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Reading

Are Your Kids or Students Learning Spanish or English? This New Bilingual Book of Fairy Tales (with Online Audio) Could Help Fuel Their Progress!

What is 28 Bilingual English-Spanish Fairy Tales & Fables? 28 Bilingual English-Spanish Fairy Tales & Fables is a language learning resource (not a picture book) designed to fuel the improvement of learners of Spanish or English. Engaging and effective for children, teens, and adults, with easy access to online audio files offering professional narration in both languages. A useful, flexible resource for self-study, homeschooling, or classroom use, it includes ideas for learners, parents, and teachers to make the most of

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Chameleon Reader: The One Product I Wish I Could Gift to Every Parent and Teacher of Bilingual or Multilingual Children

If only Chameleon Reader had been around when I was teaching bilingual kids, and when my own kids were small! It would have been such a fun and effective way to nurture their ability in our minority language! Full disclosure: Over the past eight years, since I began this blog, I’ve regularly gotten requests to review books and products and services with some connection to raising bilingual kids. And in many cases, I’ve received free “review copies” of these things,

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Play This Great Indoor Game with Your Kids (And Get Them Eagerly Reading, Too)

The other day at The Bilingual Zoo, one mother (thanks, Judit!) described a game she was playing with her young son in the house and how much fun it was for them both. And, at the same time, how it got him reading eagerly in their target language. Reading about her experience, I fondly recalled the times I played this game with my own kids when they were small. And I thought: “Yeah, they’re now teenagers, but I bet they

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I Did Something the Other Day That I Thought I’d Never Do

The other day I took my son to the library. No, going to the library isn’t the thing I thought I’d never do. In fact, I used to go to the library all the time—every week, like clockwork—to borrow books to read to my kids. So it isn’t the library itself—it’s why we went to the library. For the sake of the minority language The library is downtown, sitting in a small park, and the parking lot is some distance

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NEW! The Perfect Book for Parents Raising Bilingual Kids

Just in time for Christmas! I WANT TO BE BILINGUAL! is the perfect book for parents—especially new parents and parents of younger kids—who dream of raising bilingual or multilingual children. Written by Adam Beck, author of the popular guide Maximize Your Child’s Bilingual Ability, this playful book is a unique “picture book for adults” with delightful illustrations by Pavel Goldaev. Narrated by a lively baby, the book emphasizes the most important information parents need for realizing joyful success on a

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Reflections on My Five Weeks in Europe, Part 3: Lunch with Simon Farrow

Another special highlight from my trip was the opportunity to meet in person, for the very first time, the artist who worked so hard on the illustrations for my novel, How I Lost My Ear, a funny, action-packed epic for older children and adults that was published in January 2018. In fact, before we met, I had spoken to him only once, over Skype, and that was just briefly. Otherwise, we communicated through email: many, many, many messages over the

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Great Reading for Summer! Engaging Books for Language-Loving Families!

Want to read some engaging, widely-praised books this summer? Please take a look at my popular nonfiction and fiction for language-loving families! (Yes, bearded dragons included!) “the ideal guidebook for parents” Maximize Your Child’s Bilingual Ability: Ideas and inspiration for even greater success and joy raising bilingual kids “A pure gem! Adam Beck has created a truly wonderful and easily readable book that parents everywhere will enjoy and that bilingual families and children will benefit from.” —Dr. Annick De Houwer,

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This Key Strategy Can Empower Your Child’s Bilingual Ability Throughout the Childhood Years—and Even for a Whole Lifetime

In the recent post Make the Most of the “Golden Years” of Your Minority Language Influence, I introduced the challenging new stage of my family’s bilingual journey. Now that my kids—Lulu, nearly 15, and Roy, 12—are both in junior high school and are leading busy, increasingly independent lives in Japanese, I’m afraid my presence in their days, and the English exposure that goes along with it, is far more limited than it was when they were younger. In fact, the

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Try This Really Fun and Effective Activity with an Early-Reading Child or Language Learner

Over the years, I’ve amassed big piles of papers that hold teaching materials, creative writing, and ideas for future blog posts, books, and other projects. From time to time I’ll sift through these piles in an attempt to file the papers I want to keep and discard the ones I no longer need. But the truth is, I never seem to get all the way to the bottom of these stacks and so the piles begin rising again as I

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My Bilingual Kids Are Formally Tested in Their Minority Language Ability for the First Time (And the Results Are Revealing)

My son turns 12 in March and my daughter will be 15 in June. But until last month, they hadn’t been tested in any formal way to assess their ability in English, our minority language. So I signed them up to take the EIKEN test, which is a widely-used English test in Japan and is given several times a year in locations across the country. The EIKEN test consists of seven “grades,” or levels: the lowest test level is Grade

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Bilingual Lives: Beatrice Beckmann, Founder of KinderBooks, a Subscription Service for Children’s Books

To successfully raise a bilingual or multilingual child, the main requirement is language exposure: the child must receive an ample amount of meaningful input in the target language (or languages) on a regular basis. And the more of this input you can provide, from yourself and/or from other sources of exposure, the greater the odds of fostering active language ability. The two central pillars for providing this exposure are abundant speech (from you or from other speakers of the target

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