Early Childhood Bilingualism: The Myths, Truths, and Implications in English Language Learning in Pontianak


  • Teddy Fiktorius Bina Mulia Senior High School Pontianak




language acquisition, bilingualism, monolingual brain, language impairment


The paper explicates the immediate concern of gaining a deeper insight of language acquisition in the early childhood bilingualism in the setting of Pontianak city, a multi-ethnic city located in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. It is written through descriptive method or library research to provide the readers, especially the parents and teachers with better insights into a basis for decision making about raising and educating children bilingually. The first part elaborates on four myths, namely the myth of the monolingual brain, the myth of time investment, the myth of bilingualism and language impairment; and the myth of minority language children. It is followed by the argumentative support by the experts in the fields based on the literature review. Next, discussions are presented as a whole, pointing out some of significant implications for parents and teachers. Finally, an overall conclusion of the paper coverage is provided.


Mishra, R. K. 2018.Bilingualism and Cognitive Control. Cham: Springer.

Quay, S. & Montanari, S. 2016. “Early Bilingualism: From Differentiation to the Impact of Family Language Practices”. In Elena Nicoladis and Simona Montanari (Eds.), Bilingualism Across the Lifespan: Factors Moderating Language Proficiency (pp. 34-55). Washington: American Psychological Association.

Ofelia, G. O. & Wei, L. 2014. Translanguaging: Language, Bilingualism and Education. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.

Romanowski, R. 2018. “Strategies of Communication in an NNB Family: On the Way to Bilingual Maintenance in a Monolingual Context”. In Piotr Romanowski and Małgorzata Jedynak (Eds.), Current Research in Bilingualism and Bilingual Education (pp. 3-22). Cham: Springer.

Wiseheart, M., Viswanathan, M. & Bialystok, E. 2014. “Flexibility in task switching by monolinguals and bilinguals”. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 1-6.

Carrillo, E. T. 2017. “Psychopathology and Bilingualism”. In Alfredo Ardila, Anna B. Cieślicka, Roberto R. Heredia, and Mónica Roselli (Eds.), Psychology of Bilingualism: The Cognitive and Emotional World of Bilinguals (pp. 227-258). Cham: Springer.

Rodríguez, M. V. 2015. “Families and Educators Supporting Bilingualism in Early Childhood”. School Community Journal, 25(2): 177-194.

Bahra, R. H. et al. 2014. “Bilingual Spelling Patterns in Middle School: It Is More Than Transfer”. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 1-19.

Verbeke, D. 2015. “Types of Bilingual Presentation in the English-Latin Terence”. In Jan Bloemendal (Ed.), Bilingual Europe Latin and Vernacular Cultures, Examples of Bilingualism and Multilingualism c. 1300–1800 (pp. 73-82). Leiden: Brill.

Hoshino, N. & Thierry, G. 2014. “Language Selection During Speech Production in Bilingual Speakers”. In Enlli Môn Thomas and Ineke Mennen (Eds.), Advances in the Study of Bilingualism (pp. 201-213). Croydon: Multilingual Matters.

Marschark, M., Knoors, H., and &, G. 2014. “Perspectives on Bilingualism and Bilingual Education for Deaf Learners”. In Marc Marschark, Gladys Tang, and Harry Knoors (Eds.), Bilingualism and Bilingual Deaf Education (pp. 445-477). New York: Oxford University Press.

Weimer, A.A. et al. 2015. “Desiring Dual Language Bilingual Education: One Community’s Perspectives on Past and Future Directions for Bilingual Learners”. Journal of Bilingual Education Research & Instruction, 17(1): 1-11.

Javor, R. 2016. “Bilingualism, Theory of Mind and Perspective-Taking: The Effect of Early Bilingual Exposure”. Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, 5(6): 143-148.