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My Materials

The Funniest Activity I’ve Ever Done with My Bilingual Kids and Students

This might sound like an exaggeration, but it’s honestly not: the activity I’ll share with you today often gets my bilingual kids and students laughing like mad chipmunks. And it hits the funny bone of a wide range of ages, too, from first graders to teens. (I’ve even done this activity when I was teaching at local universities, and these college students learning English as a second language—who were normally so shy and passive—would soon be seized by fits of

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“Daddy Is Dangerous”: A Fun, Effective Word Game for Bilingual Kids

Lately I’ve been playing a funny little game with my kids. I call it “Daddy Is Dangerous.” (Feel free to rename it “Mommy Is Magical,” if you like. ) It’s a simple game—all you have to do is print out the PDF file I provide in this post and grab a pair of scissors—and if your children are from about 4 to 12 in age (the developmental stage known to experts as “the silly years”), I bet they’ll enjoy it.

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Turn Your Kids into Eager Readers with This Fun, Simple Strategy

One important challenge that parents of bilingual kids face, once the children have attained a basic level of reading competence in the minority language, is encouraging independent reading so they can reach higher and higher levels of language ability. It’s vital, of course, to find regular time to read aloud to your children, and read alongside them, taking turns, but the more a child can be persuaded to read on his own, too, the more progress he will make in

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Don't Read These Words!

Don’t Read These Words!

Roy said something funny not long ago. He came up to me with a pained look on his little face and moaned, “Daddy, I can’t stop reading!” He then proceeded to explain that he can’t help but read the English words that happen to fall under his gaze as he moves about the house. I gave a sympathetic smirk, as a good father should, but you can be sure that ever since then I’ve been secretly making his plight even

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What Is Captive Reading and How Will It Help My Bilingual Child?

Captive reading is a strategy for increasing a child’s exposure to reading material. Because exposure to print is at the very heart of raising a bilingual child with good ability in the minority language, captive reading can play an important role in boosting this exposure. As a rule, the more exposure to books and other texts a child receives, the stronger that child’s language ability will be, in all skill areas. Captive reading is essentially the “captive audience” approach to

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