The poem is playful and lighthearted, and encourages readers to find the joys in their own lives.

French poems for kids

2. Le cancre by Jacques Prévert

Le Cancre by Jacques Prevert is a poem about the beauty of being a nonconformist in spite of what society expects of the narrator. The narrator is a young schoolboy who is mocked by the other students and teacher for failing to learn.

Despite not understanding what the teacher says, the narrator remains confident that his answers are correct and refuses to conform. The poem ultimately celebrates the narrator’s independence and refusal to be changed by pressure from outside forces. The poem culminates with the narrator knowingly proving the professor wrong, resulting in the recognition of his own genius.

The poem’s title, “Le Cancre,” is French for “the dunce” or “the lazy student.” The poem is an ode to those who refuse to conform even when they are oppressed by society. The narrator expresses his pride in his independent spirit and refuses to be changed despite the jeers of his peers. The poem celebrates Anissa Bouderraoui

3. Le Renard et le Corbeau by Jean de la Fontaine

Le Renard et le Corbeau is a French fable written by Jean de La Fontaine. It follows a cunning fox who comes upon a raven perched atop a tree. The fox flatters the raven and plays upon its vanity, asking for a taste of the cheese the raven is holding. When the raven lets go of the cheese, the fox quickly grabs it and runs away, leaving the raven with nothing. The moral of the story is to be wary of flatterers and the consequences of vanity.

4. Le chat et l’oiseau by Jacques Prevert

5. La cigale et la fourmi by Jean de La Fontaine

La Cigale et la Fourmi, a classic fable by Jean de La Fontaine, tells the story of how a hard-working ant scorns a lazy cicada when winter comes.

The cicada, having sung and enjoyed itself all summer, is unprepared for the winter and has nothing to eat. The ant mocks the cicada for its lack of foresight and hard work.

In the end, however, the cicada is saved when the sun returns, melting the snow and producing plenty of food for the cicada to eat. The fable becomes a lesson in the importance of industriousness and preparation.

6. Le Lièvre et la tortue by Jean de la Fontaine

Le lièvre et la tortue is a French poem by Jean de la Fontaine. It is a timeless fable which illustrates the idea that slow and steady wins the race. In the poem, the Turtle and The Hare have a footrace, with the Hare underestimating the speed of the Turtle and taking several rest breaks during the race as a result. The Turtle, however, proves to be persistent and ultimately wins the race, due to the Hare’s premature celebration and distraction.

Rien ne sert de courir ; il faut partir à point.

Le Lièvre et la Tortue en sont un témoignage.

Gageons, dit celle-ci, que vous n’atteindrez point

Sitôt que moi ce but. – Sitôt ? Etes-vous sage ?

Repartit l’animal léger.

Ma commère, il vous faut purger

Avec quatre grains d’ellébore.

– Sage ou non, je parie encore.

Ainsi fut fait : et de tous deux

On mit près du but les enjeux :

Savoir quoi, ce n’est pas l’affaire,

Ni de quel juge l’on convint.

Notre Lièvre n’avait que quatre pas à faire ;

J’entends de ceux qu’il fait lorsque prêt d’être atteint

Il s’éloigne des chiens, les renvoie aux Calendes,

Et leur fait arpenter les landes.

Ayant, dis-je, du temps de reste pour brouter,

Pour dormir, et pour écouter

D’où vient le vent, il laisse la Tortue

Aller son train de Sénateur.

Elle part, elle s’évertue ;

Elle se hâte avec lenteur.

Lui cependant méprise une telle victoire,

Tient la gageure à peu de gloire,

Croit qu’il y va de son honneur

De partir tard. Il broute, il se repose,

Il s’amuse à toute autre chose

Qu’à la gageure. A la fin quand il vit

Que l’autre touchait presque au bout de la carrière,

Il partit comme un trait ; mais les élans qu’il fit

Furent vains : la Tortue arriva la première.

Eh bien ! lui cria-t-elle, avais-je pas raison ?

De quoi vous sert votre vitesse ?

Moi, l’emporter ! et que serait-ce

Si vous portiez une maison ?

Jean de La Fontaine.

Best French Poems for middle school students

1. Heureux qui, comme Ulysse, a fait un beau voyage  by Joachim Du Bellay

This French poem by Joachim Du Bellay is a reflection on the eternal quest for knowledge and experience embodied by legendary Greek hero Odysseus (known as Ulysses in Latin). The poem celebrates and admires those who, like Ulysse, chose to “sail beyond the sunset” and explore the unknown. The poet wishes that each person can seek the adventures of Odysseus in his own life by striving ever forward in their own personal “voyage” of life and knowledge, eventually receiving solace and contentment in their journey.

https://www.ralentirtravaux.com/lettres/textes/poemes/heureux-qui-comme-ulysse.php

2. Le Dormeur du Val by Arthur Rimbaud

Le Dormeur du Val is a poem by French writer Arthur Rimbaud, written in 1873. The poem is known as a symbol of serenity and simplicity, in which a peaceful sleeping soldier lies in a valley surrounded by nature. Rimbaud described the landscape of the valley and the emotions of the sleeping man, who seems to be at peace and in harmony with nature. The poem paints the image of a simple, almost pastoral, existence and encourages to escape from materialism and the modern world.

3. Demain des l’aube  by Victor Hugo

Demain dès l’aube is a poem by Victor Hugo about a man starting his morning journey of death and loss. The poem’s speaker mourns and prepares to visit his deceased beloved in the morning. The poem speaks of the man’s feelings of loneliness and desperation over the loss, as well as his deep longing to be reunited with his beloved. The man’s sorrow is also captured beautifully in the poem’s imagery of stars, a fogged sky, and a dark and silent landscape.

Learn about Victor Hugo presentation for kids 7 years old and up: https://maisonvictorhugo.besancon.fr/en/maison-victor-hugo-2/victor-hugo/

4. L’invitation au voyage by Charles Baudelaire

L’invitation au voyage is a poem written by Charles Baudelaire in 1857. It is an invitation by the poet to his love, telling her about the wonders of traveling elsewhere and leaving the worries of everyday life behind. He introduces her to a distant land, far from her homeland, encouraging her to explore and observe new sights, smells, and sounds. He paints a vivid and romantic description of a utopia, where they could explore and forget their troubles. He invites her to go on this voyage with him in pursuit of discovery, beauty and love.

5. Le Pont Mirabeau by Guillaume Apolinaire

Sous le pont Mirabeau coule la Seine

Et nos amours

Faut-il qu’il m’en souvienne

La joie venait toujours après la peine.

Vienne la nuit sonne l’heure

Les jours s’en vont je demeure

Les mains dans les mains restons face à face

Tandis que sous

Le pont de nos bras passe

Des éternels regards l’onde si lasse

Vienne la nuit sonne l’heure

Les jours s’en vont je demeure

L’amour s’en va comme cette eau courante

L’amour s’en va

Comme la vie est lente

Et comme l’Espérance est violente

Vienne la nuit sonne l’heure

Les jours s’en vont je demeure

Passent les jours et passent les semaines

Ni temps passé

Ni les amours reviennent

Sous le pont Mirabeau coule la Seine

Vienne la nuit sonne l’heure

Les jours s’en vont je demeure

Guillaume Apollinaire

6. Chanson d’automne by Paul Verlaine

Chanson d’Automne, written by Paul Verlaine in 1866, is a poetic lament that captures the sorrow and emotion of autumn. The poem is a heartfelt reflection on the transience of life, as the introduction of winter casts a sense of gloom over the days of summer. The speaker mourns the passing of time and hopes for a “lost paradise”, but recognizes the beauty of his anguish and final resignation to nature. It is a contemplation of sadness, its beauty, and its inevitable presence in life

Language activities for kids using French poems

In French schools especially for elementary schools, learning poems was made fun with activities around the words and sentences. Below are a few language activities ideas you can use to engage your children when learning French though poems.

1. Poem Scramble:

Divide the class into small groups and give each group a poem. Ask them to take turns reading it aloud. Then, have the group cut the poem into individual lines and shuffle them up. Ask them to try to put the poem back together in the correct order.

2. Poem-In-A-Bag:

Put each line of the poem into small container such as a paper bag, envelope, or lunch box. Let the students draw one line at a time and piece the poem back together. The more challenging you make the game, the more involved the students must be!

3. Act Out the Poem:

Choose a poem with lots of action words and ask students to act out the words. Or, if there isn’t much action they can use props, such as a toy boat or a paper fish to act out the poem.

4. Clap out the syllables:

Have your child recite a poem and clap out each syllable.

We hope this article was helpful in giving you insights into French poems and French literature as well as how language is learned in French schools. This plays an integral role in learning French culture and introducing French authors and subtlety of the French language start as early as elementary school.

If you want your child to get more immersed in French culture while learning the French language, Bilingual Bebe offers a complete curriculum built by foreign language and childhood education experts as well as a unique online classroom experience.

From celebrations of national holidays and special days to unique customs and cultures, France offers a unique experience for children. Its culture is known for its richness and diversity and as a result, some of the French traditions that kids love have been passed down from generation to generation. From its delectable cuisine to its vibrant festivals, France is a country filled with centuries of traditions and experiences that children will cherish for a lifetime. This article will explore the French traditions that children find wonderfully captivating.

1. Food Traditions

From the humble croissant to the tremendously indulgent chocolat chaud, France has a rich and diverse culinary history that children can enjoy.

#1- Les Crepes:

French traditions that kids love

One of the longest-standing food traditions in France involves crepes, both sweet and savoury. Crepes are typically made in the morning or during the evening at the market, and children can often find them served with cheese and ham, or sweetened with sugar and Nutella.

Kids can help to make their own crêpes, and fill them with their favorite combinations of course. This classic French cultural tradition is one that is enjoyed by both kids and adults alike!

The French crêpe is a thin pancake that has been popular in France since at least the 12th century. In its most basic form, a crêpe is made of a simple batter of flour, milk, eggs, and melted butter. The batter is poured on a special type of griddle called a “crêpière” and quickly cooked on both sides, resulting in a light and flexible pancake that can easily be filled with a variety of sweet or savory fillings.

The precise origin of the French crêpe is unknown, but it is believed to have developed originally in Brittany, a region of northwestern France. The traditional Breton crêpe is made without milk and is often filled with salted butter and thick local ciders. Over time, the crêpe spread throughout France and became a staple of urban and rural communities, adapted to a variety of local tastes and ingredients. Today, crêpes are popular across France as a breakfast food, street food, or dessert and can be filled with sweet or savory fillings. In addition, the crêpe has become a mainstay of French cuisine and can be found in high-end restaurants across the country.

#2-La Fondue

French Traditions that kids love

Another food tradition that children adore is fondue, a savoury dish of melted cheese, and is usually served with crusty baguettes and vegetables.

