Saturday, February 19th, 2011
The Economics of Bilingualism
Not everyone has the same reasons for raising bilingual children. For some, it is necessity: a language particular to the country you’re in, your family language, your parent’s language. For my family, our kids learning Arabic is a necessity. Arabic is their father’s native tongue and the language half their relatives speak. Not teaching them would be unthinkable.
My kids are also picking up some Tibetan from their daycare providers. We have encouraged the teachers to speak only Tibetan to them and they responded with utter surprise as I don’t think many of the other parents have expressed this desire. We see any language learned as beneficial, even more obscure ones. All languages open doors and present unseen opportunities, not just the widely spoken ones. When my kids reach an age to express their opinions beyond food, toys and clothing choices and tell me they are passionate about learning Quechua or Tibetan, and not French as we chose for them, I would encourage them wholeheartedly.
Take a look at this chart below on the top economies in 2015 and the predictions for 2050. Does this influence at all what languages you will encourage your kids to learn? What influences your decision on their language acquisition? Leave a comment and let me know–I’d love to hear from you.
Top Economies of the Future Based on Projected Gross Domestic Product
© 2011 – 2013, Stephanie Meade. All rights reserved.
More Great Stuff You'll Love: