5 Benefits of Bilingual Books

5 Benefits of Bilingual Books

Bilingual books have a number of benefits.

Here are 5 of them.

1. No need to get the translator app.
My favorite part about reading bilingual books to my daughter is that I don’t have to pull out my phone and look at google translate when I don’t know a word.

Since the same idea is being communicated in both languages I can use what I do know to figure out the word or phrase that I don’t know.

That keeps me in the flow when I am reading and teaches my daughter that she can infer the means of words by how they are used in the text.

This is a skill that is used to learn new words in monolingual books as well.

2. Easily spot differences
Along the same lines as point number 1 is my second benefit of bilingual books which is being able to easily spot differences in the text. Specifically grammar differences between the two languages.

Different languages can (almost) never be translated word for word.

So being able to see the structure of a sentence in English next to the same sentiment in Dutch teaches me a lot about how sentences are formed in the language I am learning.

Young children won’t actively notice things such as grammatical differences but they will internalize them and use them correctly in the future.

3. Two books in One
Who doesn’t like a good deal? And buying a bilingual book is a great deal because you basically get two books in one!

If you are in a One Parent One Language (opol) household then bilingual books are ideal.

Each parent can read their native language while the child gets the same language input in both languages.

4. Encourages reading in multiple languages
And when a child starts to read on their own, or can already read and are learning a new language, bilingual books help bridge the gap.

For instance, if your child can already read in English but is just starting to learn Spanish then a bilingual book will allow them to fully understand the information in English while increasing their vocabulary and grammar knowledge in Spanish.

5. Demonstrates value of both languages
If you are raising your child bilingual (or multilingual like me) then you know it is important to show your child that their non-dominate language is valuable and useful.

A bilingual book shows equality for the languages and that both are important.

Books are already wonderful things. But if you make them bilingual you get even more benefits out of them.

Back to blog