The fondue tradition is said to have originated in Switzerland in the late 18th century, when a shortage of fuel for cooking left people looking for ways to use whatever ingredients were on hand. Cheese and melted cheese dishes, as well as croutons, would be added to a pot and heated over an open flame. Eventually, pieces of bread and potatoes would be dipped into the hot cheese or melted butter. The popularity of fondue increased over time throughout Europe and eventually became popular in the United States in the 1960s.

#3-La galette des rois

French traditions that kids love

La galette is a type of cake or pastry found in many regions of France. It can vary from region to region, but usually consists of a base made of either puff pastry or breton pastry and topped with a variety of fillings, such as almond cream, apples, prunes, or chocolate. It is often served during New Year’s Eve and Christmas, as well as other occasions.

The galette des rois tradition is believed to have originated in France and dates back centuries. The tradition can be traced back to the Middle Ages when merchants presented it to French royalty to celebrate the Epiphany (the celebration of the arrival of the three Wise Men). The traditional galette contains a small figurine or “feve” (bean) hidden inside. The person who finds the feve is believed to be the “king” or “queen” of the day.

2. Cultural Traditions

For kids, attending a festival or carnival is also a cherished tradition. From the famous Fete de la Musique in Paris to smaller regional fètes, these events offer plenty of opportunities to dress up, go on rides and sample local delicacies.

1. The Spring Fête de Printemps

A festival of the beginning of spring, usually celebrated in late March to early April. This typically includes traditional French dances, food, and crafts. It is a fun way to incorporate a bit of French culture into your child’s life.

2. Pâques (Easter)

An annual festival celebrated for the memory of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Pâques is an important holiday for French families. During this time, many families will dye eggs, go on egg hunts, and nibble on chocolate bunny crafted by artisan chocolatiers.

3. Celebration of Bastille Day or Quatorze Juillet

This annual holiday marks the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille, the beginning of the French Revolution. Kids can learn a bit of French history while also participating in parades, concerts, and fireworks events that usually mark Bastille Day celebrations.

Historically, Bastille Day marks the storming of the Bastille fortress-prison by the people of France and set into motion the French Revolution.

The Bastille was originally built in the 14th century as a fortress-prison and was used by the monarchy in France to punish their political opponents. It became a symbol of the monarchy’s power and oppression in the 17th and 18th centuries.

In 1789, the people of France rose up in rebellion against the monarchy. On the morning of July 14th, the people of Paris marched to the Bastille, laid siege to the building, and freed the seven prisoners who were being held there. This event marked the beginning of the French Revolution and was the symbol of the people’s struggle to overthrow the monarch’s oppressive rule.

Today the storming of the Bastille is remembered with parades, fireworks, and festivals across France on July 14th, Bastille Day. Every year, the French President makes a traditional speech on the day, followed by a celebration and fireworks display at the Eiffel Tower.

5. Fete de la musique

French traditions that kids love

The Fête de la Musique is a French celebration of music which takes place every year on June 21st. The date marks the beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. This day is also the summer solstice, which is when the sun is at its maximum elevation in the sky, providing hours of daylight for enjoying music outdoors.

The holiday was established in 1982 by Jack Lang, the French Minister of Culture at the time, with the goal of making music accessible to everyone. The event is celebrated all over France and celebrated with live music performances in parks, squares, and public spaces. The celebration has since expanded through Europe and the world, and is now celebrated by more than 300 cities. It has come to represent an annual celebration of music and culture, a phenomenon that allows everyone to appreciate music regardless of skill and fashion.

Another French tradition that many kids look forward to is the classic Sunday afternoon family stroll. This can consist of a leisurely walk through a local park to visit with friends, or a more intensive hike up a mountain trail. Either way, the chance to get out into nature and spend quality time together is an experience all French families enjoy. Additionally, parents might also take the chance to teach their children about unique plant and wildlife that populate the area. The importance of preserving these natural areas is an important lesson for French children.

6. Mardi Gras

In France, Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, is the final day of the Carnival celebration just before Ash Wednesday. Traditionally, the day is filled with parades and other festivities, most notably the city’s largest ball which is held in Nice, France on the Promenade des Anglais. There, people from all parts of the world come to dance and revel in the pre-Lenten festivities.

French traditions kids love

Mardi Gras (also known as Fat Tuesday or Carnival) is an important festival celebrated in France that occurs the day before Ash Wednesday. There are many activities available for kids to enjoy during Mardi Gras, including parades, dancing, music, street theatre and food.

One of the most popular events in Mardi Gras is the Grand Parade. Many towns in France hold their own parades and feature marching bands, dancers, clowns and elaborate floats. Kids will enjoy the colorful costumes, clowns and other fun aspects of the parade.

Mardi Gras is also celebrated through dancing. Traditional French dances such as the farandole, the saltarello and the bourrée can be performed by kids, and traditional music is often performed during Mardi Gras parties. In some places, a dance called the “Round of Kings” is also done, in which the invited kids form a circle and dance around the “King” or “Queen” of the circle.

Conclusion:

We hope this article was helpful in giving more insights into French cultural traditions that kids are fond of. At Bilingual Bebe we make it a priority to not only immerse children in the language but also French culture knowledge. Through small group classes, children get the benefits of conversing in the language and share about their culture and personal attach to the language with friends from around the world. A much more valuable and enriching experience that a one on one session.

Are you dreaming of your family speaking Spanish fluently? You can make this dream become a reality with Spanish immersion. 

How can you immerse yourself in Spanish, especially if you don’t live in a Spanish-speaking country? The answer here is not to move across the world. You can stay right where you are and create an immersive experience right at your own home. 

Just by making a few small changes, you can create an immersive environment from the comfort of your own home. The most important thing to do is to weave Spanish into everything that you do. 

Spanish immersion doesn’t have to be expensive. While Spanish immersion schools may be the best option out there to encourage language fluency, it’s completely possible to do this from your home and for little to no cost. Here are some small changes that you can make in your daily lives to encourage language learning for your whole family today. 

Change 1: Change the settings in your electronic devices 

With technology at our fingertips, you have an easy opportunity to pick up some native phrases and immerse yourself and your family in Spanish by switching all of your device’s language to Spanish. 

Since we commonly use phones, tablets, the TV, and computer, you will be surprised as to how much vocabulary you will learn from making this switch. As you download new apps, do some research, and communicate with friends and family, you’ll be learning as you’re doing habitual tasks. Changing your electronic devices to Spanish easily boost your skills. 

Change 2: Mix up your daily vocabulary

Do you know the Spanish word for every object in your house? Start enhancing your vocabulary with things you talk about every day right under your nose.

You don’t need to put sticky notes on every single object in your own home to learn vocabulary (unless you really want to). However, if you don’t know the word for some objects, it’s a great idea to look it up and write it down. Writing down new words is a memory technique that will help you remember and be able to recall the word later on. 

Although big goals are great, It’s best to start small. If you write down the name of every object in your home, you can easily be overwhelmed with new information. It’s best to start with just a few objects (or the objects in one room) at a time to build your vocabulary comfortably, get used to using them in a sentence, and then move on to the next set. 

Change 3: Start surfing in Spanish

Where do we search for the majority of information? The internet. 

The next time that you are searching for information, tracking down a recipe, shopping for gifts, getting on social media, or even checking world news – try searching in Spanish. By typing keywords into the search bar, you’ll see a variety of search results completely in Spanish. This is a great way to immerse yourself in Spanish as a native speaker would.

Reading recipes or following food guides, you will have a great way for you and your family to get familiar with Spanish in the kitchen. As far as social media goes, start following some Latin celebrities to see how they communicate, give compliments, use slang, and choose hashtags on different topics. 

Caution: when following celebrities, pay attention to where they are from. Each Spanish-speaking country has its own dialect. What does this mean? It means that their vocabulary may differ from the vocabulary that you are already learning. 

Although different dialects can be great for you to expand your vocabulary, it’s better to focus on one dialect at the beginning of your Spanish immersion. For example, Spanish from Spain is quite different from Spanish spoken in Latin America. In this dialect, you will not only find different vocabulary words, but also a different verb conjugation that is only used in Spain. If you are not planning to travel to Spain, it may be better to focus on a different dialect for your first one. Staying in one dialect will help you build consistency within your fluency, but in the future, diving into different dialects can really help your Spanish take off to the next level.  

Change 4: Create stories and journal 

Depending on the age of your children, journaling every day in Spanish can be a great way to enhance their language skills (and your own!). Journaling is a way to express creativity and emotions. It’s also a great way to calm down, relax, and think about your day. Doing this in Spanish will be a great way to practice reflection, build a train of thought, and practice different sentence constructions. 

Even if you only start with a few sentences, bullet points, or just a few words, this will encourage more brain function in Spanish.

If your child isn’t old enough to journal, encourage them to draw and create a story about their picture in Spanish to practice their thinking, description skills, and language development. 

Change 5: Read in Spanish

Reading in Spanish is a great way to immerse yourself in Spanish. 

Reading stories encourages imagination and builds vocabulary quickly. Books have endless topics, themes, lessons to learn, and teachable moments. From learning about dragons, to cooking your favorite meal, to following sports, the vocabulary possibilities are endless. 

Luckily, many popular children’s books and novels are available in Spanish already, as Spanish is a very popular language. Although there are many great books written in Spanish, you also have the option to find your favorite book properly translated.

You can read your favorite books to your children in Spanish and have them follow along. If you are already familiar with stories, it makes it very easy to understand the vocabulary without having to pause to grab a dictionary. 

If you’re interested in reading some of the best children’s books in Spanish, check out this article of the 10 best Spanish books for kids or 15 top-rated bilingual books for kids (in English and Spanish). 

Change 6: Write to-do lists in Spanish

This may be challenging at first, especially because thinking of your to-do list might be a stressful task. But practicing your writing skills and your everyday vocabulary will really help you improve your fluency level and create an immersive experience.

By writing a to-do list and talking about what your daily plans are with your family, you realize how many everyday words you may not be familiar with already.

 Once you write down a new word, be sure to put it on a flashcard to keep practicing afterward.

Change 7: Learn while you relax with a movie

Want to catch up on the latest TV series, watch a movie with the family, or give your child some screen time? 

With the globalization of our world today, you’re likely to find your favorite TV series or movie available in Spanish. However, it’s even better to find a Spanish or Latin program and get exposed to their movie culture while learning the language. On many streaming services, you’ll have the option to search for programs in different languages, but if you can’t find anything you’re interested in – take a look at YouTube! 

