October is Bilingual Child Month


Yemeni American News

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. – Started in 2006, schools like Hamtramck Public Schools have celebrated the diversity that bilingual children bring to classrooms around the country. Known as Bilingual Child Month, the celebration of children who speak multiple languages lasts the entirety of October.

In a school district like Hamtramck, a month dedicated to most of its students can mean a lot. Its been estimated that as many as 29 languages and dialects are represented in Hamtramck’s school system. And for those who learn English in their time at school, it definitely comes with its challenges. Still, Hamtramck wants to celebrate those students, seeing them as an asset to the diversity in the district.

“At Hamtramck Public Schools, we believe Bilingual and Multilingual learners are an asset,” said Anne Clemente, an English Language Development Specialist with HPS. “The many languages spoken by our students and their families provide a connection to different cultures and a sense of communal belonging. Our Bilingual and Multilingual students bring their background, learned experiences, and traditions into our classrooms that create rich, multicultural learning experiences.”

But a dedicated month isn’t all of what the Hamtramck Public School district does for students. Clemente explains that the district continuously tries to work with its students on fostering a diverse environment.

“Hamtramck Public Schools continuously celebrates and recognizes the importance of bilingualism and multilingualism by embracing all types of literacy, cultivating and holding space for multicultural clubs and events in our buildings, providing communication in the primary languages of our families, promoting bilingual learning with our Arabic and Spanish class offerings, as well as having resources and texts that represent our students’ experiences, languages and cultures.”