• info@ukrmova.iul-nasu.org.ua
  • +38 (044)-278-12-09
  • Print ISSN 1682-3540
  • e-ISSN 2707-5249
» Journal Issues » 2019 » Journal Ukrainian Language - №2 (70) 2019 » Bilingual children: world experience and Ukrainian reality

Bilingual children: world experience and Ukrainian reality

Journal Ukrainian Language – №2 (70) 2019
UDC 81’23

Olga Shevchuk-Kliuzheva
PhD, Senior lecturer at Ukrainian language department at National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla Academy”
2 Skovorody St., Ukraine 04655, Kyiv
E-mail: o.kliuzheva@gmail.com

Heading: Researches
Language: Ukrainian

Abstract: The paper outlines language situation in our country in the context of occurrence of various forms of child’s Ukrainian-Russian bilingualism and provides linguistic description of the phenomenon of bilingualism. It is examined the psycholinguistic perspectives of individual non-monolingualism in early childhood. The authors analyse the features of the classification of child bilingualism in the context of world practice and present typical models of language behaviour of Ukrainian older pupils. It is drawn attention to spreading of a specific type of bilingualism, namely, the dualingualism, which is peculiar to a certain category of bilingual children of preschool and primary school age in a situation of informal communication, when each participant of communicative act retains his dominant language. At the same time, the communicative goal of such act is being achieved. The paper defines the specifics of the formation of Ukrainian-Russian child’s bilingualism in the light of changing the priority of the primary and secondary societies for a child. It is specified the necessity of reviewing the strategy of language behaviour of a certain category of children due to spontaneous acquirement of the contact (Russian) language. This fact has a direct influence on children’s Ukrainian speech.

It is paid attention to the notion “bilingual language personality” and covered some aspects of worldview of bilingual children. In terms of language worldbuilding of Ukrainian-Russian bilingual children, the authors draw attention to the fact that comprehensive presence of Ukrainian language is complicated by powerful communicative influence of Russian language. That is why, active Ukrainian-Russian bilingual children rather often do not feel the difference between the related language codes that in practice results in spreading of mixed forms of speech (surzhik). The speech of Ukrainian-Russian bilingual children should be actively studied in order to make adjustments to children’s language behaviour exactly at an early age through educational mechanisms, develop recommendations for working-out of language resistance, as well as to form, first of all, coordinated rather than mixed bilingualism.

Keywords: language situation, language policy, bilingual children, closely related bilingualism bilingualism.


  1. Vygotsky, L. (1983). The question of multilingualism in childhood. Problems of development of the psyche. Vоl. 3. Moscow (in Rus.).2. Danilevskaya, O. (2013). Types of Linguistic Behavior of Kyiv Students. Ukrainian Language, 2, 56 – 67 (in Ukr.).
  2. Bilingual children have a better knowledge of communication skills. URL: http://www.osvita.org.ua/news/49403.html (Accessed 10.04.2019).
  3. Armon-Lotem,, De Jong, J., Meir, N. (2015). Assessing Multilingual Children Disentangling Bilingualism from Language Impairment. British Library. P. 376 (in Eng.).
  4. Evrin,, Osgood, C. (1954). Second language learning and bilingualism, Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, Supplement to XLIX (in Eng.).
  5. Lambert, W.E. (1972). Language, psychology, and culture. Palo Alto, CA, US: Stanford U. Press (in Eng.).
  6. Language policies and early bilingual education in Sweden. Centre for Research on Bilingualism, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism. URL: http://www.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:726839/ FULLTEXT01.pdf (Accessed 10.04.2019).
  7. Lincoln,C. (1979). Dual-lingualism: Passive bilingualism in action. P. 22, 65 72. Te Reo (in Eng.).
  8. Saunders, (1988). Bilingual children: from birth to teens. Multilingual Matters Ltd. P. 274 (in Eng.).