¡Hola! {Book Review + Author Interview}

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Happy Friday, amig@s! The weekend is here, and for me that means more time to READ! If you’re like me, always looking for a good book to read (both for yourself and for your children), then you’ll love today’s post.

Author and former language teacher, Judy Martialay, sent me a copy of her children’s book ¡Hola! Let’s Learn Spanish a few weeks ago, and the minute I got my hands on it, I knew I wanted to share it with you all.

Designed to introduce children between the ages of six and 11 to the Spanish language and Hispanic culture, this book would make a great addition to your home library. Here’s what I love about it:

  1. Child-focused and friendly – Although it’s meant to teach children basic Spanish words, phrases, and cultural knowledge, it’s written in a way that you, the parent, could simply give it to your child to read on her own. There are colorful illustrations, craft ideas, and a fun story of cultural exploration and adventure (meet Pete the Pilot and Panchito!).
  2. Designed for the non-native speaker of Spanish – I can already think of several non-native Spanish-speaking family friends of mine who I’d love to pass this book on to, families that are eager to expose their children to introductory Spanish. I would feel totally comfortable giving this book to these parents (who don’t speak the language themselves) because it presents the language in a natural and non-threatening way. For example, the story about Pete the Pilot and Panchito is written in 90% English with one or two Spanish words sprinkled throughout each paragraph.
  3. Culturally sensitive – It’s clear that Judy took her time to research México, the culture highlighted in the book. There is a section entitled Rincón Cultural, in which she explains in clear, child-friendly language the type of Spanish used, typical food, customs, and celebrations.

And, of course, behind every book is an author. Judy graciously agreed to tell us a bit about her professional background, experience raising bilingual children, and why she believes every child should learn a second language.

Read on, amig@s, and be encouraged!

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Raising trilingual children {Family Fridays – an update}

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(Photo via Carissa Rogers, Flickr CC)

¡Feliz viernes, amig@s! We’re back with another edition of Family Fridays here on the blog, a series in which I highlight a different multilingual family from around the globe.

I’m so happy to have back again my dear friend J.K., whose family was the first to be interviewed for this series over a year ago. Originally from Korea, she and her American husband are raising their two (soon to be three!) children in three languages while living as expats in China. You can catch her first interview here.

Today, she gives us an update on her family’s language policy, shares challenges she and her husband have experienced in their six years raising trilingual children, and provides encouragement for families in a similar situation.

Be encouraged, friends!

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“Keep your eye on the prize!” {Family Fridays}

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(Photo via Carissa Rogers, Flickr CC)

Friends, it’s great to be back again in 2016 for another edition of “Family Fridays” here on the blog. This is a continuing series in which I interview different multilingual families from all over the world. I love this series because each family interviewed has something unique and encouraging to share with readers; it’s been a reminder that there are so many ways to approach bilingual parenting.

To kick off the first “Family Fridays” interview of the year, I’d like to introduce you to Diana Limongi from the blog LadydeelLG. She’s a self-described Latina New Yorker with Ecuadorian roots married to a Frenchman. They live with their young son, Enzo, in the Big Apple, and she’s here today to share her family’s journey in bilingual parenting.

Be encouraged, friends.

FAMILY WHALE WATCHING Continue reading

E.’s Language Development at Two Years

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Part of raising a bilingual child is fielding questions of curiosity (which is totally fine) like, “So is your daughter bilingual?” or “How’s her English?” or “What language does she understand?” Although I’m still working on my elevator speech-style answer of 10 seconds or less, and although this post is not meant to be a defense of our choice to parent only in the minority language, Spanish, I did want to write a more personal, or narrative, style post to give you a snapshot of her current language(s) use. Continue reading

Do I ever want to give up on bilingual parenting? {MKB 2015 Vlogging Chain}

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(Photo via Flickr CC, Steve Corey)

¡Hola, amig@s!

I’m super excited to share with you all my first VLOGGING experience: I’ve had the opportunity to participate in the 2015 Vlogging Telephone Chain with other fabulous multilingual/multicultural bloggers through Multicultural Kid Blogs.

Today, I’ll be answering a question from Michelle at Mothertongues. Her questions for me are, “Have you ever wanted to give up on multilingualism? If so, how did you get past that?”

Thanks for watching, friends!

Here’s my question for Anna at Russian Step-by-Step for Children: What advice would you give to expectant or brand new parents who are considering raising their children in more than one language? Be sure to check out her video!

MKB Vlogging Telephone: Raising Multilingual Kids

A Life with Subtitles on Multicultural Kid Blogs
Creative World of Varya
European Mama
Kid World Citizen
All Done Monkey
the piri-piri lexicon
La Cité des Vents
MotherTongues
Españolita…¡sobre la marcha!
Russian Step by Step
Multilingual Parenting
Bilingual Avenue
Tales from the Waygook Mama
Finding Dutchland

Are you a parent raising your child in more than one language? Have you ever wanted to give up on multilingualism? How have you faced your frustrations? I’d love to hear from you!

La Familia Cool {Family Fridays}

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(Photo via Carissa Rogers, Flickr CC)

¡Amig@s! Today’s edition of Family Fridays is one that I’m convinced will leave you energized in this challenging, but rewarding, journey of bilingual parenting. I’m excited to introduce you to Dania Santana, the creative force behind the blog La Familia Cool. Originally from the Dominican Republic, she now lives with her husband and three young children in the United States, where she lives and breathes (and, writes about!) bilingualism and multiculturalism.

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A conversation with co-founders of “Bab’l Books” (Family Fridays) + GIVEAWAY!

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(Photo via Carissa Rogers, Flickr CC)

¡FELIZ VIERNES, amig@s!

As part of the weekly Family Fridays series here on the blog, I’m thrilled to introduce you a unique children’s publishing company, Bab’l Books. Today I talk with co-founders Jair Hernandez and Urvesh Shelat about what sets their company apart, why they’re passionate about putting well-translated children’s books into parents’ hands, and how families themselves can participate n the translation process (yes, you read that right!).

And, if an exciting interview weren’t cool enough, Jair and Urvesh have graciously agreed to giveaway five (5) e-books to five lucky winners…in the languages of your choice! Just click on the link at the end of the interview to enter.

Be encouraged, friends. Continue reading