Your child is not “confused”. Children don’t start distinguishing the languages till around 3-4 years of age. My eldest daughter only did when she turned 4. Until then, like any child, they go for the easy way out of things (use their hands to eat instead of the cutlery for example); meaning that when it comes to languages they mix them to be able to communicate.
Yes, you can change strategy in the process. I did because OPOL did not work for us and we went for ml@home. My eldest was 4 and my youngest a couple of months old. We told my eldest daughter it was a new house rule, that everyone must abide by it and it went down pretty well (for the whole story if you are interested in the details, see my guest post at Bilingual Monkeys). This change of strategy saved our bilingual journey.
If you prefer speaking ml (Thai) to your son then do. He will pick up the English (ML) from the community and don’t worry: the ML is VERY powerful. He is bound to pick it up what with daycare, friends, etc.
Children tend to use the ML with you when they realise you speak it, they don't want to make the effort to use the ml (pragmatic little beings ). That was exactly the case with my eldest. I found that creating the ml@home rule helped to fight this off. She is expected to make the effort to use her mls and she knows it. In fact, a lot of parents meet the same issue: when the child starts school, they usually bring the ML home and start refusing to use the ml.
If you want to raise your children to be bilingual, I would strongly recommend that you read Adam's book Maximize Your Child's Bilingual Ability; it has a chapter that discusses the results of a study with the success rate per strategy if that interests you.
Hope this helps.
Edited to add: Time and Place - Could be used to start introducing the use of the ml at home. Some families do it over meal times and get good results. In Nellie ’s case, it got her passive English-speaking daughter to use the language over meal times and eventually got her to use it out of meal times too (her daughter now uses her ml 95% of the time with Nellie).
Mixing languages - from my personal experience I would advise against it: 1. Kids need a clear rule to understand and follow. 2. When kids know you speak the ML they are not willing to make the effort to use the ml and will revert to the ML. So I’m a bit skeptical as to the result. But that’s only my opinion.
***"Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - Oscar Wilde***
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Agnese: Thank you! After this setback I feel stronger than ever! The same day of the incident I ordered plenty of books in the ml on Amazon and I'm reading every day new research on bilingualism and bilingual education. I'm ready to defend my goal! Thanks
Jul 19, 2018 18:37:58 GMT 9
Agnese: Thank you for the suggestion!
Jul 21, 2018 15:40:43 GMT 9
Mayken: My daughter met some inversed ML/ml kids today who live in our ml country. Their parents probably weren't thrilled they found n ML (for them) friend in their ml country. I'm sorry...a little bit.
Aug 7, 2018 2:07:34 GMT 9
Amy: Looks like the 3 weeks in ml1 country paid off: my ML mother reports my youngest would only speak ml1 to her! Lol Not sure ML childminder will be so happy when she returns... loool!
Aug 25, 2018 0:38:50 GMT 9
Mayken: Sounds like fun times ahead, Amy! Keep us posted.
Aug 27, 2018 23:15:08 GMT 9
Adam Beck: NEW! Something Strange Happened 2 Days After We Moved into Our New House (And Its Significance to Change and Transformation on the Bilingual Journey)buff.ly/2ww8WDD
Aug 31, 2018 10:30:39 GMT 9
Amy: Happiest bilingual mum in the world : the new lady who conducts activities in ml2 with my eldest just assessed her level as pretty much equivalent to that of a native ml2 child! After that awful back-to-school start, this is like music to my ears.
Sept 6, 2018 0:00:13 GMT 9
Wojtek: I've been thinking for a long time to write an update and hopefully, I will do it one day. My brother married a Russian woman. That was nice to see that my 5-year-old daughter could play with her and speak English together!
Sept 7, 2018 21:37:25 GMT 9
Wojtek: After some time, she ran up and told me: "She is speaking English!"
Sept 7, 2018 21:38:31 GMT 9
Adam Beck: Nice to hear your happy news, Wojtek! And congratulations to your brother and his bride! It sounds like they may have a bilingual child in their future, too! Cheers to you all!
Sept 7, 2018 21:58:17 GMT 9
Mayken: Victor's flashcards look amazing! I hope I'll win the giveaway - if not, I'll purchase a set for Christmas for sure. Thanks Adam for sharing these gems with us!
Sept 26, 2018 23:32:30 GMT 9
Marisa: Adam, I second Mayken's enthusiasm and gratitude for your posting about Victor's flashcards, they look amazing, thank you so much for the post! I already bought one set
Sept 30, 2018 10:25:51 GMT 9