Bilingual Turkish Children in the Netherlands and the Relationship Between their First Language and Mainstream Language

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Demirel G.

KEFAD, vol.20, no.3, pp.1312-1339, 2019 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 20 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Journal Name: KEFAD
  • Page Numbers: pp.1312-1339
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


In the speech of a bilingual or multilingual individual, the effects of each language can be seen on the other

language(s) that she/he produces. First language (L1) effects can be seen in the second language (L2), and L2

effects can be seen in L1 in different skill areas. In second language acquisition studies, it is important to take into

consideration the relationship between the languages and how they are learned. Today, an increasing number of

schools are challenged by learners from different linguistic backgrounds who have different prior literary

experiences. Although bilingualism of minority children is considered to be a disadvantage, related research

reveals that bilingual students who are competent in both languages attain a high level of achievement at school.

This study considers the conditions under which bilinguals and multi-linguals acquire languages and examines

how L1 affects the acquisition of other languages, how the children’s first-language literacy affects their second-

language reading skills, and the attitude towards bilingualism and multilingualism. This paper illustrates how

the first language plays an important role in the acquisition of mainstream languages for immigrant children by

investigating the language skills of bilingual children of Turkish immigrants in the Netherlands.