Bilingual Avenue with Marianna Du Bosq

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I share 18 tips from the Bilingual Avenue Advent Calendar.  These are quick, fun and easy tips that you can easily implement at home any time of the year.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_148.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:21pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Jennifer Langkjaer from Parenting Abroad about her parenting experience with multilingual children in  Switzerland. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_147.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:19am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I walk you step by step through how to make your very own audio book.  This is specially a great resource if you have a hard time finding books in your own target language. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_146.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:46pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I host a consulting call with a Bilingual Avenue Member.  We talk about school choices for bilingual families, accents and who involved we should be in supporting the community language. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_145.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:00am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I share 6 tips specifically for parents who sometimes feel awkward when speaking the target language.  These are great ideas to get you going and feeling more confident! 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_144.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:51am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with the creator of Mama Lingua about her personal experience raising bilingual kids in a non-native language.  We also talk about the wonderful app  that she has developed for other non-native parents!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_143.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:09pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I talk about language plans and what you need to have in yours!  Don't delay, get started on a plan and give yourself some direction as to what to do next to help your kids on their language journey. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_142.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:22pm EDT

On this episode of the podcast, I host a consulting call with a Bilingual Avenue member.  We discuss a wide set of activities that parents can implement at home with their kids to add rigor to their children's language learning experience. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_141.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:04pm EDT

In this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat about speech and language delays.  Should you worry that speaking more than one language will impact your child's speech and language development?  If you are have any concerns at all, you'll want to tune into this episode.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_140.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:43pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I interview Nicole Schwarz from Imperfect Families about some of the struggles we have as parents when trying to do the right thing for our children and getting overwhelmed in the process.  Nicole also shares excellent tips for setting personal and parenting goals. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_139.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, we talk about the three must have elements for success on the language journey!  Through my time working with bilingual families I have noticed that those families that are achieving greater success on the journey have 1) set goals, 2) designed a language plan and 3) are surrounded with a supportive community. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_138.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:42am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I host a consulting call with Angelica Engelmann.  We chat about how to teach grammar, support the learning process of the community language and fun vocabulary instruction.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_137.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:41pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I pick up on our podcast series for how to raise a bilingual child.  We talk about the most popular types of language plans to help you identify one that will work for your family.  If you are on the fence about which language policy to use, check out this free resource to help you decide:

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_136.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I provide six steps on how bilingual parents can introduce chapter books to their children. This is a follow on from a previous episode (episode 127) where I chatted with one of the members from the Bilingual Avenue Members’ Club on reading strategies for her children.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_128.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:13pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I host a consulting call with a member of the Bilingual Avenue club, Amber Money.  We chat about how to make the most out of the language explosion, what to do when children mix languages and how to set expectations around language. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_135.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:35pm EDT

On this episode of the podcast, I start a three part series on how to raise a bilingual child.  This first part is ALL about setting a strong foundation in your home.  We talk about the importance of increasing exposure, creating a need to use the language and choosing words that are relevant to your child!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_134.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of the podcast, I speak to Diana Sampedro the author of the book Baby English. Diana is a non-native English speaker raising a bilingual child.  She shares her perspective, tips and strategy. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_133.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:41pm EDT

Is traveling with kids in the near future for you? Do you have enough tricks up your sleeve?

Traveling can be a great time for a family but there's something about that plane ride that can be somewhat stressful for families especially on long flights.  Check out these ideas to keep you kids entertained while working on language skills!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_132.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Amy Liermann about her family's language journey with her baby.  We chat about how to use motherese in Spanish, sticking to the target language when you are out and about in the community and how to flood her son with Spanish when he come home from daycare. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_131.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I read an excerpt from my ebook The Essential Guide to Raising Happy Bilingual Children debunking seven myths about bilingual individuals.   Are any of these myths holding you back?

