Bilingual Program: Children Language Development

Topics: Second language, Language education, Multilingualism Pages: 5 (1372 words) Published: June 28, 2013


This paper discussed on bilingual program that become one of the reasons parents choose schools for their children and its effect on children language development. As the impact of globalization English become a necessity for everyone in exploring and finding new things across the globe. Educational institutions see this as an opportunity to introduce bilingual program as a respond to the demand of society.

Keywords: Bilingualism, bilingual program, dual program

As the era of globalization is happening in every country in the world, foreign language become a necessity for today's society. One implication of globalization is the emergence of new global opportunities on one hand and competition on individual aspects of lives not to mention nation on the other. One aspect of communication that is important and necessary for global competition is mastery of English and for that reason human resource in Indonesia needs to be prepared early. In respond to that demand, many educational institutions provide foreign language education for children includes bilingual program. Bilingual Definition

Bilingualism is related to the use of two languages or two language codes (Chaer, 2010: 84). Bilingualism is due to language contact between two groups of different languages, it exists in every country in the world, in all classes of society, and in all age groups. Therefore, it is difficult to find people who truly monolingual because language society are inseparable to other language societies (Grosjean, 1982: 1). The definition of bilingualism among experts has its own weakness. Therefore according to Grosjean there is no acceptable definition of bilingualism in general. Bilingual Phenomena

Schools that provide bilingual programs mean using two languages in their educational activities. Language that is often used in the bilingual schools in Indonesia is Bahasa and English. By applying the concept of bilingual schools and parents expect children to be more proficient in foreign language, especially English. Currently schools in Indonesia began to implement bilingual programs as a language learner program development. This program was in elementary, middle, and high school with a focus on improving English language skills in children.

Bilingual program today has been frequently used by parents as a focus of attention in finding proper school for their children. The existence of bilingual programs is the main variable that is considered by parents deal with the quality of a school for their children. This makes the parents enthusiastically try to maximize their children foreign language skills by putting them to school or to class with bilingual program. This phenomenon of English at school then makes Bahasa as their mother tongue and their first language being neglected, not only by school but also by parents. Many parents are more proud if their children receive a high mark on English subject than Bahasa. General Issues of Foreign Language in Indonesia

Based on that fact, some problems can occur. Start with question whether the bilingual education program in Indonesia is proper enough in language education for children given the circumstances of the decline in respect for their mother tongue, which is Bahasa. Next problem deals with internalize opinion of society that states that English proficiency is more important than Bahasa in the era of globalization and the challenges of vocational world. Another problem is the lack of love for the young generation toward their Bahasa. The language that they used in their daily life either kids or teenagers has been mixed with the language and style of foreign country. Often the children concept of ability and interest in Bahasa is lower than the ability and interests of children to English. They feel more educated and have a higher social class if they used English in everyday conversation. Problems...

References: Chaer, Abdul dan Leonie Agustina. 2010. Sosiolinguistik Perkenalan Awal. Jakarta: Penerbit Rineka Cipta.
Grosjean, Francois. 1982. Life with Two Languages. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Macnamara, John. 1969. “How can One Measure the Extent of a Person’s Bilingual Proficiency? in L.G.Kelly (ed.), Description and Measurement of Bilingualism. Hlm. 80—119. Toronto: University of Toronto.
Bloomfield, Leonard. 1933. Language. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
Sutioso, Andy. 2006. Bahasa Asing Dalam Pendidikan Anak kita.
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