Since we both have different native languages and we wanted to incorporate English in our household (sorry Spain, but we´re just not very impressed with the quality of English here so we figured it would be better to just speak English at home instead of those classes), we already decided before the bichin was born that we wanted to be a trilingual household.
I speak in Dutch to the little guy, C in English and Spanish he learns outside of the home through daycare and friends & family. At home C and I try to speak English amongst each other. At first, I was a bit afraid that this might be too much, but it´s amazing to see how this 17mo understands all of it, it doesn´t matter if he hears Dutch, English or Spanish, he knows what to do with it. And also speaking to some language specialists it was only confirmed that this is beneficial for him and certainly can´t hurt.
So at home we stick to Dutch or English, if we watch a video with the bichin we make sure it´s one of those languages and we only have Dutch and English books. Both of us are really avid readers, so when the bichin was only a few months old we already started reading to him. And it has grown into a very important part of our bedtime routine, where after dinner we always read 2 (but usually 3) books. The bichin really enjoys it and every time more often he requests some reading during the day as well by bringing us some books and pointing to the couch.
In terms of language we stick to the same concept, if I do the reading I take the Dutch books, if C does the reading he takes the English books. And if the bichin comes with a book in the other language, we translate as we go. Since we read so much, we are always on the lookout for great new books (because seriously, there are plenty of the ones we have at home that I can recite in my sleep by now) and for our English book department, that´s more challenging than for the Dutch part. When we visit the Netherlands I tend to take some books back and, honestly, until now I hardly have bought any. My mom kept all of our children´s books so I basically just pick a few from my favorites when I was young and re-use them for the bichin. (In addition, my mom is also a book addict so she tends to gift us quite some on every birthday/holiday etc.) However, for the English books, it´s more challenging to have a good flow of great new books we don´t know yet. Obviously, in the stores here it´s all Spanish, and since both of us don´t know many children books in English, apart from the typical classics, it´s not just a supply challenge but also an inspiration challenge.
Until I came across Bookroo and seriously, if you like reading and want to nurture your kids´ love for reading, this is exactly what you need. Bookroo offers a monthly subscription service for children´s books and you can choose between picture books or board books. The books come beautifully wrapped (so it´s also perfect for gifts!) and the combined value is always more than the subscription price. Say what? Yes! So it´s actually also economically better to get books via their subscription instead of going on a search for books you don´t know yet and buying them separately. The fun thing about Bookroo is that they send you great books that are less well-known, the hidden gems, so if you´re like us and need inspiration for good, new books this is perfect.
I am absolutely in love with this service and if your family, like ours, is into reading and you want a fun way to foster your kid´s love for reading, make sure to check out Bookroo. (Oh and even better, with the code “tinefran” you will get 10$ off!)
I received a Bookroo book package in exchange for an honest opinion, yet, as always, all thoughts and opinions remain my own.