If you need to find a place to get started, we’ve done some research and have found 7 great movies in Spanish for your whole family and 12 TV shows in Spanish for kids

Change 8: Use your commute to your advantage

We spend a lot of time each day commuting. Whether it’s driving the kids to school, going to work, driving to the store, taking your child to soccer practice, play dates, a long road trip – we commute for hours and hours every week. 

Commuting is the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in Spanish while driving, taking the bus, or walking to your destination. There are many Spanish audiobooks, podcasts, and radio stations that you can put on to pass the time and learn! You can listen to a kid-friendly novel, an intriguing podcast, or jam out to some Latin music. This is a great way to pick up vocabulary on the go while accomplishing your daily tasks. By exposing yourself and your family to Spanish while you’re on the go, you’re encouraging fluency. 

Spotify, Amazon, FM radio, and Apple Music have tons of options for Spanish playlists just waiting for you to listen. Some of these music apps provide you with lyrics while you’re listening. Although you may not be able to enjoy this feature if you’re driving, it’s great for others in the car to use to follow along with the lyrics. 

After a while, you’ll be able to sing along to your favorite new songs. If you don’t have the lyrics in front of you, it’s important to listen actively and not passively, so you can pick out keywords and phrases to benefit from the music.

Change 9: Take language classes online

Constant practice can make all the difference. Reading and listening are great ways to immerse yourself in Spanish, but if you aren’t speaking on a regular basis, you are missing out on a very important skill. 

One great way to have active conversations is by taking classes online. There are many different types of classes out there, so it can be a bit hard to make a choice. Especially for children, having outside resources and reinforcement for Spanish immersion can be quite helpful for their bilingual development. 

When choosing a class, it’s important to find a native, certified teacher that is well-experienced and can really help your child. With BilingualBebe, you can have access to an online learning program with a curriculum designed to help children reach a higher level of fluency. Online classes for kids and tweens (ages 3-12) can help enrich your child’s bilingual development fast and fits within your schedule. Most importantly, this program creates a unique classroom experience, connecting bilingual children from around the world. Your child will converse and collaborate with classmates in the language all while learning to write and read. You can try out this unique classroom experience to help immerse your child with a free trial lesson

Change 10: Check out local events and activities

In many cities, there are groups of Spanish-speaking people who come together for activities, services, and socialization. 

To really immerse yourself and your family in Spanish, search in your area for any groups, outdoor activities, book clubs, church services, outdoor groups, tea time, or any classes that are offered in Spanish. A quick Google search will help you find a new world of activities happening in your community or the surrounding area. 

If you can’t find any information online, go to your local town hall and ask if there are any programs that they’re aware of. Chances are, you’ll have luck with finding some local events! 

Change 11: Travel abroad

If this is something that works for your family, what’s a better to immerse yourself in Spanish than visiting a Spanish-speaking country? 

By visiting a Spanish-speaking country, you’ll be using Spanish in real-time and with native speakers. Not only will you get the opportunity to speak more, but you will also be immersed in the culture at the same time. 

Consider searching for a type of language exchange program or a Spanish immersion program for the whole family. 

But before traveling, making these changes to help you start being more accustomed to Spanish in your own home is a great way to learn at your own pace without any pressure. By getting consistent with your practice, you and your family will become fluent in no time. 

Is Spanish immersion possible at home? 

As you can see, Spanish immersion is 100% possible from inside the comfort of your own home. 

Exposure is the most important element in learning a language and achieving fluency. Even without living in a Spanish-speaking country, making small changes in your daily life can really help you immerse yourself further and reach the next level. Consistency is key.

Bilingual education is a means of instruction in two languages at the same time using a distinct school curriculum, usually in a face-to face program. 

A bilingual education is typically offered by a special institution that is equipped to instruct various subject manners in two languages simultaneously. These types of programs are structured in a way where they split the teaching language throughout the day, usually in a 50/50 division. This is one of the best ways to have a bilingual education, however, finding a school like this may be a bit difficult depending on where you live. 

Another way to give your child a bilingual education is by speaking in a minority language at home, teaching age-appropriate curriculum at home in the minority language, watching educational movies, having external bilingual classes to encourage further interaction, and so on. This requires a blend of face to face school and homeschooling due to the level of curriculum that will need to be provided. Although this may be a more rigorous route, it is still a very effective way to have a bilingual education. 

In any case, there are pros and cons to a bilingual education in the typical school setting and we will discuss some key elements. 

Pros of Bilingual Education

1. Improved brain functioning and memory

Some scientists believe that learning more than one language improves and strengthens various parts of the brain. By adopting a second language, your brain learns to recognize patterns quickly and draw connections. This improves your mental state and learning capability in multiple ways. As the brain strengthens thanks to one subject, it gets stronger overall. 

Think of your brain as a muscle. If you run, your legs get stronger and you get faster. As a result, you are overall in better shape, your breathing improves, your ability to perform cardio improves, your abdominals strengthen, etc. It’s like a domino effect — each muscle has an effect on the next. This is true with the muscles and capabilities of your brain as well. 

2. Better career opportunities

As the career world is increasingly more competitive, having another language in your tool belt will be a great advantage when looking for a job.

By speaking another language and having the ability to preform your job in two or more languages at the same time can dramatically improve your chances of landing a job in the future. Especially if your child could be interested in working for an international firm, a second language may even be required. Not only can an additional language be valuable for landing a job, it can also be beneficial to seeing an increase in salary.

Another language opens doors to more communication with colleagues, clients, and recruiters.

3. It creates an opportunity for early diversity

Being exposed to another language and culture means that children will be aware that more than one way of life exists. 

Children are not concerned with societal issues like adults are. The average child is the most concerned with making friends, playing games, and having fun in their life. Because of this, bilingual children have an easier opportunity to celebrate and enjoy differences instead of shying away from them. This is an attitude that they will learn to embrace throughout their lives. 

4. Easier to participate in exchange programs

If you attend a bilingual school, chances are that there will be opportunities to study abroad and participate in an exchange program. Even at a monolingual school, public or private, there may also be opportunities for a foreign exchange program, but the spots for the trip are generally limited. 

In bigger schools, there are only a certain number of places, but many children that are interested. When it comes down to it, the details matter. Speaking a second language will be an advantage over the rest of the crowd.

At the university level, many undergraduate courses are only taught in one language. By choosing to study abroad in a country where you speak the language, you’ll be eligible for scholarships and will be able to have an amazing experience while taking care of your degree. 

If you ever want to prepare your child for the opportunity to study abroad whether in a small group, in the high school level, or in university level, bilingual education is a great way to prepare.

5. Beneficial for your travels

Being bilingual is a huge advantage when it comes to traveling. 

If you go to a place where you speak the local language, the locals will generally be a bit more friendly. By speaking the local language, you’re already showing interest in their culture, so the people automatically feel appreciated and more understood. 

It’s an exciting time to get to chat with locals about all of their favorite places to visit in their country, where to find the best food, the coolest local events, and advice for what not to do while you’re visiting. 

6. It’s easier for a child to learn a second language

Children’s brains are at their peak capacity for learning and develop the quickest when they are young. Being exposed to a language at an early stage in life will help children absorb complex information at an easier rate. 

Learning one language is a difficult task, but learning two languages at the same time coincide with each other because it is the same process. 

While adults learning a second language may feel pressured to speak perfectly or feel embarrassment due to accents and making mistakes, children are the opposite. When children are learning any language, they will make mistakes and easily learn from them.  Children generally feel less pressure to perform when learning a second language and also do not experience the same type of embarrassment when making a mistake. 

7. Learning one new language makes it easier to learn more

Once children begin learning a second language, the language development part of their brain strengthens. 

Their brain is trained to recognize patterns in more than one way. Sentence structures, vocabulary, subject verb agreement, etc. are just a few patterns that children will have to pick up on to learn a second language. 

If your child wants to learn a third language in the future, starting with a second language will make this a faster process. Once their brain has adapted to this type of learning, it makes it much easier to go through the process again in the future. It’s much easier for someone to learn a third language once they know a second. 

Cons of Bilingual Education

1. Learning specific content can be extremely difficult

For younger children, although it is the best time for them to learn, they can experience second-language difficulties starting off. 

When things are new, they are especially difficult. New concepts in a new language can bring stress to young students who just want to communicate with their friends, teachers, and peers. 

2. Education in a second language can be inconsistent 

If you live in an area that has a school offering bilingual education, chances are that that school has an age limit. 

Some bilingual schools are for kindergarten, elementary, and middle school, but then do not have a high school program. And on the reverse side, some schools only offer bilingual education to high schoolers. 

Because of this type of inconsistency in the school system, children may lose some of their bilingual skills due to the lack of usage. Although a bilingual education is a great advantage, if your child never uses their second language after finishing a certain school level, it might be forgotten.

3. A bilingual education is not cheap

Foreign language programs are not the cheapest form of education. 

Arts and language programs are being cut around the nation due to high costs. Many schools have to focus on monolingual curriculum unless a second language is mandated by the state. 

On top of that, any extra curricular language learning activities will most likely come at some expense. Although it is a valuable skill that will be worth it in the end, it’s important to consider the costs at the beginning. 

4. There may be a lack of qualified teachers and assistants

For bilingual education to succeed, it has to provide children with quality exposure. This quality of exposure can only be found in teachers and teaching assistants who are fully fluent in both languages being taught and have adequate teaching experience. 

Although it could be a great opportunity for a non-fluent teacher or teaching assistant to improve their language skills, it would not necessarily be a fully immersive experience for the students. The demand for quality teachers around the nation is always high and finding quality teachers at a monolingual school is difficult enough. 

Having a fluent second language is a big requirement and can be hard for some schools to find the talent among the other qualities and skills needed to be a successful teacher. Not everyone who speaks two languages fluently possess the knowledge, skills, and patience to be a teacher and fit into a culture that embraces fast paced development.  

5. Bilingual education can shift a student’s focus

In a standard bilingual school, the language learning is split roughly 50/50 throughout the day. If a child is having trouble learning and using their second language, they can fall behind in other subjects or lose interest in language learning. 

Although this isn’t too common, the only way to improve the minority language is through practice. More practice requires more time focusing on the language and less time focusing on other extracurricular activities throughout the day like art, music, sports, workshop, etc.

If a child feels like they are missing out on “fun” activities throughout the day, they might have a shift in their focus. They may start focusing negatively on what they are missing out on instead of on what they can to gain with more practice. 

6. It prevents student involvement in local culture

If a young child is learning two languages and two cultures at the same time, they may have a hard time “fitting in” with people who don’t have the same cultural interests. 

Of course, making friends in class will be easy, but there may be a culture gap with monolingual children at first simply because they have different routines, communication styles, and ways of processing information. This is a unique extreme, but can be an isolating situation for children who are adjusting to people who only have one language and one culture.