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_130.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:44pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Kerstin Cable from Fluent Language.  She shares very helpful tactics and strategies for memorizing vocabulary and learning about grammar while having fun. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_129.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:50pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I host a consulting call with Conchi Manresa, a member of the Bilingual Avenue Members’ Club! We talk about how to transition to a One Parent, One Language policy, strategies for helping her children's reading development and how to maximize a visit from an English speaking au pair this summer. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_127.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:34pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I answer a member's question on what kinds of games can be played in the car to infuse language. Tune in to hear 4 games I play in the car and one that I do with my baby as well!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_126.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I interview Adam Beck, the creator of and the Bilingual Zoo.  Adam chats with us about his book, Maximize Your Child's Bilingual Ability.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_125.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:26pm EDT

On this episode, I answer a future mother who is hesitant about speaking her mother tongue to her child.  Spoiler alert: I challenge her to do it! Tune in to find out why! 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_124.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I host the very first consulting call podcast episode.  I chat with Alice Jansen, a member of the Bilingual Avenue Members’ Club! We talk about games for language development, the pros and cons of TV and how to establish a solid foundation for her daughter to learn Spanish!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_123.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:21pm EDT

We are a Spanish couple living in a bilingual area where Spanish and Valencian are spoken equally. Our son is 3.5 years old. I have always talked to him in English since he was born. His father has talked Spanish to him. And he has been exposed to Valencian since he was 2 years old, first at nursery school and now at school.

He understands everything I tell him in English but only on rare occasions does he answer me back in English. He says some words in English, but he’s hardly never able to build simple sentences spontaneously. I have used different strategies when he answers me back in Spanish. I usually repeat the sentence in English and then he says “yes”, but he doesn’t repeat them in English.

In the last days I pretended not to understand what he was saying in Spanish to see if I could “force” him to speak English to me. But then he went to talk to his father and asked him the question in Spanish. Sometimes I think he is not getting enough exposure to English. He is at school from 9 to 5 and some days I only see him in the evening for dinner. There the vehicular language is Valencian and he gets two hours per week in English.

My husband is also fluent in English and sometimes he speaks English to him at home. Should he start speaking English to him now regularly? At home or everywhere? Since both of us are Spanish it is a bit weird to speak English with each other. I teach English in a local high school and I feel confident with it, but I’m not sure if my husband could do the same.

Our son has a good attitude towards learning and speaking English. His tales, cartoons and films are always in English and his bedtime stories too. We have planned a summer school in English for him to foster his exposure to English. During the last Easter holidays in which we spent more time together he started to say some short sentences in English such as “I’m ready” or “I don’t know”, etc. but now that he’s back to school he answers me back in Spanish again. Sometimes I feel like quitting speaking English to him, but I’m afraid he’ll lose all that he’s already learned.

What can we do?

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_122.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:18pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I interview fellow podcaster and multilingual mother, Olena Centeno about her language journey and the work she does to support bilingual families worldwide.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_121.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18pm EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I share seven tips for finding resources in the target language. 


Hi there I'm a Venezuelan mother of a three years old boy.  I have spoken Spanish to my son from birth, I communicate in English with my husband, and my husband speaks Croatian to my son (he has no problem with the Spanish as he speaks Italian too and understand most of the Spanish words )

My son speaks Spanish and speaks-understand a bit of English and some Croatian!

We actually live in Australia and it is very hard to find materials in Spanish.  I would love to know where I can find resources in Spanish and how to keep my son motivated ! My son started preschool three weeks ago and sometimes he asks me questions in English, I always reply in Spanish.


Thank you Maria for submitting your question!

This is such a common struggle that multilingual families have.  We are working hard to add more exposure to our children and so it often feels like we never ever have enough resources. 

You also have the added struggle that depending on your location in the world, you may have an easier time finding resources in one language versus the other.  

To help out Maria and those of you following along at home who may be on the same boat, I am going to run through a few resources that you can use to help you add a few more items to your toolkit

  1. The first resource is Eulingual.

We had the creator of Eulingual on the podcast, Joanne Wall.  She joined us back on episode 67.  She told us all about how Eulingual is her labor of love where she has over 3,000 links for language learning in twenty different languages including: Afrikaans, Arabic, Chinese – Mandarin, Czech, Danish, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Lithuanian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili and at the time she was also adding Romanian to the list!

This is a great collection of resources.  You can go on there and dig around for hours and I know you will walk away with some wonderful resources that you can add to your toolkit.

       2. The second resource is called Lingowl resources.

She created this website specifically to help parents looking for language resources to help their children.  It now offers dictionaries, flash cards, games, bilingual books, etc in a variety of languages including Spanish. Chinese, English, French, German, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Russian and several other languages.

I just love this resource because it was specifically inspired to help other parents so I know you’ll find some great resources to help you. 

       3. The third resource is Audio Books. 

If you are a regular podcast listener, you know I love audio books. Even though I talk about them being a good resource I am not sure that I have shared some of my favorite benefits about audio books with you so I wanted to go ahead and list a few and then share with you where you can get your hands on some.

