What's it Like to Request a HaBilNet Consultation?

Topics, Consultants & Feedback

Nina Schwöbel

H aBilNet is short for Harmonious Bilingual Network. We aim to encourage a harmonious way of using various combinations of languages in all parts of society and especially in bilingual families. We offer a consultation service to families who have questions or doubts about their bilingual journey or just need someone with expertise in this field to talk things through. All HaBilNet consultants have long professional experience in working with bilingual families. Our team includes top researchers as well as seasoned practitioners.

To Bilingual Families

There are many reasons to be speaking several languages in your family. And there are many difficulties or just questions that might arise from your individual situation. Like other families who have requested consultations with us, you…

  • may want help in planning ahead and thinking about how to start a bilingual family;
  • may want to discuss how things are going in your family language planning to find reassurance and peace of mind;
  • are concerned because your child isn't communicating the way you would like or expect and you want to understand why;
  • are looking for more ideas on how to strengthen your family's minority language.

No matter what the issue is, let's try and talk about it.

Consultations

Our team offers consultations in English, German, French, Dutch, Japanese and Spanish – please let us know your preference. Depending on the questions you have and your language preference, we will forward your request to one of our consultants. They will then get in touch with you directly. So far, HaBilNet consultations are free of charge.
If you are part of a bilingual family and have any questions or doubts about your situation, please feel free to request a consultation here.

Some of the families from across the globe who experienced a HaBilNet consultation sent us some feedback that we would like to share in order to give an impression of what a consultation might offer.
Request a Consultation

Meet our International Team of Consultants

Feedback we received (shortened)

I found it to be really helpful. […] the consultant's continued emphasis on creating a need to use the target language was very helpful. I had spent a lot of time focusing on exposure, assuming that it would bring about a need to use the language, but the consultant emphasized the need to create that need.

Stefanie, USA

[…] a very fruitful discussion. The consultant helped to look at my kids' linguistic issues from a broader perspective. I really enjoyed our conversation.
Thank you and your colleagues for your work!

Kuanysh, Japan

[…] ジェニスさんのお子さんと、私の子どもの年もあまり変わらないということで、助言を聞きやすかったように思います。
また、子どもに課題を押し付けがちでしたが、自分自身でもいろいろと勉強していくことや変えていく点が見えました。
スイスの継承後教育はまだまだ発展途上だと私は思っていますので、その点について自分がトライできそうなことの助言ももらえました。
[…] まずは、自分で行動してみる。
新たなスタートを切ることができそうです。
日本語で相談サービスを受けることができたのはとてもよかったです。
ありがとうございました。

Someone, Switzerland

[The consultant] gave me tactical things/ideas to implement with my child. Also, the consultant helped me understand the larger trajectory of the bilingual journey and really see all the potential I currently have in ways I can help my child grow in his Hindi development.
I'm so grateful to your organization and to your consultant for this service. I didn't even know something like this existed and could be of such tremendous help to me. But now I've experienced the benefit of learning from someone else's bilingual journey. And that is truly invaluable.

Deepti Gupta, Los Angeles, CA

It was an incredibly valuable hour, where the conversation allowed me to reframe our situation. My mindset was changed from seeing [a bilingual upbringing] as a personal and daunting challenge to one that can be enjoyed by the whole family. It was simply no less than very welcome therapy for me and hugely helpful. I would pay for further consultations.

Geirmund, UK

I am fully bilingual in German and English, having grown up in Germany with an OPOL [note: one person, one language] environment. I now reside in the United States and am a freelance writer in English. Being bilingual has always felt like an enormous gift to me, and I know how hard my parents – particularly my mother – worked to make it possible for me to learn two languages to this degree. But still I wasn't prepared for how difficult it would feel to pass on this same gift to my own children. I am so grateful to have been able to troubleshoot with the consultant. […] Most importantly, the consultant provided some outside acknowledgement for my hard work and successes, which gave me a much-needed boost.

Olivia, USA

Thanks to HabilNet I could talk to an expert directly and ask about our particular issues. […] The greatest outcome of the interview: although I received plenty of entirely new information, the greatest benefit was the discovery that the knowledge I already had started to make sense and now I see a certain logic in it. I checked our family language patterns and got inspired in many ways. […] I received great support about raising a bilingual child with speech problems. It helps me face the doubts and inappropriate opinions with more ease.

Zuzana, Czech Republic

I really enjoyed this opportunity to discuss my doubts and frustrations about this bilingual journey with my family. The consultant was very professional and very helpful, suggesting different modifications to my family routine, resources and a shift to evolve from bilingual children to bilingual family, reshaping our context and reality. I am infinitely grateful for the consultant's time.

Silvia, UK

Thank You!

HaBilNet would like to thank its consultants for offering a great service, its team for making all this possible and of course all of you who requested a consultation and gave permission to share your feedback.

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Like so many other parents world wide, you are probably stuck at home with your children during the current COVID-19 crisis. It is a difficult time for everyone. Check out this blog article to learn how this may be also be a time of opportunity for your bilingual family.

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Yes, it is important to talk a lot to children in two languages to support their bilingualism. But what about reading and writing in two languages? Find out in this blog by HaBilNet member and consultant Janice Nakamura.

The HaBilNet Family Language Policies colloquium at GURT 2020

This colloquium brings together perspectives on family language policies from different parts of the world and from different disciplines. Check out its virtual format here (featuring Annick De Houwer, Michelle Mingyue Gu, Simona Montanari, Janice Nakamura, and Nikolay Slavkov).

Supporting Bilingualism in Families, Day Care Centers and Schools

Bilingualism is one of four major themes that the Association for Binational Families and Partnerships deals with. In this inspiring interview, Maria Ringler speaks from the Association's headquarters about supporting multilingual families, an exciting reading project for day care centers, and about her experiences with political lobbying for bilingual education.

Supporting Bilingualism in Families, Day Care Centers and Schools

Bilingualism is one of four major themes that the Association for Binational Families and Partnerships deals with. In this inspiring interview, Maria Ringler speaks from the Association's headquarters about supporting multilingual families, an exciting reading project for day care centers, and about her experiences with political lobbying for bilingual education.

This Is the Secret to Success in Raising a Bilingual Child

Want to know the secret to success in raising a child that is actively bilingual? Find out in this blog post by HaBilNet member and consultant Adam Beck.

The HaBilNet Family Language Policies colloquium at GURT 2020

This colloquium brings together perspectives on family language policies from different parts of the world and from different disciplines. Check out its virtual format here (featuring Annick De Houwer, Michelle Mingyue Gu, Simona Montanari, Janice Nakamura, and Nikolay Slavkov).

Taking advantage of staying at home with your children during the COVID-19 crisis

Like so many other parents world wide, you are probably stuck at home with your children during the current COVID-19 crisis. It is a difficult time for everyone. Check out this blog article to learn how this may be also be a time of opportunity for your bilingual family.

Telling stories, writing bilingual picture books, and more adventures with the Book Pirates

The projects of the Book Pirates aim at enabling children and young people to experience literature creatively and independently. One of their numerous projects is about bilingual picture books written by children and for children.

Learning how to Read and Write in Two Languages

Yes, it is important to talk a lot to children in two languages to support their bilingualism. But what about reading and writing in two languages? Find out in this blog by HaBilNet member and consultant Janice Nakamura.

HaBilNet Travel Awards to attend GURT

Congratulations to Sally Rachel Cook and Nishita Grace Isaac for receiving HaBilNet Travel Awards to attend the 2020 Georgetown University Round Table, even though it ended up taking place virtually.

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