Praise is an important factor and driver in education, whether mono or multilingual.
I was wondering what little praises you tell your bilingual monkeys about their ability to speak several languages? Children often dislike being different, and I think it’d be interesting to share our praises to help our monkeys value their linguistic capacities.
To get you started, here is what I said when my daughter got picked on at school for speaking ml: I told her she has a special gift, like the fairies in the books. She can speak several languages and can help others who can’t understand one of these languages, like Nanny Plum in one of Ben and Holly’s episodes. I saw my daughter smile at the idea of being like a fairy, and I think it cheered her up at a time she did not feel good about being different.
What a lovely idea! I have just been telling my daughter how WELL she speaks ml2 (the other day she said that mamá and papa spoke ml1 and ml2, that grandma spoke ml2 and that she only spoke ML, so I've been working on making her realise that she does/can indeed speak the mls!), but maybe I need to get more creative!
My daughter also very much wants to be like other children, so this is definitely something where we need to help foster pride.
We are lucky that everyone in our area speaks 2 or 3 languages. So my daughter thinks this is the norm. However, at first when she would get reluctant sometimes or complain about learning French, I would say how lucky she is. How she would be so thankful later in life and how I wish I had the same opportunity as a child. I explained it's a lot more difficult to learn another language as a child. I think it helps that her best friend who moved to France also speaks French, and could potentially forget most of her English! She has been there a few months and she visited us a week ago and I could see she already forgot some of her English. My daughter and her spoke English and French together this time, so it was not a problem. I think if most kids speak only one language, I would emphasize the benefits of knowing more then one language. Traveling the world (you can show images of different places to travel that speak the language), communicating with others, etc.
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Marisa: "Victory moment:" My almost 4-year-old daughter told me yesterday in the ml (rough translation): "mom, there's something wrong with the cartoons, can you fix it, please?"... she was accidentally watching TV in the ML! So I gladly obliged
Jan 18, 2020 4:15:02 GMT 9
Amy: Awww bless her, Marisa!!! That was so cute!! <3
Jan 18, 2020 5:25:44 GMT 9
Adam Beck: Marisa, give that little minority language lover a big hug from me!
Jan 18, 2020 8:04:49 GMT 9
Mayken: We're at Harry Potter Book Night at the English bookshop in Paris. The activities are all in French but my daughter teamed up for the treasure hunt with a girl who also speaks ouf ml German!
Feb 8, 2020 3:50:49 GMT 9
Amy: Was stunned to hear eldest had an anglophone (ml) accent when she began to read in the ML this afternoon!! Didn't last more than a paragraph until her brain switched language, but chuffed mum here!!
Mar 7, 2020 23:05:49 GMT 9
Mayken: My daughter found the secret stash of ml books I'd bought at the closure sale of the ml book store two months ago and hidden away for later. Guess it's a good time for new books now, right?
Mar 18, 2020 5:29:38 GMT 9
Caro C.: My baby (16mo) perfectly knows what "hi5" means and readily shows her hand even when we are not showing our hand first. It feels like the first minor blossom of the bilingual seed.
Jun 1, 2020 13:05:36 GMT 9
Adam Beck: Nice, Caro! Give her a high-five from me! And I look forward to hearing about many more happy developments to come!
Jun 8, 2020 15:12:21 GMT 9