Skip main navigation

Review Week 2 and prepare for Week 3

Article summarising what was covered in Week 2 of 'Understanding Multilingual Children's Language Development' and looking ahead at Week 3's content.
This Week you’ve explored the mechanisms of multilingual language development. You’ve looked at how children learn to understand what they hear and how multilingualism shapes word learning. You then looked at how children process language and learn to read by matching symbols to sounds and syllables. The examples of deep orthography demonstrated some of the challenges that learning English presents. You discussed the importance of listening to and telling stories and considered one action you might take to support your fictional child’s language development.


Two stars and a wish.

  • Two stars: Name two things you feel you have learnt in Week 1.
  • A wish: What do you want to learn more about?

Take some time to consider these and share your two stars and a wish in the Comments area below.

Next Week you’ll apply what you’ve learnt and look at multilingualism in practice – what happens when languages interact and the importance of both quality and quantity of language input. You’ll consider how to help parents understand the benefits of speaking their heritage languages to their children and be presented with practical advice on how to nurture a multilingual environment.


Ask the children you’re supporting about the books they read or have access to in their heritage languages. Carry out some research to find out what’s available for their age and proficiency in the languages they use. Your findings will be put to use in the ‘advocacy strategy’ you’ll undertake next Week.

© University of Reading
This article is from the free online

Understanding Multilingual Children's Language Development

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now