would bilingual education be too much burden for young kids?
Just want to get some opinions here.
our son is 17 months old and he is already picking up a lot of English words from daycare. At home, we are both native mandarin speakers and we speak both Mandarin and English to our son in a roughly 1:1 ratio. Right now, our son is mostly uttering English words now(baby version). I'd say 80-90% words he picked up so far is in English.
We often talk about whether our son should have more mandarin exposure. Because of its unique nature, the Chinese language requires much more time on reading and writing practise for kids to understand them. Most native Chinese speakers in mainland China learns to remember at least some of the most commonly used characters before they enter grade 1. I even began practiced writing a bit at Kindergarten.
My question is, do you think it's worth to make a child learn a heritage language which is so fundamentally different from English and requires so much effort? I've met many Chinese Americans and Chinese Canadians who apparently resent their experience of being forced to learn Chinese at youth while other kids go play video games at weekends. I really don't want to be that kind of parent. However, I also see a lot of people (including my wife) saying that bilingual is super important in the future and heritage languages should be a natural gift for kids from immigrant families.