Vietnamese in Australia protecting mother-tongue language hinh anh 1Dr. Tran Hong Van from Charles Sturt University of Australia (Photo: VNA)

Sydney (VNA) – Families play a crucial role in teaching the mother tongue to Vietnamese children abroad, according to Dr. Tran Hong Van from Charles Sturt University of Australia.

The 300,000-strong Vietnamese community makes up more than 1.2 percent of the Australian population, and Vietnamese is the fourth most spoken language in the country.

The Australian government has supported the community in maintaining their mother tongue through Vietnamese language schools.

However, Van said, it is not enough because children need to practise.

Citing results of Vietspeech, a research study by Charles Sturt University with funding from the Australian Research Council, she said parents play an important role in language teaching.

In addition, experts from the university have introduced Vietspeech Multilingual Children, a manual providing necessary information to serve Vietnamese language learning and teaching at home, Van said.

To raise public awareness of the issue, she has joined a Vietnamese language programme of the SBS Vietnamese channel since October 2021.

Van pointed out limited sources of Vietnamese textbooks abroad, and proposed the Vietnamese government provide free textbooks for overseas Vietnamese and sketch out programmes that focus on home teaching./.