samedi 13 novembre 2010

Are Speech Therapist trained for Bilingual Children ?

The question has been raised by many groups around the world.

The general answer is NO. Speech therapists - even if they are bilingual themselves - do not receive any training on how to assess bilingual children. Their methods and intrumensts are usually designed for monolingual people.
A bilingual person is not an addition of two monolingualisms !!!
Unfortunately, speech therapists are not trained for the bilingual population !! And they cannot speak all the languages round the globe !!!

It is a problematic question for parents !! Espacially when they are told their children are delaying in learning the language. We should not forget that the acquisition of language for bilingual children is completely different than for monolingual children.

There is hope however :
A group of scientits in a University in the USA have found how to assess and help bilingual children speaking English and Spanish.

10 Other Ideas to help your child be fully Bilingual

I would just refer you to another site : 

You will find there many interesting ideas !!

jeudi 4 novembre 2010

Multilingual Breakfast

For those who are at home or those who can, I suggest that meet once a month for a multilingual breakfast.

Let's say that the first one will be on Friday 26 November !!
Let's say we meet at 10 am !!
Place : what about Mahon Point (downstairs near Debenhams !!)

Bring a friend if you wish !! I am sure we all know families who have two or more languages at home !!
That will be an opportunity to meet, chat, share ideas and views !!

Please, let me know, if you are coming and send me an email :

mardi 2 novembre 2010


I am getting inspired here by Corey Heller who gives tips for a successful way of learning a language. She is extremely active in bilingualism and helping families to raise their children to be bilingual.
In short, she says, language learning should be

  1. playful - because it has to be like a game. 
  2. imperfect - making mistakes is a great way for improvement.
  3. daily - you should practice it daily 
  4. incentive because it must not be an obligation - we must not learn at certain precise time of the day 
  5. spoken - because a language is there to be spoken as much as possible
  6. inefficient - because if we are doing it at home and not at school, the idea of being marked is not there
  7. emotional - because a language is living and every one would have different feeling about it
I think she has great ideas. We are trying to have our children be bilingual and use the different languages we have at home. If we want them to be able to speak them, enjoy them and then be fluent in them, we must present these languages as games, as toys. Children like to play. They are not at school and the "other" language (I mean the one which is not used at school) should not be forced on them. There are so many ways to make our children appreciate them and use them.

lundi 1 novembre 2010

Europe has launched a new competition !! "Tickle your stories !!"
Make people smile and laugh with your stories
Visit the web site for more information and to register !!

Let's join and participate !!!

samedi 30 octobre 2010


As coordinator of our group in Cork, I have to inform you about major changes which occured in the Association : "Bilingual Forum Ireland".

On 16 October 2011, Francesca La Morgia, who was chairperson, resigned officially from the position and left the Association.

She divided "Bilingual Forum Ireland" into two separate groups : one in Dublin with Natalia Kublova and one in Cork with myself.

Each group would organise meetings with members, such as talks, fundraising, parents' clinics, teachers' training, etc...
Each group would create a yearly schedule of events
Each group would keep members informed (here in Cork - I would send emails and use this blog)
Each group can collaborate with the other group.

I hope everybody is still interested and we can work on a programme of events together. If you have been as inquisitive as I have been on the web, you would have seen a huge number of similar groups / associations around the world. They organise many different types of activities.
So please, let me know what you are awaiting from the group.
I have planned a few activities / events and hope you will all be present.

lundi 4 octobre 2010



PICCOLINGO organizes a competition on the theme : "What do foreign languages mean to you ?"


The idea is to make a picture, a sculpture or a scale model.
Then take a photo or scan your drawing and send it to them.
Add an explanation to the picture with the name of the child and contact details (email, phone number, full name, city and country)

The contests in open to European citizens and residents of the European Union (for children, parents need to register in this contest on their behalf)

Maximum 5 pictures per participants in JPG or JPEG format. The file should not exceed 2MB and should not be larger then 70x70 pixels

Prizes :
3 prizes of 3 vouchers and 3 "Piccolingo in Action" books. The vouchers are a set of language books valued at  € 50, € 70 and € 100 (in the language of your choice)

DEADLINE : 31 October 2010

Send your photo(s) to "Bilingual Forum Ireland" at and we will forward them to Piccolingo in Action

mardi 13 avril 2010

How can my child learn to read and write in the other language ?

The Cork Group of Bilingual Forum Ireland will meet on Monday 26 April at 7:30 pm.
In Room 106 of the Western Gate building of UCC.

Many of us are wondering how we can teach our children to read and write in the other language.
Our children are going to school in English. They learn to read, write and count in English.
When their schoolmates are playing outside, they do not want to go to another school or listen to another teacher to learn how to read and write in the other language used at home.
So how can we do without offering boring activities ??
How can they learn in an enjoyable manner which will give them pleasure ??
There are ways of doing it !!!
We will try to discover them together.

If you wish to share your experiences, if you have ideas on how you can do that, please join us and let us know.

You are most welcome too to leave a point of view here and let us know what you think and do.

I am looking forward to meeting you a our next meeting and sharing with you some ideas and practicalities.

lundi 1 mars 2010

Multilingual Reading

On 13 March 2010, Bilingual Forum Ireland is organising a Multinlingual Reading.
Have you ever heard the same story read in various languages ?
How would it sound to you ?
If you want to share the experience, please do come and join us on that day.
We will meet at University College Cork in the afternoon.
For more information, send us an e-mail.

vendredi 26 février 2010

Bilingual books

I am sure we all like books and reading is so important for our children.
There is a company selling bilingual books, Mantra Lingua (
When children can read in one language and know another one, they are always curious to know the words in this other language.
The books in this collection offer them the possibility of reading the same story in the two languages they know.
Enjoy !!!

jeudi 25 février 2010

Bilingual Children do not syllabify the same way than monolingual children

I discovered this research about the way children with two or more languages syllabify. It is quite interesting. Unfortunately, it is in Dutch, but I can translate for those who are interested.
The researcher, Ivana Brasileiro, from the Department of Humanities in the Univerity of Utrecht, in the Netherlands, wrote a thesis entitled in English : "The effects of bilingualism on children's perception of speech sounds". She discovered that bilingual children have another way of recognising the sound than children with only one language at home. They also learn and memorize the vowels in a different manner.
Here is the website for those interested :

mardi 23 février 2010

First Meeting

Last night, the Cork Group of the Bilingual Forum Ireland met at UCC in the Speech and Language Therapy Building, Brookfield.
Fifteen people from various background attended the meeting. Parents, but also speech therapists and members of Enable Ireland were present looking for answers to their questions, but also for help.
Their were very happy to have a group started in Cork and are looking for more time to share.
Isabelle O'Neill will be coordinating the activities in Cork and its region.
We will try to meet every six weeks.
Events will be organised as well as talks, seminars and training with speech therapists and members of Enable Ireland.