This study investigates how family language policies are shaped and developed in five Indonesian scholars’ families who live in England. More specifically, it analyses parents’ attitudes towards children’s bilingualism and second language development focusing on the investigation of factors that can influence parental language ideologies and the patterns of language practices within the families. Data were obtained from participant observations, fieldnotes, and semi-structured interviews. All the data were then analysed using inductive analysis approaches proposed by Cohen et al. (2011) and Thomas (2006) which include reading the transcripts several times, identifying the texts related to the purpose of the study, and deciding the categories. The findings reveal that children’s ability to acquire a new language becomes the driving force behind parental language ideologies. Additionally, parental experience, children’s education, and children’s language choice also contribute to the shaping of parental language ideologies. Based on the patterns of family language practices used by participant families, our findings show that the longer they live in England, the less Indonesian they use in their families’ interaction. This can happen as the children gradually develop their language proficiency. However, evidence from this inquiry indicates that parents’ consistency in giving their children exposure to Indonesian can be the determining factor in the success of children’s bilingualism.


family language policy, bilingualism, parental language ideologies, language practices, early childhood education

Author Bio(s)

Aris Bahari Rizki is a lecturer at Universitas Islam Negeri Sunan Ampel Surabaya, Indonesia. His research interests include applied linguistics, bilingualism, English language teaching, and Education.

Muchamad Sholakhuddin Al Fajri is currently a lecturer in English language and linguistics at Universitas Airlangga, Indonesia. His research interests include applied linguistics, corpus linguistics, language and media, English for academic purposes, and English for specific purposes. He has published research articles in various journals including The Qualitative Report, Discourse and Interaction, Journal of Language and Education, and SAGE Open. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to m-sholakhuddin-al-fajri@vokasi.unair.ac.id.


We would like to express our very great appreciation to Dr. Elizabeth Chilton for her valuable and constructive suggestions during the development of this research.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.





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