On Not Being Bilingual

Read this story this morning, which I thought was interesting. A high school girl writes about not being bilingual in Chinese and English. She indicates that she used to be fluent, but has lost her home language–Chinese.

The loss of losing Chinese has resulted in not being able to communicate with some of her family and she regrets the loss. That’s to me anyway, an important reason to maintain a home language. Within a family, it helps to maintain connections especially between generations. Later in life I think that bilingualism opens other opportunities as well. And of course there is evidence that bilingualism can lead to cognitive advantages.

That’s not to say that she can’t learn or relearn Chinese. She probably can through study, interaction, and/or travel. It might be hard at first but it could be worth it.

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