As you know I have an interest in families who are raising bilingual children. I have blogged about this and want to get a dialogue going among parents so we can share resources. I just got a note from a mom of 2 year old Katerina who speaks both English and Spanish. Katerina’s mom offered the following ideas for books and TV shows that have been helpful in immersing Katerina in Spanish:

“Katerina is still speaking two languages.  I find myself trying to stay disciplined about speaking to her in Spanish because she will sometimes speak back to me in English.  She has become a little bored with a lot of the Spanish books we have.  She’s more interested in stories.  She loves Dr. Seuss so I found some in Spanish at Barnes and Noble.  Some wording was changed so as not to compromise the rhyme and rhythm.  I also recently purchased the following books in Spanish for her which are translations as well; Leo, the Late Bloomer (Leo, el retono tardio) by Robert Kraus and My Mom ( Mi Mama) by Anthony Browne.  She enjoys them all. 
Also, she loves Dora the Explorer.  There are a lot of Spanish books about Dora and she eats them up.  On Saturday morning there are Spanish cartoons on Univision…Diego and Dora are on there as well as are other shows like Plaza Sesamo, the Latino version of Sesame Street.  I like to sit with her and talk to her about the show as it plays and ask her questions.  These cartoons are pretty interactive so it lends itself to dialogue, especially Dora and Diego.”
Thanks to Katerina’s mom for those helpful suggestions. Mom is doing just what she should be to encourage language development by sitting WITH her daughter as she watches the shows and interact with her in response to the content. Her daughter will get much more language learning out of this method than just sitting in front of the TV.
Keep the suggestions and comments coming. Parents want to know where you can get good books, music and DVD’s in different languages.
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