Stop Using L1?!? Ain’t No One Got Time for That!

Blog post explosion! I went from 2 months of no posts to 2 posts in 1 day! You’re welcome. I would normally wait a day or so to add a second post, but this feels too important to wait. In the past 2 weeks, I’ve had 3 different experiences of hearing from bilingual or multilingual parents that their child’s teacher, doctor, or (gasp!) speech-language pathologist has recommended limiting or eliminating all language input other than English in order to decrease the negative impact of a communication disorder.

SAY WHAT Y’ALL?!?!?!? The belief that having input from multiple languages either causes language disorders or makes them worse is FALSE!

dwight-schrute-false

I’d like to think that all my SLP friends and colleagues know better than to disseminate this kind of information to parents, but I’m finding that lots of people out there still are woefully behind on their bilingual/multilingual/ELL research and how it relates to communication disorders. With that in mind, I’m sharing a wonderful website that provides lots of information about the myths surrounding bi/multilingualism and communication disorders: Multicultural Topics in Communication Sciences and Disorders (www.multicsd.org). Here are some of the long-standing MYTHS they discuss:

  1. Delays are to be expected in bilingual children because they are processing two languages at the same time

  2. Code-Switching is a sign of disorder in bilingual children

  3. If a bilingual child has a language disorder, parents should avoid using L1 in the home

  4. If a child has a communication disorder, introducing a second language will make it worse

  5. Bilingual children should only receive instruction and intervention in English in order to lighten their linguistic load

  6. If your child is learning English at school, you should speak English at home, even if it is not your first language

If you are still mistaking these myths as facts, you better check yo’self and EBP (evidence-based practice) it up! Sit back, kick up your feet, sip a cup of tea, and read some research articles! Here’s to supporting a better educational environment for our amazing, fabulous, and uniquely special linguistically diverse kiddos!

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5 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Silvia Melendez-Briskie on April 27, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    Glad to read this material from future SLP grads … Bravo Hanna Bogen..

    Reply

  2. Fabulous post!

    Reply

  3. Thanks for posting this. Here is similar post that I had also read by Dr. Brian Goldstein, which was featured on Dr. Cruz-Ferreira’s blog site: http://beingmultilingual.blogspot.com.au/2011/12/providing-clinical-services-to.html

    PS: Other posts from Dr Cruz-Ferreira’s site are also very worth checking out if you haven’t already!

    Reply

  4. Posted by Nicole on May 15, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    Yes!!! I have heard this is several cpse and cpe meetings from administrators! I was only an extern so it was no my place to chime in but it made me sick to my stomach hearing this woman give advice to stop speaking the l1!!

    Reply

  5. Hey, Congrats for your blog! I was surfing the internet, foud it, and coudnțt stop reading. Great job! It is really helpfull !

    Reply

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