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ERIC Number: EJ889718
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1524-5039
Pathways to Bilingualism: Young Children's Home Experiences Learning English and Spanish
Rodriguez, M. Victoria
Early Childhood Research & Practice, v12 n1 Spr 2010
Nowadays, more and more young children in the United States have the experience of speaking a language other than English at home, and many parents choose to educate their children bilingually. This study explored the home-language experiences, in English and Spanish, of three young Latino girls ages 15 months, 16 months, and 30 months, respectively, when the study began. They were observed at home between 40 and 70 hours for 30 months. Three questions guided the study: (1) What languages are used at home and for what purposes? (2) Who addresses the participant children in English and Spanish? and (3) How do the participants express themselves in English and Spanish? The data suggest that the three participants received input in English and Spanish based on the bilingual characteristics of the families. However, as they grew older and their proficiency in English improved, the input in Spanish diminished, as well as their ability to speak Spanish. At the end of the study, the three participants understood English and Spanish, one spoke English and Spanish when prompted, one spoke only in English, and another one spoke in both languages without being prompted. This study suggests that raising children bilingually may require support of the minority language outside the home, with collaboration among the schools, the families, and the community.
Clearinghouse on Early Education and Parenting, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 51 Gerty Drive, Champaign, IL 61820. Tel: 877-275-3227; Tel: 217-333-1386; Fax: 217-244-7732; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States