Bilingual Family Literacy Practices

Kids are super perceptive. My friend Cynthia, who leads the Gracepoint church in Hsinchu, Taiwan, along with her husband Eugene, told me about her family’s reading times. In their bilingual family, the kids have intuitively developed their literacy practices. She said that when the kiddos want a Chinese book, they go to dad, and when they want an English book, they go to her.

Warning: don’t continue this post if you’re in a place where a squee or an outburst of “awww” would be malapropos!

isaac cynthia reading

Look at that smile! Cynthia reading Why I Love My Mommy with Isaac. Wise book choice, my friend. 

eugene zoe reading

Eugene and Zoe reading a book in Chinese together. Vintage t-shirt!


And because the pictures aren’t delightful enough, here is a video!

Peng Family Reading from hemilykim on Vimeo.

Did you grow up in a bilingual (or more) family? What kind of literacy practices did you have? Thoughts on Zoe’s Chinese? Or Isaac’s singing-reading? 🙂

5 thoughts on “Bilingual Family Literacy Practices

  1. I grew up in a bilingual family, but don’t remember very many literacy practices since I read mostly in English.. I do remember having some sort of a language switch in my head with my parents, though. I always spoke to them in Mandarin even though they could speak English too.

    Had to listen to Isaac twice to understand what song he was singing :p

    Liked by 1 person

  2. haha! the song that Isaac is singing is the song that I learned when I was in Taiwan learning Mandarin! Of course, I was 22 years old at the time and Isaac is… not.


  3. Pingback: Happy New Year from Bibliopolis! | Gracepoint Church Library

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