Thursday, March 18, 2010

Raising Bilingual, Bicultural Kids

A little over one year ago, two Latina moms, who had recently retired from TV and print journalism, decided to share their journey of bilingual parenting--roadblocks and all!--through SpanglishBaby, an online community dedicated to the joys and concerns of raising bilingual children. Their fast-growing blog offers something new everyday to parents and teachers interested in bilingualism, with content organized in categories such as "Daily Learning", "Ask an Expert", "Must Reads", "Your Story", and even a "Forum" where readers can connect and share stories.

As new mothers, Roxana Soto and Ana Flores realized that, in spite of what demographics would suggest, there was great misinformation and few resources for parents determined to raise bilingual, bicultural children in the US. And that's how SpanglishBaby was born.

According to Soto, Spanglish Baby's first year has been full of both challenges and surprises. Among the former she cites the typical trials of starting a blog: building consistent traffic and creating fresh and interesting content. A loyal readership has emerged over the past months and, to celebrate this and its successful first year, Soto and Flores completely redesigned the blog, allowing readers to navigate the site more easily and to have a more participatory role. They've also added five regular contributors who, according to the editors, provide fresh perspectives on bilingual parenting on a weekly basis.

"We're also working on a major campaign through which we hope to bring bilingual resources in the form of books, toys and games to deserving schools in need," adds Soto.

For their second year, Soto would also like to increase SpanglishBaby's male readership and, hopefully, add a male contributor to its weekly lineup.

For the rest, Soto and Flores hope SpanglishBaby continues to be the community they envisioned from the beginning: a place where parents raising bilingual/bicultural children can feel supported, understood and welcomed to participate and share.

Keep up the great work, ladies!


Roxana said...

Thanks so much for the write up, Lydia!

We invite of La Bloga readers to come visit us and to let others who might be raising bilingual and bicultural children know about SpanglishBaby!

If any of you have any suggestions or recommendations, we'd love to hear them too, so please go ahead and let us know!

Boca Beth said...

I have been following Ana and Roxana since the inception of (or pretty darn close!) and absolutely love and appreciate the community they have created and continue to nurture.

Thank you so much for letting others know about them Lydia as it will only improve the communication of our world as we all strive to raise bilingual (and beyond!) children.