When I read the news that Ute Limacher-Riebold Ph.D., Language Consultant & Intercultural Communication Expert, and also selected researcher and contributor at PEaCH – EU Project, was launching her very own Ute’s International Lounge Academy with courses for parents raising bilingual children and multilingual children, I was thrilled! Having an academic background in linguistic studies myself, trilingual kids who are fast approaching 9 and 6 years of age, writing and publishing bilingual books for children, and being active online in groups and websites about raising bilingual children, I knew that what she was about to present to the public would be gold.

E.N.J.O.Y. Raising Children with Multiple Languages for parents of 0 to 4 year old children is her very first online, self-paced course for parents, with more to follow. Now that I have attended it, I can honestly say that I would recommend it to ALL parents who are just about to start their journey of raising bilingual children. Not only that, but it should be referred to as a “must-attend course” alongside the other pre-natal courses we attend as parents, and information to be handed out in leaflets at hospitals/doctor’s offices, etc depending on what’s available in each country during those early pregnancy visits. My first kid was born in a country with a multilingual population/two official languages and courses like this one would have been of tremendous value to new parents.

In this course you will learn so many fascinating things about your child’s development, how to better assist him/her, understand what’s expected and normal, and what to do depending on the different situations. The very first years are crucial, and it’s paramount for us as parents to invest in understanding what we do, why, and how we can help our children to set solid foundations for their future. Above all, you will realize that you’re not alone, there is a way, and there are tools and knowledgeable, kind people along the way to support us.

Here are some of the reasons why I would opt in to learn from Ute Limacher-Riebold and trust her as a teacher:

-Ute was raised in Italy by German parents
-She’s raising her bilingual children in the Netherlands
-She has lived in different countries
-She was raised “abroad” and so are her children
-She speaks many languages and she is still, actively and with intention, learning new languages
-Her kids are now teens who speak many languages
-She has an extensive academic background in the field
-She has taught at many levels, including at university level (University of Zurich)
-She has vast hands-on experience
-She’s an active researcher
-She’s an expert who, like all true experts, appreciates that knowledge and research never stop, that there’s always so much more to learn. I find that she’s carving a new path for families like ours.
-She’s open-minded, sensitive, and passionate, and her approach and stand when it comes to language learning is that of approaching all humans, including, of course, our children with respect, kindness, and empathy, looking at the bigger picture – not one size fits all.
-Above all, what I personally appreciate the most, is that she’s one of the few in the public eye who talks openly about seeing language more holistically. Ute recognizes that language acquisition and language learning are not just about transferring linguistic skills to our children: language goes far beyond just that, and choices should not be made to the detriment of our relationship with our children. Language is an intrinsic part of their sense of identity, well-being, healthy emotional development, and healthy attachment to their caregivers at first, and to society later. She discusses all this and so much more in detail in her course.

In the course, you will find 16 lessons in the 5 E.N.J.O.Y. Modules (Enter Well, Navigate, Join, Organize, Yes). Each lesson consists of a video, a short description, and pages to read and complete in the Workbook. The Workbook is very extensive, about 100 pages long, and there’s also a private Facebook group for extra support. Clearly, a lot of effort and care has been poured into this project and all materials are of high quality.

Thank you so much Ute for investing so much time and effort to create this and share your knowledge with us.

Click here to check it out.

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