Post by Seth on Sept 25, 2018 23:04:37 GMT 9
My name is Seth Tuengel, I am the proud father of a near 4 year old who is the progeny of an American father (moi) and his bilingual Quebecois mother. We are now separated but share custody of Tristan. We separated after his 2nd birthday and for most of his 3rd year he was primarily in his mother's custody as I agreed to have him less since he was young and she was struggling with the thought of seeing him only half the time. He has grown up primarily surrounded by French speakers (although she is bilingual she speaks only French to him and most of her immediate family speaks only French to each other) both at home and his French language daycare. He has almost no English-speaking friends. I made the mistake of responding to him in French up until his 3rd birthday when the light bulb clicked and I decided that I should only speak English to him even if he mostly only speaks French to me. Now I am seeing that he understands almost everything I say to him in English, he repeats and uses more small English language phrases and he sings or reads along when we look at books together in English that he has heard enough to know the words. But I am anxious to know what I can do to foster his ability even more.
I was prompted to join this site today though because his daycare director (it's a small family daycare so "director" is a bit formal) says that his language in his primary language, French, is falling behind in comparison to other kids his age. My ex-wife understands him perfectly when he speaks to her in French but apparently at daycare he uses more non-verbal communication and when he speaks French it is sometimes hard to understand him. I am seeing a speech therapist with him at our health center on Tuesday to see what else we can do but I am understandably anxious. Not sure how much this has to do with his learning abilities and how much it has to do with him being a bilingual child especially since it's his major language where he is falling behind. I look forward to hearing from all of you and getting more resources and ideas to make sure I do my part to keep him on the same level as other kids his age. Otherwise, he is a beautiful, social, joyful boy and I couldn't be prouder!