Pros and cons of a bilingual household

Dec 24, 2019#CommuniTea Stories

North Richmond Community Health Speech Pathologist Nicola Dunn


👤 Nicola Dunn, Speech Pathologist

☕ Coffee/tea order: Cappuccino 


“I’m a bit of a coffee snob so I’m lucky there are such good choices near North Richmond. AU79 does an amazing coffee, otherwise, 3 Bags Full and Rowena Corner store are my usual go-to cafes. Coffee is one of the reasons I love Melbourne. I’ve been lucky enough to study in Germany and to work in the UK, however, the coffee doesn’t compare!

The experiences I gained working in different communities overseas were incredible. I worked as a speech pathologist in Birmingham in the UK for two years at a special school with children from many different cultural backgrounds. It was quite challenging, but really rewarding work. I helped children that couldn’t speak – they were hearing three different languages between home and school which is a real challenge for them.

I saw a speech pathologist as a child and it’s a big part of why I chose to become a speech pathologist for children.

At North Richmond Community Health, I get to work with families from diverse cultural backgrounds which is very stimulating and rewarding – I love it. Communication is really important in a child’s development, so we try and convey that message to our clients. I tell parents that literacy starts early and reading books with your child and going to the local library will really help your child’s development.

Also, raising your child bilingually has lots of benefits, but it’s important to remember that speaking to your child in your home language helps to form a rich emotional language base. My parents spoke both English and German at home so I can directly relate to the intricacies of being raised bilingually.”

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