7. It comes with preconceived ideas 

Bilingualism and learning about other cultures can be associated with a touchy subject: immigration. Some communities have a negative view on the structure of bilingual schools. Some see it as a way that immigrants can avoid adapting to the new culture that they live in. 

This is certainly a challenge that must be known and must not heavily impact your decision of bilingual education. There is no way to please everyone in any circumstance, and bilingual education, although extremely beneficial, is no different. 

Our Conclusion: Why Bilingual Education is Important

Although there is an equal amount of pros and cons on this list, the benefits of bilingual education greatly outweigh the disadvantages. 

Bilingual education can be something difficult to begin with, but it is one of the most important things that you can do to prepare your child for the future. Considering the quick rate of globalization, the benefits of knowing a second language will be even more significant in the near future. 

For the next generation, this will be a highly sought after skill and may even be considered more of a standard. As learning a language is much easier for children, it makes sense to adopt a bilingual education program from an early age – just be sure to continue bilingual education efforts outside of and after school.

Have you ever met someone who can speak a language fluently, but cannot read or write? Aside from children who haven’t yet learned literacy skills, this is still a common issue in our world today. When learning a second language, a lot of people focus on only the speaking and understanding aspect. Well, what about the reading? 

Especially if your second language has a different alphabet and writing system, it’s important to start learning this from a young age. Being able to read books, road signs, menus, directions, and even advertisements on the subway are very important to help you fully understand and appreciate your language. 

Imagine knowing a second language, visiting a country where it is the native language, and yet still having worries communicating due to the absence of literacy skills. This is an issue that is all too common, but one that can be avoided. 

In this article, we will be discussing more about what biliteracy is, how children can achieve it, and the benefits of being biliterate. 

What is Biliteracy?

what is biliteracy

Biliteracy is the ability to proficiently read and write in two languages. 

A similar term, not to be confused with biliteracy, is bilingualism. Bilingualism is the ability to fluently speak two languages. A person who is biliterate may not be bilingual, and a person who is bilingual may not always be biliterate. Speaking, listening, and reading and writing are different skills that require a lot of work and therefore, have different terms to describe them. 

Both skills are very important to possess and even more important to begin learning at a young age. 

When do children start to read and write?

Children typically begin to read and write at a steady pace in school. 

This is a gradual process that begins at a young age. In many countries, children will begin their literacy journey in pre-school or kindergarten. However, in some countries, like Poland, Finland, Guatemala and others, children do not begin to work on their literacy skills until 7 years old.

Although children can begin learning the alphabet as early as 2-3 years old, they typically don’t start to put words together and attach meaning to their phonetics until they are about 7-8 years old. However, if your child is 2-3 years old and seems very disinterested and fights to learn – it may be best to wait a few months longer, so they can really focus. 

When do children start to read and write in their second language?

Children can learn to read and write in the second language at the same time as their first. 

There is no need to wait for a child to become literate in one language to begin the next. Their young minds are flexible and strong enough to learn and separate two languages at the same time and work on their biliteracy skills. 

Most children will be able to pick up quickly on sounds and letters to gain progress right away. 

As learning to be biliterate in two languages is double the work, they will need some extra support. Although it will require practice, the best time for children to start learning another language is as soon as they can! The more exposure that they have to a language in their early life, the more fluently it will come to them as they grow. 

How to Ensure Biliteracy in Children

Biliteracy

Biliteracy is a learned ability that takes patience and practice. Here are a few tips to ensure that your child will become biliterate: 

Learn Letters

The first step to reading is understanding letters and their sounds. This is the basis to phonetics and can be done in two languages at the same time. Letter recognition can be further developed when paired alongside tracing letters, writing letters, and recognizing them independently. 

Sometimes recognizing letters can be a guessing game or a slightly passive activity, but by having your child write or trace the letters while they work with the phonetic sound, they will be training their brains to truly follow along. 

Having a strong alphabetical recognition in both of their languages will help set their foundation when it comes time for reading. 

Bilingual Books

After learning to recognize letters, it’s time to start with words and small books. The best way to encourage biliteracy in children is to build a great bookshelf. 

By building a bookshelf, we don’t mean physically. We mean that having books available in both languages that are appropriate for their reading level will do the trick! Having books in both of their languages will give your young one ample opportunity to practice both languages. 

Make sure that your child is having equal exposure to languages in their books, or take a look at some bilingual books to maximize their reading time. For example, if you notice that your child prefers their French book about butterflies more than their English book about sea creatures– start looking for the same topics in both languages to peak their interests! 

Kids are more excited to learn when they like the subject and can pick out their own books, so make sure that there are plenty of options.

Read Out Loud

When you or your child picks up a book to read – the best thing to do is to read it out loud with them. By reading out loud, children can practice the correct pronunciation, hear how it sounds to read confidently, and also discover any funny character voices along the way. 

Children learn how to verbally express themselves by watching and listening. If you read aloud with a lot of emphasis on different characters or even animal noises, it helps them understand the emotion behind words and situations. Furthermore, they can learn to copy the emphasis and read with emotion. 

Reading out loud will help your child in more areas than just literacy. By reading aloud, they will quickly strengthen their vocabulary and their sentence structures. As another bonus, reading aloud with your child in both languages encourages family bonding! 

Comprehension Skills

After children are able to start recognizing words and letters on their own, it’s important to have books that appropriate for their level. 

By getting into the habit of reading books for their level, they will be able to strengthen their currently skill and build on their level and continue progressing. Not only is it important to let your child read and understand, it’s also important to be engaging about what they’ve read. For example, it’s great to ask questions about the story after while it’s happening (or after it’s over) to ensure that they are following along. This question and answer process allows them to reflect on what they’ve read and will help ready their minds for discussion. 

For biliterate children, book discussions (or question and answers) are very important to allow them to connect what they read with their speaking skills. This will sharpen the mind in multiple ways!

You can start off by asking what their favorite part of the book is, who the main character is, what animals they’ve noticed, how many trees they saw in their picture book, what do they think will happen next— the possibilities here are endless. The important part is not which questions you ask, it’s that you ask questions in general to encourage a fun discussion that they will enjoy.

Audiobooks and music

Another way to reinforce biliteracy is to use outside sources. Podcasts for kids that function as audiobooks are a great way for children to follow along – especially if an adult can’t be with them when they need help with some words.  

Reading and reciting lyrics in music can be a great way for children to practice their reading skills and have fun while doing it. Singing incorporates another part of their brain that can help enhance their comprehension abilities. 

Classes

As becoming biliterate can be a bit of a challenge, it’s hard to know where to turn for outside help, especially if your child needs extra attention and outside influences to stay engaged.

Online classes that aid in helping your child learn a second language make all the difference in their learning journey to biliteracy and bilingualism. At ages 3-12, children are at their highest and quickest learning capacity. 

Bilingualbebe is an online institute that understands that this age is critical for children who are becoming biliterate. This online learning hub offers individual and group classes from a native, certified teacher in live virtual classes. With Bilingualbebe, you have the option to put your best foot forward by signing your child up for French, Spanish, English, Arabic, or Chinese classes. 

The Effects of Biliteracy on a Developing Mind

What is biliteracy

Biliteracy is a great skill that your child will be thankful for throughout their entire life that will provide them with a variety of benefits such as: 

  • A strong mind – People who know two languages are continually learning and accomplishing difficult things. Not only do they experience cognitive benefits and perform better academically, children equipped with biliteracy and bilingualism develop a growth mindset. By constantly developing their brain at a young age, this is a great habit that is built to carry them into their future.
  • Access to global information – By knowing a second language and being able to read information, they will have access to double the research, double the books, double the news – you name it! Global information is not always readily available in English and the best place to learn is at the source. 
  • Building relationships – One amazing benefit to learning a second language is the opportunity to cultivate relationships. Connecting with people from other cultures has never been easier than it is now in our digital world. Being able to write and understand messages, posts, and other communication efforts in a second language opens up possibilities to make friends all over the world and expand their circle. 
  • Cultural awareness – Studies have shown that people who speak more than one language are very in tune to emotions and have great situation awareness. This allows them to see things from another person’s perspective and fosters empathy. Furthermore, having a second language encourages them to understand and take interest in other cultures. 

Conclusion

As you can see, raising a child to be biliterate isn’t the easiest thing to do, but it is one of the most important things that you can do for your child. Becoming fluent in more than one language requires persistency, time, and a constant exposure to both languages – especially the minority language. Not only do you have to focus on speaking, but also reading and writing skills to reach full fluency. 

The good news is that there are many people in similar situations that want their child to become bilingual and achieve biliteracy. In this case, it’s important to realize that you and your family are not alone in this great adventure with your child, and there are many resources out there that can help you achieve this goal. 

If French or Spanish is your target second language, be sure to check out these books for your children:

Learn Arabic online for kids

We want to cultivate the very best path of opportunities for our kids, encouraging them to grow into self-assured and promising young adults.

The world is constantly merging into multicultural zones, creating beautiful highlights and contrasts of cultures, but within this blending process, our younger members can lose touch with their roots and find themselves competing to stand out in the crowd on various fronts.

Learning Arabic online can give them that needed connection to their ancestry while providing them with the coveted skill of bilingualism. 

Providing a roof, clothes, safety, security, homework help, cleaning, cooking, maintenance, etc for your kids – all while working a full-time job – can be overwhelming; it’s hard to imagine teaching an extra language on top of all that. Many households have Arabic-speaking parents while their second-generation immigrant children have mainly only retained the English spoken around them. The parents may feel disconnected from their children and worry that their children are missing out on a major aspect of their heritage. 

Introducing Arabic is often an endeavour that’s considered but then abandoned because the idea is so daunting and so many teachable options lack the flexibility and fun needed for a busy family with a distractible young one.

The truth is, there are online options that will adapt to your family’s schedule and needs, while engaging your little one. 

How Kids Learn Best

Some parents go for mobile apps, hoping the screen’s vibrancy will command their attention. Unfortunately, implementing apps to learn Arabic online for kids can be limiting since their programming isn’t properly interactive or individualized.

# Lack of conversational dimension

They can also lack the conversational and sensory dimension needed to help with retention.

# Geared toward learning for adults

Some apps can be costly, while others aren’t suitable to learn Arabic online for kids, but are instead geared more toward adults.

# Best suited for maintenance

Apps seem to be good for maintenance but not as the main source of curriculum.

The best time to learn Arabic online for kids is between the ages of 1-13 while their brains are still elastic.

Learning Arabic Online for Kids

Learning arabic online for kids

Instead, more and more parents are turning to collaborative online programs like Bilingual Bebe to teach and learn Arabic online for kids.

# Curriculum built by Foreign Language experts and Childhood educators

Not only are the programs adaptable and fluid to the individual, they’re also socially immersive, structured, and integrated with home life. Assignments, activities, and a curriculum built by certified foreign language experts, while a professional instructor conducts the class online with a small handful of other kids. 

