People often ask me if I raised my children bilingually. I have to say, “No. I didn’t have my book!!” Since we were living in multilingual Miami when they were little, I thought it would happen automatically, without my doing anything. As it happens, both of my children learned Spanish very well, but they didn’t learn it in the home. They learned it in school and from visits to countries where Spanish is the major language. My book makes it clear, that raising a bilingual child is not rocket science, but one has to act intentionally to create a supportive environment to help children value their heritage language enough to really want to learn it.
Having bilingual parents is a good start, but not a guarantee that the child will become bilingual. Parents who want a bilingual child must translate their desires and ideas into actions!