Strategies to Support Language and Speech Development for a Bilingual Child



Strategies to Support Language and Speech Development for a Bilingual Child in a Child Care Setting and at Home

Supporting your Child in a Childcare Setting

Prepared by Jane Druganova, based on experience and training. Jane is an experienced Bicultural support teacher via BSP Community services central. She is also a Russian Community Group coordinator and a teacher/coordinator of the RUSKIDS play sessions for children under 5 years of age.

  1. Speak slow
  2. Use 1-2 word sentences to explain what you mean, keep it simple
  3. Use gestures and mimics
  4. Use choice modelling rather than open ended questions, e.g. “Do you want red or green pencil?”, rather than “Which pencil do you want?”
  5. Explain what is required from the child in the childcare setting (routine and structure) show him/her what to do (e.g. where to put the bag, where to get lunch boxes, etc.)
  6. Praise his/her efforts to try things
  7. Praise attempts to say words in English even if they are incorrect. Do NOT correct the word; attempting is more important at this stage
  8. Please be patient when the child is about to finish the activity or is trying to show you something (not applicable when routine is required) — this is the other way of communication!
  9. If the child speaks home language to you, reply back in English or “put” English word into his/her mouth, so that he/she can pick them up
  10. Good Luck!

Supporting your Child at Home

by Dr Criss Jones Diaz

  1. Communication strategies
  2. Be consistent and avoid language mixing
  3. Be a positive role model
  4. Provide encouragement and praise child’s efforts
  5. Listen and respond to child’s conversation
  6. Ask lots of questions to extend child’s utterances and phrases
  7. Model correct forms - avoid correcting child’s speech
  8. Use the language consistency
  9. Don’t give up!