# Small group format that fosters engagement and a sense of community

The best online language programs for kids understood that learning one on one with a tutor for younger kids won’t create the best engagement. Instead learning with a small group of children sharing similar background will not only help increase engagement, children can also relate to one another. They are happy to meet other children alike. Creating international friendships with children with same family dynamic makes such an impact. They understand why they’re learning the language, they belong to a community.

# Gamification paired with traditional learning experience

In order to create consistency, children need to have fun. The best way for them to learn is for them to not realize they are learning. Learning Arabic online for kids comes with gamification. Curriculum are built around games and themes geared toward what appeals to each age group. It is difficult enough to get children to learn a language they sometime do not speak at home, so having fun and a curriculum built by K-12 education expert is key to making this a successful endeavour.

What ensues is learning on a holistic level; invoking all the senses to retain the material through songs, readings, games, exercises, conversation, and playing together. 

These well-rounded programs seem to yield the best results by far. It’s not easy to learn Arabic online for kids – they need to be engaged and having fun, otherwise, they lose focus. Classroom models tend to center blackboards and grammar textbooks rather than play and sensory development. Plus, you don’t want to give up any more of your time with them to some stuffy classroom. 

With Bilingual Bebe, you get to enjoy seeing and hearing about their learning journey while still being able to tend to your many other responsibilities. This will help you to help them when the cameras turn off, and you can also find additional support in the online learning group with the other parents taking part. 

Your child will become more enriched and motivated every class and you’ll start to see all the possibilities opening up ahead of them and we want to help that vision become more clear. They’ll be able to do so many things that monolingual people won’t get to experience.

How Your Child Will Benefit From Being Bilingual

Learn arabic online for kids

Learning a language expands the mind and increases the impact of positive impressions within society. In the process of learning a language, the brain begins to stretch and build in really dynamic ways, becoming more:

  • Creative
  • Adaptable
  • Focused/Attentive
  • Able to multitask
  • Retaining (holding things in memory more efficiently and fighting off Alzheimer’s and Dementia)
  • Adept at problem-solving and critical thinking
  • Adept at communication and emotional intelligence.

These traits then translate to many other physical and opportunistic benefits. People who grew up learning more than one language test and score better in school, accumulate more nuanced cultural and literary interests & knowledge and are more likely to qualify for scholarships and grants based on linguistics or other byproducts of their curious minds. 

Bilingual folks enjoy travelling with ease to a number of countries, connecting with people from other cultures they would never have been able to with a language barrier. Making connections like these significantly alters our worldviews and helps to make us more multifaceted people with balanced perspectives. 

Even more, enlightenment opens up for our kids when they get to connect with their personal heritage and mother tongue. 

How Your Child Will Benefit from Learning Arabic 

Arabic is such a wonderful language, carrying with it context for such a rich and lively community, culture, and spirituality just waiting to be understood in all its complexity. There are so many advantages to learning Arabic online for kids to gain insight into the language – even if it isn’t their background. The more immersed they become, the more they’ll naturally take on the speech patterns, pronunciation, accent, and slang too.

#Financially

The Middle East is seeing an influx in their economy thanks to the abundance of valuable natural resources in the region. With the language in tow, one can leverage many well-paying job prospects in their favor. The demand for English-Arabic speakers is high for positions like research, investment, development, translation, negotiation, military liaisons, international relations, overseas coordination, and general business operations. Less than 1% of US students can speak Arabic as well as English, making these frontiers much less competitive for those who do. Your child will stand out in a market that tends to pay very well. 

#Emotionally

Arabic, though not too popular in North America, is still in the top 5 most widely spoken languages on earth, with vast spacial coverage. Over 290 million people speak Arabic worldwide, each becoming a potentially significant person in your child’s life. Imagine all the extra connections and possibilities! Being able to communicate with fellow humans is one of the most rewarding and influential forces we can find, especially those who live differently from us. Who knows, your child’s soul mate or future business partner could be an Arabic speaker.  

#Intelligently

Many other languages have Arabic at their center, making it what’s called a bridge language. If your child learns Arabic, they’re already halfway to learning Farsi and considerably closer to knowing Turkish and Hebrew. The foundation is already going to be there, making other language patterns and accents much easier to grasp. Why stop at two?

It’s like a buy 1, get 3 for half-price kind of deal. So many new windows open up for those who have even elementary knowledge of multiple languages. Muscle memory is able to create associations and link connections quickly, helping with remembering new words and phrases, even in a different language. Just like Spanish is easier to learn if you know French, as they’re both Latin-based – Arabic and its adjacent languages are all Semitic style languages, carrying related words and roots throughout. Even unrelated languages carry Arabic influence, like English and French, making it a crucial linguistic centerpiece. 

English words that are inspired by Arabic include: 

  • Alcohol
  • Magazine
  • Ghoul
  • Algebra
  • Sofa
  • Candy
  • Checkmate
  • Coffee
  • Saffron
  • Average
  • Cotton

#Culturally

Learning Arabic is about so much more than collecting an extra language; it can become a monumental step in destigmatizing the culture as a whole. When you can understand the words, you can become part of the narrative. Inserting oneself into, or even just listening to, the polarizing discourses surrounding Arabic religion, war, and customs is only productive when you’re exposed to all sides, which means you first must understand the Arabic people and their perspectives. 

Your child may not become part of those heavy conversations for a while, but giving them the option will give them the freedom to make informed decisions on where they stand on certain issues without Western bias. A 2010 Gallup poll found that 52% of Arabs in the US had experienced discrimination and xenophobia in the last year. This was higher than any other racial demographic that was polled. Adjacently, less than half (32%) of Americans held favorable views of Arabs and Arabic culture. In a post-9/11 world, Middle Easterners need all the understanding they can get. Set your child up to see the world as it really is; not in black and white. 

Through language, they’ll gain insights into the political history, militarization of certain regions, religious beliefs, economy, and traditions of many Arabic-speaking areas. Islam is the second most practiced religion worldwide, though it is largely debated and misrepresented, for better or worse. It is the framework behind many governing bodies and societies, and your child will be able to bridge the gap between Western and Middle Eastern ideologies, forming curated perspectives that ring true to them based on a wide variety of factors and perspectives. 

Your child will get to enjoy the staples of Arabic pop culture as well! They’ll enjoy beautiful artists like Amr Diab and Nancy Ajram singing profound lyrics and weaving beautiful stories. They’ll get to experience cinematic phenomenons like West Beirut, Al-Mummia, and Theeb, to name a few. They’ll explore literature classics like One Thousand and One Nights/Arabian Nights, Honor, and, of course, The Qur’an. This exposure will be responsible for their reference points in life, giving them more areas of experience and perceptions to draw from. 

Arabic culture holds some of the most ancient and prevalent influences on the world at large. Understanding its history and affluence is key to understanding all other cultures and societies as well. Much of the Western civilization is built on international exchange, immigration, and inspiration from the Middle East. 

#Soulfully

Arab speakers are proud of their ancient heritage. When they hear others making the effort to communicate with them in their native tongue, they are automatically disarmed and appreciative. They are happy to show off their language and culture, rewarding anyone trying to learn from them or relate to them. Beautiful friendships and connections can be made from such efforts and rewards. 

Your child will grow up to be able to travel to some of the most beautiful Arabic-speaking places on earth, including Egypt, Morocco, Lebanon, and Israel, to name a few. These locations hold rich and haunting histories, delicious food, and breathtaking scenery. Don’t even get us started on the architecture and resilient people. 

Arab people are historically some of the most tenacious communities, overcoming harsh conditions like prolonged droughts, elemental exposure, invasion, etc, while remaining tender and gracious. They’re hospitable and kind people, even while under tense governing conditions and oppressive forces. It’s impossible to visit these places and commune with these people without becoming a more whole person. 

Who wouldn’t want these things for their children?

You would do anything to help your children and make sure they get the best support and education possible. You can start the journey with Bilingual Bebe to learn Arabic online for kids who deserve a leg up in the world and a rich connection to their heritage. Qualified experts, friendly classmates, and a comprehensive program are what sets us apart from apps and stuffy classrooms! What are you waiting for? Check them out. You’ll get customized classes that fit your child’s needs. 

You’ll receive progress reports and open communication networks with the other parents, useful for setting up real-life playdates for more Arabic practice, and in providing support and relatability for you. Help Bilingual Bebe take some weight off your shoulders, nurturing your child’s natural curiosity and bringing a fun and structured curriculum right to your home.

Check out our program to learn Arabic online for kids here

As we all know, there’s no perfect way to be a parent and there are many different parenting styles to chose from. 

Although there are many different techniques that you can come across that could work for your family, today we will be discussing some French parenting techniques. These techniques are considered to be a “non-nonsense” type of parenting style that is full of love and appreciation. 

These French parenting techniques may not be the perfect way to raise a child, but it is definitely a parenting style that we can all learn a few things from. 

Let your children do difficult things

French parenting

Children love to explore and try new things. One of the best thing that you can let your child do is to let them discover new things on their own (or at least with some parental supervision). In general, French parents focuses a lot on treating children like “adults-in-training” rather than just children who need constant guidance and interference. 

According to the American writer, Pamela Druckerman, an American mother who lived in France and noted the differences in parenting styles in her book Bringing up Bébé, the French encourage autonomy. French parenting focuses on letting their children feel confident and capable of doing things for themselves. This concept helps children mature a bit faster as they can practice new things and make mistakes while they are young. 

Of course, you can mix a batch of chocolate chip cookies dough much faster than your children – you’ve had a lot of practice. But, if you’re taking over and doing things the faster way, this won’t encourage your children to learn for themselves. Children are capable of learning to do difficult things, but they may need to be shown extra patience. 

Teach your children to sleep well from an early age

French babies don’t learn to sleep through the night just by nature – instead, they are taught.

In order for parents to avoid exhaustion, especially as new parents adjusting to their new stage in life with children, they need proper sleep (and so does their baby!). French parents focus on something called “the pause.”  The pause is quite literally a pause. When babies cry during their sleep, you need to allow them to pause and let them attempt to self soothe before you rush to the rescue. 

All humans have different sleep stages and this is no different for children. When infants are put to sleep, they do not instantly fall into a deep sleep. In fact, they wake up multiple times for very brief moments. Just as you may “wake up” to toss and turn a few times at the beginning of your sleep cycle, infants “wake up” and make noises. 

If you allow your infant some space to toss, turn, or make noise in their early sleep cycle, you’re giving them the chance to fall back into a deeper sleep instead of completely disrupting the sleep cycle. By learning to self soothe, children will learn to not depend on pacifiers, hugs and kisses, singing, rocking, and bottles to fall asleep and stay asleep. 

