Why it's a sign of creativity when bilingual children mix languages



Few would consider mastering more than one language a bad idea. In fact, research points to a number of cognitive, economic and academic advantages in being bilingual.

Parents who speak different languages understand the family home is an important setting to learn both, and seek various ways to help their children thrive bilingually. One of the best-known approaches is the “one parent, one language” strategy (Opol). Each parent uses one language when communicating with their child, so their offspring learn both languages simultaneously.

Opol emphasises consistency – sticking to one language each – as key to its approach. But this creates the myth that mixing languages should always be avoided. My recent study, part of a new wave of multilingualism studies, would suggest this received wisdom is just that: a myth . . .

For the full story by Chisato Danjo follow the link below to independent.co.uk.