  1. Children can understand language above their reading level when they listen to a story.
  2. Audio books allow you to bring literacy skills into the more mundane parts of your kid’s routine like car rides.
  3. Poetry can be brought to life for children because a narrator can convey timing, tone and rhythm.
  1. Audio books are great at helping children develop listening skills and quiet concentration.
  2. Children can be exposed to other speakers of your target language while developing fluency!

As you can see, audio books are pretty great.  My favorite go to resource for audio books is Audible which is under the Amazon umbrella.  If you head over to you can get your first audio book free when you sign up for a 30 day membership. 

This way you can see if this is something that your children find interesting although I can already assure you that they will enjoy it. is an affiliate link so if you choose to sign up for the Audible membership through that link I will get a small commission but it is at no cost to you.

       4. The fourth resource is a multilingual alphabet.

 Since you are in Australia, I just have to share one of my favorite resources for multilingual families which was developed in Australia and that is The Little Linguist Alphabet from!  It’s a multilingual alphabet which has 26 objects that all start with the same letter in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German and Dutch. 

Maria, I know you have added Croatian as one of your family languages but this alphabet will come in handy when working in English and Spanish. You mentioned your son is three and so likely letters are a big part or will soon be a big part of his world so an alphabet is certainly going to be handy.

       5. The fifth resource is apps. 

Our children are digital natives and if we use apps with a purpose we can make sure our little ones are learning language while they are at it.

My two favorite in Spanish is Stories by the folks that created Gus on the Go and then Mundo Lanugo.  I’ll include links in the show notes to the episodes where I talked to each of the creators of these two apps.

        6. The sixth resource is to repurpose materials you already have in other languages.

You can, for example, still leverage books you currently have in English and read them to your son in Spanish.  Although my hunch is you are probably already doing that.

But how about games? Find one game, if you can a new game, and set the expectations that the game has to be played in Spanish in order to play it.  Find a simple game so that your son is not caught up trying to understand the rules of the game and can instead focus on using his Spanish. 

In our home we do this with Candy Land and it’s a big hit. We also play memory only in Spanish.

Take a look at everything you currently have and challenge yourself to see how you can infuse some Spanish into it.

Keep in mind that playing is a huge component of how our children learn language.  We often overlook this but with you as the Spanish speaker, try to dedicate at least 30 minutes a day where you can spend uninterrupted time just playing with your son in Spanish.  It is without a doubt one of the best things you can do for his language development.

           7. The seventh resource is to ask around!

Ask on the multilingual Facebook groups, online, friends and family what they are using.  I am often surprised when I dig around Twitter and Instagram and see just how many resources there are out there.  We just have to dig and that digging process can be overwhelming.  If you know anyone else that is working on Spanish, see what is working for them and your children and I am sure you’ll get some great ideas as well from others that are doing the same kind of digging that you are!

Alright Maria, I hope you found these resources helpful and that you get a good start for some ideas.

As the one working on the target language in my home, I know how hard this process can be and I know that you will certainly enjoy those resources to the max when you get your hands on it.

If you have a question that you’d like answered on the show, leave me a message on the Bilingual Avenue contact page.

You can check out the resources to this episode at

May you have fun travels on your language journey. Hope to see you again on the Avenue.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_120.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Lorraine Ladish about the challenges of raising bilingual children.  She shares her particular struggles while also providing great advice and perspective on overcoming common challenges when raising bilingual children. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_119.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

On this episode, a father wonders what language policy would work best for his family. Should they consider the Minority Language at Home strategy to increase the exposure? Or should they give the One Person, One Language strategy a shot?

I share my thoughts on what is more important quantity or quality of exposure!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_118.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Kimberly Scanlon about some of her favorite strategies to promote language development in toddlers! She shares wonderful ideas to help our children express themselves and have fun with language.

Kimberly chats with us about:

Her professional background and how much she enjoys work with parents of children birth to three year olds;
Her book My Toddler Talks all about how to build communication skills in toddlers;
How play and language development go hand in hand for children;
What parents can take away from observing their child play with their toys;
The benefit of creating a predictable routine for children and how they can boost language;
The value of doing silly routines with younger children;
The benefits of speaking to your child in a sing song manner;
How giving your child choices instead of open ended questions can help to get your child talking;
How anticipation can get your child to use more of their vocabulary;
Some of the mistakes she sees parents make when trying to help their children speak;
The importance of asking for help if you have any concerns about your child’s speech and language development;
What types of goals parents should make for their children’s language development;
Her latest book, “Learning to Read is a Ball”;
Her advice to stay hopeful on the language journey!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_117.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I tell listeners about the Raising Global Citizens at home Online Summit!  This is a summit hosted by Multicultural Kids Blog with topics all about what parents can do to help their children understand the world around them! 

