This study of Scottish and Italian children who speak two languages, reported here by Science Daily, was not done with children with Down syndrome. However, the advantages and risks of learning more than one language have often been discussed by families from diverse ethnic backgrounds, or moving to new language environments. It would be very interesting to see if the results of the study would be replicated in children with Down syndrome.
The relatively small volume of literature about bilingual children with Down syndrome, and the experience of families suggests that learning more than one language is as good an idea for them as it is for other children.
- Raising children with Down syndrome to speak more than one language was published in our journal, Voice, in December 2010.