Do you have to start teaching a second language from birth? Does it help to get a nanny who speaks a second language? Is there any way your child will retain the language you speak even though you're currently in a country where another language is dominant? Does learning a second language lead to any developmental advantages beyond just the benefits of learning the language?
Several listeners have actually written to me requesting an episode on this topic, and one has been particularly insistent (you know who you are!), so I was very glad to finally find an expert!
Dr. Erica Hoff leads the Language Development Lab at Florida Atlantic University and studies language development and bilingualism in children. She gives us the lowdown on the best ways to raise a bilingual child (and doesn't mince words on how difficult it is) - and also answers my burning question: I'm not planning to teach my daughter a second language at the moment, so am I a terrible parent?