Is More Better? Promoting Optimal Language Development of Children in Multilingual Homes

ID number
Online - at your computer

Your home or school
Any, IL 00000
United States

4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
4:15 pm - 4:30 pm

Although multilingualism is the norm in many parts of the world, erroneous information and myths about multilingualism abound. Given that almost one quarter of children in the U.S. speak a language other than English in the home, early childhood professionals, including educators and pediatricians, are very likely to encounter children who are multi-language learners. Nevertheless, multilingualism is generally not part of the curriculum in most training programs. As a result, many professionals that work with young children lack information about typical multilingual language development, essential in order to identify disorders and avoid both over-diagnoses and under-diagnoses, and therefore do not feel comfortable advising families about dual language learning or identifying multilingual children with language delays and disorders.   

This presentation will review multilingual language development, answer common questions that parents and providers have on this topic, and highlight the importance of sociolinguistic pride for multilingual children growing up in the United States. This topic is ultimately about equity--promoting optimal development for all children, removing ill-conceived barriers to relational health (e.g. parent being told to speak in English with their baby instead of using home language), identifying children who may have a language delay, and advocating that all stakeholders (parents, doctors, teachers, policymakers) have the most up to date information to be able to provide the best care for multilingual children.

Mariana Glusman, MD
Learner objectives

Particpants will be able to:

1. Respond to common questions and concerns raised by families about multi language learning

2. Identify multilingual children with developmental disabilities and recognize when to make appropriate referrals for early intervention

3. Instruct families on strategies to help promote language development in multilingual children

Intended audience
Administrator, Early Childhood Special and General Educator, Early Intervention Personnel, Family Educator, Family Member, Occupational Therapist/Physical Therapist, Psychologist, Social Worker, Speech/Language Therapist, Teacher Assistant
Contact hours
State Performance Plan Indicator Alignment
SPPI 7 - Early Childhood Outcomes
Gateways training stage
Training topic area
Interactions with Children, Special Needs/Inclusion
Gateways to Opportunity content area
Interactions, Relationships and Environments