Teach them to say “hello”

French parenting

In the French culture, children are not granted a “pass” on saying hello to everyone in the room. Just because they are shy or young does not mean that they are any less of a person. Children are supposed to acknowledge everyone’s existence and say hello to adults, teens, and other children alike. Adults would not get a “pass” on greeting others, so they do not teach children that it’s acceptable to avoid greetings only to unlearn that behavior as they grow. 

A polite hello (or bonjour) is a major part of the French culture. In social settings and business settings alike, the lack of a greeting is seen as rude. Even when you enter a shop, it’s very normal to greet the workers with a friendly hello and unfriendly if you stay silent. 

Learning these social manners at a young age will benefit children throughout their whole life. This is also a great way for children to develop self-confidence from a young age. A small greeting goes a long way.

Encourage them to be resilient

Children are going to encounter some difficult experiences in life, whether they want to or not. The fact is, some rough experiences are a part of life and the best thing to do in these situations is to learn from them. 

French parents understand that although it may be unpleasant, going to the doctor, visiting the dentist, getting flu shots, experiencing failure, etc. are a part of life. In France, you won’t find any doctors or dentists saying “sorry” for the slight discomfort because they want children to understand that they cannot avoid certain things. As children learn to deal with hurt, they grow into stronger and more resilient humans. 

In the same sense, failure is an unpleasant experience. However, the French understand that it is going to happen, and you need to let it happen. A failed opportunity is one of the best learning opportunities that any child can have! At the same time, your children will also learn great problem-solving skills. 

Feed your children the same thing that the adults are eating. 

French Parenting

The French take their food very seriously, and children are no exception to this standard. 

French children are expected to eat the same thing that adults are eating. It is not a common practice to find adults cooking their children completely separate meals like pizza, chicken nuggets, or pasta. All members of the family typically eat the same meal and children enjoy their meal in smaller quantities. 

Although children may have their preferences of food, they are still expected to eat what everyone else at the table is eating. This includes traditional French dishes that you might think are for a more developed pallet like dried sausages, foie gras, shrimp, tartare, different types of vegetables, and of course cheese.

Structure mealtimes

The French typically don’t have too much trouble with their children not wanting to eat during mealtimes. This is because the French don’t encourage snacking on a regular basis. For children, there is one snack time (le goûter) and 3 meals per day. 

This tactic encourages children to wait for their meals and develop a healthy dose of hunger, so they will be able to eat their meals at structured times. This also helps children develop patience and train their stomachs to not be dependent on food to regulate their emotions/moods for instant gratification. Instead of offering snacks to children during a slight inconvenience, French children taught to wait. 

Avoid over-praising your children 

Americans have earned themselves a notorious reputation for awarding trophies for participation. Despite your opinions on this style of encouragement and parenting, the French have quite a different outlook. 

While American parents have a habit of praising their child for the smallest situations, French parents use their praises more sparingly in hopes of not creating an expectation of praise in every situation. When children are praised, they feel a great sense of confidence, pride, and happiness. They will know something that they did is exceptionally good, not just something that is expected of them. French parents like to praise children for doing something unique and extraordinary, instead throwing around praise at every turn.

Maintain your own identity after having children

In the French culture, parents still maintain their interests, dedication to fashion, and friendships after having children. Having children is a blessing and one of the most joyous things on the planet, but becoming a parent doesn’t mean that you have to lose a sense of self identity. 

In some cultures, it’s very common for the parents (especially the mothers), to identify themselves only as a parent as if it is their job. Although there is nothing wrong with being a dedicated parent, some parents tend to lose time for themselves, their own interests, and their friends. 

The French typically try to maintain their sense of balance in life. They love the part of their life that is being a parent, but they also love to keep up with their personal life, professional life, and goals. 

Carve out time for you and your partner

Carve out sometime dedicated to you and your partner. Children learn that the parents are not only around to serve the children at every constant moment, but that they are their own people as well. This technique creates some level of distance between adults and children and shows them the importance of showing undivided attention to your other half.

Some parents are insistent upon spending every moment with their children. However, French parents make sure that they have some separate adult time away from their children. Although this may come along with some guilt of separation, it lessens the chance of burnout and stress when parenting. 

Parents have their own interests, their own relationships, and need their time as adults respected and encouraged by their children. This is a very French outlook that also teaches children more independence and to respect other people’s time and boundaries.   

Let your “no” mean “no” 

Have you ever said “no” to your child and then decided later to change your mind due to some consistent pleading, negotiations, or tantrums? Most likely the answer here is yes. But, in the French culture, parents are much more likely to stand firm in their “no.” 

When French parents say no, they mean it. Although this can be very difficult at first, it’s much better to endure tantrums and pleading for a short while instead of dealing with it for multiple years. This teaches children to respect words and instructions from adults, especially their parents and understand that not everything that they want will happen.

Let your yes mean yes, and your no mean no.

Let your child learn from trial and error

Have you ever heard of the term “helicopter” parenting? A helicopter parent is someone who “hovers” over their child (like a helicopter) and is extremely involved in different aspects of their child’s life. While French parents are typically involved and interested in their children’s lives, they are not interested in controlling it. 

The French really like to see their children learn things by trial and error. This includes all the simple things in life like letting them make age appropriate decisions about their time, hobbies, and after school activities. 

Respect family time 

Screen time at dinner? This is something you will never see during a meal with a French family. 

The absence of conversation and the presence of texting while eating is not a reality in the French world and not a habit they’re likely to adopt anytime soon. The French tend to encourage family time, especially at the dinner table where they can all have a chance to catch up about their days and have uninterrupted communication. 

Encourage playtime 

French Parenting

What is the highlight of a child’s day, sitting down in a classroom at school or letting loose during playtime? Playtime, of course! 

A long school day seems like almost an eternity to little kids. Sitting still, being quiet, and being in a structured environment for almost 8 hours a day is a lot to ask for. 

When it’s playtime, it’s a great idea to encourage your child to go all out and have fun. They are always full of energy and will love to burn it off, run around, and just have fun. The French believe that playtime is a great way to use energy, and at the same time it stimulates the brain and makes it easier to focus during their structured learning time. 

French Parenting Style

Now you’ve had an inside look at the typical ways that French families parent. Although there are not “one size fits all” rules for parenting and every family will have their own unique takes on these techniques, this list provides you with the basics.

Interested in learning more about the French culture? Take a look at these few articles to get started: 

It’s never too early to introduce a new language to your children, but the task can be incredibly daunting for you and dry for them. How do you keep them engaged while keeping you sane? Where do you start? Luckily there are some tricks that will help them learn Arabic.

Starting Out

The best time to learn a new language is young, right around the time they’re learning their primary language. Children aged 2-15 are like sponges, and the younger they begin, the more retention and fluency they’ll have. Kids learn languages more efficiently than adults for a number of reasons:

  • They aren’t scared of failure or embarrassment. For some reason, as we grow, we become more apprehensive about trying new things for fear we may look foolish while getting the hang of it. Kids have no such inhibitions and happen to enjoy looking silly. 
  • Their lessons are tailored in a more fun and engaging way than the adult curriculum. It’s likely we’d learn almost just as well if we got to sing songs and play immersive games rather than conjugating verbs on blackboards for hours. 
  • Their brains are creating tons of new neural pathways with lots of elasticity, whereas our pathways are set more rigidly within the confines of the language we’ve become so accustomed to speaking. Their magical stretchy brains allow for adaptation to new grammatical rules, accents, and physiological habits since the pathways aren’t solidifying in any one direction yet. 

The underlying trick to get it to stick is consistent routine and fun. Practice practice practice. Now, while absorption rates are higher in children, attention spans are lower. Kids are learning to multitask, but the function is on overdrive as they discover new interesting aspects of the world constantly for the first time. Distractions are abundant and overstimulating, causing them to lose focus on the task at hand. Researchers estimate that a child’s attention span maxes out at roughly 3x their age. For example:  

2 y o= 4-6 mins,

4 y o= 8-12 mins,

6 y o= 12-18 mins,

And so on. This means one must curate a curriculum that breaks learning the language into digestible and enticing chunks. 

When starting out, try to prioritize teaching common language rather than slang, niche topics, or complex dialogue. Start with what you need most and work outwards. There will be tough moments but patience and praise is key. Remembering your mutual goals and acknowledging how far they’ve progressed will help keep everyone motivated and focused. 

Learning Arabic

Being multilingual comes with many advantages in both the external world and the internal cognitive function of the brain. Not only will your child get more job opportunities and test better in school, but they’ll also make more connections with perspectives from around the world and increase their brain power. Being bilingual increases creativity, flexibility, multitasking, memory (holding off things like Alzheimer’s and Dementia), attention, problem-solving, and can become the stepping stone to an easier path in learning a third language.

They’ll enjoy traveling with ease, expanding literary and cultural knowledge, and will generally become better communicators and company. Who wouldn’t want these things for their children?

Most parents who want their children to learn Arabic are first-generation immigrants who want to infuse their culture into their hybrid home. Their children are likely learning English first, and it may feel like they don’t have ties to their roots. Ready to embrace their heritage but often busy trying to raise a family and keep up with work, they may seek out efficient and flexible methods to teach Arabic to their children. Sound like your family dynamic? Here’s where the tricks and tips come in. 

Make Learning Arabic Easy for Kids

Kids are still kids at the end of the day, so they’ll only devote attention to something that’s made appealing and immersive to them. Try these tactics when learning Arabic for kids. 

Make Songs

Making just about anything into music and rhyme is a surefire way to get it to stick in the brain. “Music activates both the left and right brain at the same time, and the activation of both hemispheres can maximize learning and improve memory”, claims a study done by Florida National University. This will be especially effective for children who adore music and nursery rhymes. The tempo allows for slower pronunciation, the rhymes create associations that trigger a memory response, and the whimsy of it all keeps them interested and focused. 

Much like parentese helps babies develop their primary language and intonation, music does the same. The exaggerated vowels, repetition, and varying tempos/pitches keep the shortest of attention spans in babies & kids going. They remain interested in the unpredictability of what will come next (as opposed to the flatter lineation of speech). Repetition, association, and charm for the win.

Leverage Gamification

Kids just want to have fun! Making anything possible into a game, much like a song, will keep them captivated and challenged. Trick them into thinking they’re not learning. Fun language games can be “word of the day” traditions, Arabic role play, and finding cognates (cognates are common root words and meanings between the primary language and the one being learned in order to make associations with our already familiar neural pathways. Arabic-English cognate examples can be found here). Playing word games like Scrabble, Articulate, or crosswords can be a great way to develop that out-of-box thinking they need to step into their learned language. 