The agenda for the summit is as follow:


Day 1: Why is it important to raise global citizens?


Day 2: How TRAVEL supports global citizenship


Day 3: How FOOD connects us in a global society


Day 4: How ARTS and CRAFTS promote global citizens


Day 5: How PLAY encourageS global citizenship


Day 6: The importance of MEDIA, APPS AND BOOKS


Day 7: The role of LANGUAGE in raising global citizens

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_116.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, Dolores shares with us the importance of putting ourselves out there when raising bilingual children.  By stepping out of our comfort zone we can connect with other bilingual families and expand our network of support and exposure!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_115.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:02am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I answer a listener’s question and give her tips on how she can teach her son the gender rules associated with grammar.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_114.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:49am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Dr. Marnie Ginsberg, the leader of Reading Simplified.  She shares tips on how we can teach our children to read and develop their reading comprehension all while maintaining a love for reading.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_113.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this  episode of Bilingual Avenue, I answer a question regarding the impact of having a nanny who s peaks the community language on an infant and give strategies the nanny can use to foster language development for the target language.  If you have a little one one or younger, you are sure to get some really helpful tips!!!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_112.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, Elisabeth Alvarado shares her journey as a non-native bilingual mother.  She shares her challenges and her successes and shares wonderful tips for parents raising kids in a language that is not the parent’s mother tongue.

On this podcast, Elisabeth shares with us:

-How she  fell in love with Spanish;
-How languages are managed in her home with the Minority Language at Home strategy;
-How awkward it felt at first to speak a non-native language to her children the first day her son was born;
-How she worked through that first fork in the road where she had to chose between English & Spanish;
-How the effort paid off and now speaking Spanish is an engrained  habit;
-How books have been helpful to add vocabulary to her days  with her children;
-How she  is preparing for when  her children get to the point where they may prefer to speak Spanish to each other;
-Some funny  interactions they have had with others when they are all together as a family;
-A proud parenting moment with family members in Peru while chatting on Skype;

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_111.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:11am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I share 5 tips (plus a bonus one!) to help non-native speakers help bilingual parents! We cover different strategies to be very intentional on how to add exposure and how to learn more language to keep up with our kids!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_110.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Patricia Zaballos, author of Workshops Work!: A Parent’s Guide to Facilitating Writer’s workshops for Kids.  She shares so much insightful information to help our children become writers from a young age.  She breaks down how children really learn to write and lets us know about her very useful blog!  Get ready to be inspired and learn how you can get started with writing at home right away!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_109.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I give 5 tips to a family that is looking for ways to provide additional exposure to Portuguese for their son.  One option they are strongly considering is switching to speaking Portuguese at certain times of the day.  I give her some feedback on that idea and provide a few more strategies.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_108.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I interview book author and bilingual mama, Mariana Llanos.  She discusses her language journey including the challenges she has faced to help her children achieve Spanish fluency.  She also chats with us a bit about her books available in English and Spanish.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_107.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:28am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I share with you four fun and easy strategies to get your children to understand and use the past tense in your target language.  We focus on leveraging the power of modeling and create simple routines to encourage children to use the correct grammar structures. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_106.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I chat with Kelly Serrano and discuss strategies for promoting an appreciation for reading and writing. Kelly is full ideas for parents of bilingual children on how to support their development of these literacy skills and get the most out of the language journey!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_105.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I discuss the importance of setting family language goals.  I describe the types of goals you can consider setting.  We also chat about The Bilingual Journal and how it can help you on the language journey!

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_104.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode Bilingual Avenue, I interview Emma from to chat about her multilingual family.  Her family languages include German, English and Hungarian and Romanian! She discusses with us how her family has been able to infuse culture into their everyday lives and the role it has played for learning languages. 

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_103.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

On this episode of Bilingual Avenue, I answer a question from a mother who feels that a language barrier is forming between her and her daughter.  She speaks the minority language with her daughter and she worries that her 3 year old's lack of fluency is creating a distance between them.  I share my thoughts on how at the end of the day what our children really need is parenting.  Language is just one of the many aspects of parenting.

Direct download: Bilingual_Avenue_102.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT