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Reply with quote  #1 

Hi all!


I'm a little bit discouraged because there has been no reply after my previous post since last week.


I’m a father of a two-month-old from Beijing, China. And I’d like to bring up my boy bilingually. My situation is like this:

1/ Both my wife and I are native Chinese.
2/ We both learn English at school. And we can speak English fluently, but not perfect.
3/ Other family members can ONLY speak Chinese.
4/ Chinese is the community language.
5/ Our goal: To raise our kid bilingually of both Chinese and English.
6/ Problems: mostly immersion problem. Both of us are not native English speakers. And we are not in English-speaking community. I try to speak 100% English to my kid. But I can only be at home after working hours(8am-6pm). That's still not enough for 30% (the least) awake time immersion.



1/ Does my wife should speak some English to him to increase the immersion time? If so, will that cause problem for the kid if she mixes English and Chinese together? Or should she just have to use 100% English to kid, then we apply the mL@H model. That'll be hard for my wife. She also has to teach my boy our native language-Chinese.

2/ Will the bilingual approach definately fail if we just keep the OPOL, which is less than 30% English immersion?

3/ What's the best way to solve our immersion problem? Overseas vacation is not practical for us.

4/ We have no idea of native speakers' baby-related vocabulary.


Any helpful advice or suggestions are welcomed. Websites, downloadable books are preferred.


And again, the basic information :

1. Country you live in: P.R. China
2. Languages the family speaks: Chinese
3. Ages of the children: 2 months
4. Language system (OPOL, ML@H or any other method): mostly OPOL


Many thanks,



Reply with quote  #2 
Hi Jerry,

Funny you should ask -- I just posted a LONG answer to your original question.

However, as this is a volunteer organization  -- i.e. I don't get paid one cent for my time spent answering questions -- everyone will have to be a bit patient ;-)

I simply answer when I have the time, usually once per week...

BTW, don't worry about your wife having to teach your son Chinese. He'll learn from the community -- other children, other people, TV, etc. If that was not the case, no-one would dare using ML@H as a language system (one would end up with a mono-lingual child in the wrong language!!) Only if the child is in 'linguistic isolation' do you run that risk -- say you lived in a fully English speaking part of a city, so your son never heard any Chinese.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Christina Bosemark
Founder & List Moderator
Multilingual Children’s Association
Reply with quote  #3 

Dear Christina,


Thank you so much for your time and dedication for your answer. And thanks for your encouragement. I really appreciate it. It's very helpful.


I'd like to show great respect to you when I read you reply and knew that you've been working so hard and dedicated to moderate this list. It's a great list!


Thanks again,



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