Get Apps

On that same note, game apps like Words With Friends or language-centred learning apps like Duolingo can be the way to go. Kids love the screens for some reason. This may keep them engaged more than a newspaper crossword or live song – and that’s okay. They’re learning valuable skills while having fun.

Other apps like Memrise, Babbel, and Rosetta Stone, Little Pim, Gus On The Go, to name a few, may be the right format for your child since every kid learns differently. Some will use more visual appeal, while others are more auditory. Some are free, and others have a monthly fee. It’s just about exploring what’s right for your family. 

Engage their Senses

Finding out how your child learns best is a great place to start when strategizing your focus exercises. It’s still useful, however, to immerse each of their senses sometimes, regardless of a primary learning style. Language curriculums should be auditory, visual (reading and written), and verbal. Watching movies in Arabic is a great way for your kids to connect body language & mannerisms with words & meaning while observing subtle mouth movements and speech styles. It’ll keep them engaged more than a workbook will as well. 

Inserting Arabic stories into the bedtime routine or picking up chapter books with playful plots will prove to be yet another great way, just like with movies, that context clues can help create meaningful associations without having to pick up a dictionary every 2 minutes. The storyline will draw them in, helping their minds fill in the blanks of the words they don’t know. They’ll subconsciously pick up the patterns as words repeat in similar sentence subjects, further validating their imposed meaning with a more specific and accurate one. Don’t underestimate the ability to hone in on nuance, especially with kids, who are extremely receptive. 

Immerse Them in the Culture

You’ve heard of eat, pray, love? Try eat, breathe, and sleep the language. The more your children are around fluent speakers, Arabic writing, and Arabic culture, the more they’ll subconsciously pick it up. People are wired to make connections with other humans as efficiently and effectively as possible, mimicking them to provide comfort and relatability. If possible, try travelling to an Arabic-speaking country and spending some time there with the kids. Or, if the older members of your household speak Arabic, speak it more often at home to your kids. 

Get Them a Practice Pal

Finding an Arabic pen pal who can also have fluent verbal conversations with your child can be so helpful. Engaging in active conversation is different from formal written formats and will help add a natural native accent and linguistic style to their speech. Find someone who can hold them accountable for their practice, putting to use what they learned that day, so it’s more likely to stick. They’ll then become affluent in useful everyday phrases and questions.

Join a Holistic Program 

Do these helpful strategies still sound like more than you, a parent with very limited time and resources, can take on every day? Try enrolling your child in a program that includes all of these fun and effective strategies, like Bilingual Bebe. A holistic approach is going to be the most effective tactic. 

The Bilingual Bebe Program

Bilingual Bebe is an online language learning program for kids aged 3-12 that creates a unique classroom experience with a proprietary curriculum built by certified language experts. Your child can learn arabic online with a handful of other kids and a skilled certified native linguistic teacher. They’ll sing songs, play games, learn letters & sounds, do activities, learn math, read books, etc. – all in Arabic. You’ll find yourself in a community of other parents and children wanting to socialize and practice the language together.

Other parents have nothing but great things to say about their Bilingual Bebe experience. One says, “I have tried many language classes for kids, and this is the best! The curriculum is well thought through, the teachers are really engaged, and the classroom experience is unique. My 8-year-old loves it and has made so much progress in only one month. Highly recommend Bilingual Bebe’s bilingual education program!”. 

Another client reports, “I am so happy to have found this amazing program! My son enjoys his classes and is engaged and connected with the teachers and his peers. He has learned so much and is progressing so well. The teachers are attentive, energetic and caring”.

The Bilingual Bebe curriculum is consistent with the Arabic Preschool and Elementary School immersion programs for early learners. The certified teachers are very qualified native speakers who are trained in early education. Bilingual Bebe was founded by certified foreign language experts & childhood educators, so they maintain those standards within their curated programming. You’ll get progress reports regularly, so you can see that your child is thriving and committed to the lesson plans. 

Bilingual Bebe takes the load off you while providing your child with structure, a routine for learning and ties to their roots. Being bilingual is such an advantage in a world where being an immigrant can still come with many disadvantages. Instilling a second (or third – who’s counting?) language into your kids will open up many opportunities in life for them while enriching their minds and cultural understanding. They’ll appreciate it when they’re older, even if they rebel against it a bit now. 

Language rebellion is a totally normal response to the introduction of a new language. Kids may hold onto their primary language in an assertion of their original identity and individualism while trying to fit in with classmates. This often fades as they come to enjoy the freedoms bilingualism brings. This is also the reason why Bilingual Bebe’s program believes in learning with peers and friends sharing similar background and willingness to learn the language. This unique classroom experience triggers interest and engagement in kids that would most likely be more challenging otherwise.

Outside the classes, you can help them by encouraging both languages, highlighting the importance of communication in real-life situations, and remaining patient and open to compromise. This will allow them to feel more agency over their lives and decide on their own to make peace with this new change. Soon it will become another thing that makes them special and dynamic.

Conclusion

Do yourselves both a favor and enroll in Bilingual Bebe now. Your children will thank you later. Qualified experts, friendly classmates, and a comprehensive program are waiting for your family to join in. Check them out here. You’ll get customized classes that fit your child’s needs. 

Learning a second language as a child can give your kids the best foot forward as they step into their future. There’s no better language to learn as a second language than Spanish. Why is this? That’s what we’re here to tell you. 

There are many important reasons to learn Spanish as a child, and we will only go over a few. Wherever you are and whatever the future holds for your child – learning Spanish is important for giving them the best opportunities in life, understanding and growing in their cultural identity, and much more. 

Why Is Spanish Important to Learn for Children? 

Spanish is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. In fact, with 548 million speakers, Spanish is ranked as the 4th most commonly spoken language after English, Mandarin Chinese, and Hindi. In terms of only native speakers, Spanish is the second-biggest language. This is thanks to 21 different countries proudly having it as their official language. 

If you live in the United States, Spanish is becoming increasingly more popular. Even though it’s not an official language, the United States has the second-highest population of Spanish speakers in the world

Spanish is becoming more popular every year and will continue to grow from here on out. After seeing some statistics, you’re beginning to understand why it’s important for children to learn Spanish. In the content below, we will gladly guide you through 9 other significant points that show just how important it is for children to learn Spanish. 

1. Early Language-Development Skills

A common mistake is waiting until your child is older to begin introducing them to Spanish. The best time for children to learn Spanish is as early as possible. This is because children have an amazing brain capacity for early language development. 

Language learning is a unique skill that helps children innately pick up a language by consistent exposure. Words, phrases, and ideas make more sense to them the younger they are. As they are learning to already process one language, their brain’s language development techniques are sharp. Furthermore, the brain is flexible enough to perform these techniques in two languages at the same time. 

Think of the brain as a giant muscle. The more you exercise a muscle, the stronger it gets. Exercising one group of muscles can also have a positive impact on other muscle groups of the body at the same rate. This same principle applies to your brain. The more that this muscle is “trained,” the better it will perform overall. By heavily exercising the language development part of the brain right away, the brain can also be stimulated in other areas. Other skills like communication, memory, concentration, curiosity, and creativity are greatly influenced by language development.

2. Multi-Cultural Diversity

Learning a second language is more than just learning how to speak, listen, read, and write. Language learning is all the more fun when culture is involved. While learning Spanish, there are many opportunities to learn about different cultures and become more culturally diverse! Although there are 21 countries that share Spanish as a common language, they all have their own unique characteristics that are worth learning about.

Fútbol (soccer), dance, art, food, family, celebrations, and history are all very important overarching topics to learn about in each Spanish-speaking region. Here are a few vibrant examples of culture from different Spanish-speaking countries that can be enjoyed while learning:

  • Fútbol: The World Cup, Messi’s legendary skills, Real Madrid and Barcelona’s Rivalry, and La Copa Libertatodores
  • Dance: Spanish Flamenco, Cuban Salsa, and Argentinian Tango
  • Food: Spicy Mexican Salsa, Spanish tapas and paellas, Latin American Empanadas, and the history of chocolate (cacao) 
  • Family: family structure and dynamics in different cultures
  • Celebrations: The day of the dead, quinceañeras, independence days, and traditions for common holidays
  • Influential People: Simón Bolívar, Bartolomé de las Casas, and the Pope Francis
  • Art and Music: Salvador Dalí, Selena Quintanilla, Pablo Picasso, and Shakira
  • Indigenous Culture: Mayans and Aztecs, Quechua, Pyramids in Mexico, Spanish Conquistadors

This list just breaks the surface level of all the rich culture that there is to discover about people and history from all different cultures. Learning about culture can be a very immersive and enjoyable way to enhance learning a second language! By looking into different countries, your child will definitely become very well-versed in different cultures and learn how to appreciate them. 

3. Career Placement

Being fluent in another language gives you a big competitive advantage in the job field. Although this isn’t an immediate concern for young children, they’ll be grateful that their parents understood the importance of teaching them Spanish at a young age. 

The ability to be able to perform a job in two languages equally will double their chances in the future of finding a career and having stability. Especially if they decide to work in an international company, live near a community of Spanish speakers, or work with clients from other countries– they will be glad to have an open door to communicate with more people! 

4. Travel Opportunities

As Spanish is spoken in 21 different countries as an official language, speaking this language even at a moderate level can be very advantageous when traveling. 

Traveling is much easier and stress-free if you speak the local language enough to order food, ask for directions, and even communicate with the locals. Talking to locals and reading information of things to do for the habitants of that country can give you the inside scoop to make your trip more memorable and unique. Not only is traveling great for connecting with other Spanish speakers, this will also expose you to different accents and phrases that are used in different countries. 

From the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador, to Machu Picchu in Peru, to the beautiful beaches of Spain– there are many beautiful places to visit in each and every Spanish-speaking country. They are all worthy of a trip! The ease of traveling is yet another great reason to learn Spanish. 

5. Other Language Learning Becomes Easier

Spanish originates from the roots of the Latin language. This means that other Latin based languages will be much easier to learn based on sentence structure, grammar, syntax, common alphabet, and vocabulary. French, Italian, Portuguese, and Romanian originally come from Latin roots. Having knowledge of Spanish makes these languages simpler to pick up on because you will already have the basic concept of the root language grasped. 

Learning an additional language in the future will also help your child really understand and strength a language that is already in your repertoire. You never know what other languages will interest your child as they grow, and this will help give them a better chance to quickly become fluent in third language (or multiple!). 

6. Spanish resources are easy to find

As Spanish is a widely spoken language, there are a lot of useful resources to help make learning fun. 

Thanks to the wide use of the internet and globalization of technology, there are a lot of resources like movies, TV shoes, books, and even language classes available for you and your child. 

