Bilingual children more likely to stutter
I’ve always been a strong advocate of raising children bilingually, as it is nothing short of a gift later on in life. The ability to speak more than one language (no matter which languages are involved) can benefit a person when they least expect it, and young children learn multiple languages much faster and more easily than older children and adults.
Because of this belief, it came as quite a surprise to me to read that a London study has shown that children who are bilingual before the age of 5 (English and a second language spoken at home) seem to be more likely to develop a stutter by the time they start school, and are less likely to successfully overcome the stutter by the age of 12.
Monolingual (single language-speaking) children, and those who learned a second language after the age of five, seem to be able to more successfully overcome their impediments.
There seems to be no difference in academic performance between mono- and bilingual children. However, the authors of the study have suggested that teaching a child a second language after the age of 5 may reduce the occurrence of stuttering, or increase the chances of early recovery later in childhood.
Full article (including a lot of statistics) here.