Prioritizing Language with a Busy Schedule
If there is one word that most parents could agree describes their life, it would probably be “busy.” Between juggling work life, home life, kids’ activities and all types of responsibilities, many parents find themselves stressed for time and overcommitted-- we certainly do!
However, even the busiest of parents want to do everything they can to provide the best opportunities for their kids. And when it comes to teaching your child a second language, finding time can seem like one of the biggest challenges.
Below, we've curated some of our favorite tips for helping families figure out how to prioritize language when they have a busy schedule.
Setting goals for yourself and your child is a great way to stay on task with your language-teaching efforts so you don’t let it fall by the wayside. Make sure to set realistic goals, even if they don’t seem all that impressive. It’s a great way to feel like you are making progress in your busy schedule.
Maybe you set a goal for 15 minutes of reading bilingual books for kids every day or learning five new words every week—the goals should be your own. Remember, every family is different and each language journey is unique, so make sure that whatever you decide works for you and your family!
Don’t Be Afraid to Multitask
Making time for language learning shouldn't feel like homework. If you are finding it difficult to make time in your busy schedule, then try to find ways to incorporate language learning into the tasks already on your “to-do list.”
You can listen to minority language songs in the car or sing along to the popular nursery rhymes found in musical books. You can make bath time a time where you go over new vocabulary words. Or, our personal favorite, make bedtime stories dual-language by reading bilingual baby books together. Binibi's Estrellita ¿Dónde Estás? book, for instance, features relaxing Spanish lullabies that are perfect to set mood before bedtime. These are all quick and easy ways to incorporate language learning into your established schedule.
Tailor Activities To Your Child
Sometimes, getting your child to sit down and “work on” learning a second language can be a big ask, especially if your child doesn’t seem that interested. Instead of “forcing” your child to do something they don’t want to, tailor the activities to their needs and interest.
If they like playing with certain toys, then use that time to practice different words. If they love Paw Patrol, try watching episodes in their minority language. Perhaps your child loves all things relating to animals, in which case you could read an animal sound book like Binibi's Visiting- Visitando La Granja. Not every learning opportunity needs to be a formal lesson, the important thing is to provide opportunities for exposure and practice!
Know It’s “OK” To Ask For Help
If you are a busy parent trying to teach your child a second language, you may feel like being responsible for your child’s language education is too much to add to your plate. But it’s OK to ask for help! Turning to group language classes, online courses or private tutors are all ways to expose your child to different language learning methods.
Studies already show that variability in language acquisition is important, so having exposure from other sources isn’t you “giving up” as a parent—it is helping your child in the long run.
Here at Binbi, we know that the prospect of teaching a second language to your child can seem like a daunting task. But we know that with the right approach, the right attitude, and effective tools like bilingual children's books, it can be quite fun!
This is why our dual language books (Spanish/English) are fun, fast to read and designed to help parents who are introducing their child to multiple languages. We know that many families today are busy, which is why we always strive to be a source for parents looking to make language learning easy and fun for everyone!
Keep an eye out for upcoming blogs where we'll continue providing tips and tools to support your bilingual parenting journey. Sign up for our newsletter to be the first to hear!