With all the resources, it may even be a bit too overwhelming to find the best resources for your child to enjoy learning. For starters, here is a list of some great Spanish resources:

Imagine having the opportunity to find interests in double the amount of books, double the amount of singers, and double the amount of movies! By teaching your child’s a second language, they can enjoy another world of humor, movies, jokes, and stories. 

7. Bilingual Children Perform Better in School 

Another important reason to learn Spanish is a child is the improved learning capacity. Learning a second language develops the brain in a more efficient way because it is trained to work differently. Some studies suggest that taking languages classes increases the brain’s capacity to pay attention, memorize things quickly, and focus on details. These skills learned subconsciously help the overall brain productivity increase. Imagine your child only needed to look over information once or twice to commit it to memory instead of needing to stay up for hours at a time cramming for a test. This is really going to prepare them for their future and save them time and optimize their time overall learning!

8. Connects them to their origin and ancestors’ culture

If you or anyone in your family has roots tying them to Central America, South America, or Spain, your child will have a deeper connection to these origins by learning the language. A language is not only just words and sounds, but it also conveys an entire culture while it’s being used. 

The relationship between language and culture is so intertwined, it’s highly complex to separate them. This is why some phrases, idioms, and cultural concepts don’t even exist in some languages and word for word translations don’t always work out. For example, you cannot word for word translate “Do you like it?” in from English to Spanish, because the literal translation is “Is it pleasing to you?” (AKA ¿te gusta?). This is just a simple example proving this point, but there are many more complex ideas and concepts that do not translate word for word based on cultural differences. 

An example of a concept is the level of respect and way of showing it. In Spanish, you have two different conjugations for all verbs and subjects that are used to convey a certain level of respect and distance yourself from the other person. Although you can show a great deal of respect in English by using “ma’am” and “sir” while speaking, it’s quite different to use different verb conjugations to convey this concept. By learning the language, you will subconsciously also pick up on the culture. 

It’s important to be proud of your roots and where your family came from – learning Spanish is key to making this happen for your child.

9. Connect with other communities and make new friends

If your children learn to speak Spanish inside the United States, they will be able to communicate with over 41 million Spanish-speakers– that’s a big community! This creates a lot of opportunities for your children to build friendships in Spanish, join the local soccer team, play with other children at the park, and be ready for encounters with other Spanish speakers all over town. Creating lasting friendships and building a strong community are great reasons to learn Spanish as a child.

How to Get Your Child Started Speaking Spanish? 

If you are living in a country where Spanish is not the native language, it may get a bit difficult to stick to learning. In addition to at home conversations with just parents, sometimes kids need an extra jump start to really dive into their learning. 

By enrolling in online classes for your child (ages 3-12), you have the convenience of a class based on your schedule and the comfort of knowing that your child is receiving lessons from a professional. The best part? Group classes are fun! Bilingual Bebe offers your child a great program to help them become bilingual Spanish speakers and have a blast while doing it.

Reading books is a great way for bilingual children to let their imagination run free and build a vocabulary at the same time. 

Bilingual children have the advantage of learning words and phrases in two languages, getting familiar with two different cultures, hearing many new sounds, and being able to enjoy the same story twice. While story time alone won’t provide your child with enough language exposure to become fluent, it will surely add new words to their vocabulary and new sounds to their repertoire. 

Spanish and English bilingual books are the most readily available, bilingual books on the market. Because both languages need to fit inside the same book, there are two different writing styles that you should be aware of. If you have a preference of bilingual writing style, be sure to select your child’s books accordingly. 

Some bilingual children’s books offer side by side language comparisons, while other books mix the two languages at the same time. Depending on your child’s level of fluency and ability to distinguish two languages, you can take two approaches to reading the books with side by side translations. 

If your child may need a little more help recognizing the difference between two languages and separating meaning, the best approach is to read the book once through in one language and read it through a second time in the other. This will help create a consistent thought pattern inside their brains to help them develop complete ideas without code switching languages mid-thought. If your bilingual child can already clearly distinguish the difference between their two languages, a fun activity would be reading the side by side comparisons of each translation to look for some differences in the flow of speech and word choice for describing the same scene. 

Whether they are reading alongside you or listening to the content orally and looking at the pictures, this will be a critical step in their language development. 

We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite bilingual books for kids that we know your bilingual children will love. Take a look below and let your child chose the bilingual book that interests them the most. 

1. ¡Te amo, te abrazo, leo contigo! / Love You, Hug You, Read to You! by Tish Rabe

What are the three best things that children can hear from their parents? “I will always love you, hug you and read to you.” This bilingual book for kids encourages interaction while reading by including short questions for your child. One of the best ways to help children improve their comprehension level is to ask them questions along the way. Thankfully, Tish Rabe is fully aware of this and provides an all around great story book to enhance your child’s reading and language comprehension!

Ages: 0 – 3 

Buy it here: Amazon

2. Huggy Kissy / Abrazos y besitos by Leslie Patricelli

Grab this books and snuggle up with your child and the rest of your family to dive into a sweet and fun story about showing love. What’s not to love with this bilingual board book?  Leslie Patricelli creates an irresistibly affectionate Spanish-English book that your little will be sure to enjoy.

Ages: 0 – 3 

Buy it here: Amazon

3. Vamos a jugar (Let’s Play, Spanish-English Bilingual Edition) by Leo Lionni

Let’s Play/ Vamos a Jugar is a great board book introduces your child to familiar words used for play time in both English and Spanish. Follow along as Leo Lionnni tells the tale of two mice who learn to play together and find some fun things to do! 

Ages: 0 – 3 

Buy it here: Amazon

4. The Very Hungry Caterpillar / La oruga muy hambrienta by Eric Carle

This classic is available in side by side English and Spanish. Thanks to Eric Carle, you and your little one can enjoy the light-hearted short story of a very hungry caterpillar and see what is on the menu! 

Ages: 2 – 5 

Buy it here: Amazon

5. Cerca / Close by Juan Felipe Herrera

As two companions begin to notice the world around them, they begin to realize what is close / cerca and what is far / lejos. Juan Felipe Herrera writes an engaging story of children’s observations in a simplistic, colorful, and charming way. 

Ages: 2 – 5 

Buy it here: Amazon

6. The Day of the Dead / El Día de los Muertos by Bob Barner

Bob Barner introduces a cheerful and important cultural holiday in multiple Spanish-speaking countries – The Day of the Dead! This book allows you to tag along as two children learn all about the preparation to greet their ancestors and to celebrate their lifetime with their close family members. 

Ages: 2 – 5 

Buy it here: Amazon

7. Señorita Mariposa by Ben Gundersheimer (Mister G)

In this rhyming bilingual children’s book you can have a front row seat to follow the fantastic migration journey that monarch butterflies make each year from Canada to Mexico. This child-friendly book filled with bright colors and vibrant illustrations is the perfect for you and your little one to activate your imaginations to travel across countries without leaving your own home. 

Ages: 3 – 5 

Buy it here: Amazon

8. The Feelings Book / El libro de los sentimientos by Todd Parr

This bilingual book for kids is a true treasure for kids and parents alike. Todd Parr gives children and parents a go-to picture book specially written to help little ones describe their feelings in both English and Spanish. Not only is this a great read full of bright colors, it’s a great resource for building emotional-intelligence and creating a strong vocabulary at a young age!

Ages: 3 – 6

Buy it here: Amazon

9. The Cat in the Hat Beginner Book Dictionary in Spanish by P.D. Eastman

Who doesn’t love a classic doctor Seuss story? Thanks to P.D. Eastman, you and your child can enjoy a colorful picture book filled with eye catching, short sentences in English and Spanish. Each main word is enhanced with a visual representation on the page and is accompanied by a translation. Looking for even more? This book includes a free dictionary that acts as a pronunciation guide to help in oral language production. 

Ages: 3 – 7

Buy it here: Amazon

10. La Princesa and the Pea by Susan Middleton Elya

This rhyming bilingual children’s book put a fun twist on a cherished classic. You and your little one are sure to be enchanted by these Peruvian inspired illustrations as you set out on an adventure with a beloved príncipe who chooses to follow his heart and go after his perfect match.

Ages: 4 – 8

Buy it here: Amazon

11. Sing With Me / Canta conmigo by Jose-Luis Orozco

Looking for some songs to sing? Look no further and get your hands on this beautifully illustrated, bilingual song book filled with six delightful songs that you and your little one are sure to love. Practice your singing skills in English and Spanish with side by side translations– now you’ll have double the songs to sing!

Ages: 4 – 8

Buy it here: Amazon

12. We Laugh Alike / Juntos nos reímos by Carmen T. Bernier-Grand

Carmen T. Barnier-Grand tells a common story of two young friend groups who want to play together even though they don’t speak the same language. This bilingual book trades back and forth between English and Spanish within the same conversation, so both groups of children are equally understood. See how these children can surpass their language barrier to still have loads of fun!

Ages: 5 – 8

Buy it here: Amazon

13. Quinito’s Neighborhood / El Vecindario de Quinito by Ina Cumpiano

Take a stroll down Quinitos Neighborhood and discover vibrant illustrations of charming buildings, colorful shops, and all the beautiful people that Quinito knows and loves. You and your little one will take a great adventure with Quinito and learn all about his family and their different jobs that make the community thrive.

Ages: 5 – 8

Buy it here: Amazon

14. Isabel and Her Colores Go to School (English and Spanish Edition) by Alexandra Alessandri

It’s time to set off on an adventure with Isabel – her first day at a new school! Some kids get very excited and others, like Isabel, are very nervous for their first day – why is that, you ask? Isabel doesn’t speak English quite yet, but wants to make new friends. Follow along as Isabel tries her best to break this language barrier and creates her own means of communication through her artwork. 

Ages: 5 – 8

Buy it here: Amazon

15. Bilingual Fairy Tales in Spanish and English: A Story Collection by Charles Perrault, James Planché, and Teodoro Baró y Sureda

This fairy tale book is perfect for bilingual children of all ages. With a collection of classic stories in English and Spanish, this modernized book complete with a free audio download is sure to become your child’s favorite! 

Ages: All

Buy it here: Amazon

Why Bilingual Books for Kids are Key to Bilingual Proficiency

Bilingual children of all ages are sponges for new information. By reading these bilingual books at your next story time with your little one, their language level is sure to improve in both Spanish and English at the same time. 

Stories are one of the best ways for children to have new experiences and understand unique concepts without having to experience things for themselves. The constant exposure to new words and imaginative journeys will help them become very well-rounded and versed in multiple subjects. 

Whether you are a native English speaker looking for bilingual books in Spanish or a Spanish native speaker looking for bilingual books in English, these stories will be a great place to start. 

Simple Ways to Learn a Second Language at Home

Get resources and tips to help supplement your bilingual education journey at home.

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