Responding to this because I thought to report back to the site when I was in a good space on the language journey and feeling positive about both our efforts and outcomes. I think most of the times I've come looking for support before but am happy to say that right now everything is going great! I am so proud of Eloise (my three-year-old bilingual girl) who is now regularly code switching between mom and dad even when we are all hanging out together in the room. She'll regularly say things to mommy in English and then things to me in the target language. We are alone on the weekends when my wife works and she primarily uses the target language with me. I am so grateful for the support I receive from such sites as this.
Right now she is in a Spanish immersion preschool. I am hoping to get her in a dual language kindergarten in time. However, my next main concern is her entering the K-12 school system because I know that's when so many target language capabilities suffer. Hoping to get her into a dual language school at least until middle school (grade 6). But hey, let me ride this good feeling for a little bit!
Also, excited to see how the effects of hearing and see my oldest and I speak in the target language affect my newborn Benny (7 months). I'd imagine he'll learn quicker!
This is me--although I have ONLY spoken ml with my daughter, she still speaks ML language sometimes with me, especially if mom is around. Mother only speaks ML and I communicate with mom in ML too. My daughter is 2.5 and I never considered the "not responding" if my daughter speaks to me in ML just because I've always valued communication and what I perceive as validation...however, I am wondering if I need to "condition" more until she is 4 or 5. When my daughter is alone with me she definitely speaks more ml but still utilizes quite a bit of ML. All I do is repeat in ml, respond in ml, and sometimes I will ask her 'how does papi say it.' But clearly I don't want to ask her 'how does papi say it' every other sentence...hmm something to look into I guess.
My daughter has "the need" and "exposure" created at her preschool which is three half days a week. Other exposure is her time around me which is at least 30 percent of her waking hours. I really do wish she'd speak to me more in ml only, however sometimes I think she does so on purpose to want to include mommy. I'll have to take a look around at other posts to see the discussions in topic. I've read Adam's posts again about creating the need too.
Thanks for your quick reply! By the way, which language do you parents speak with each other? In our family, we speak ML (Finnish), but sometimes I still switch to English.
It feels natural also for me to speak my native language to my children. So far, I've seen in this forum / website articles and stories about speaking ml in ML environment meaning public (friends, street, shops, relatives). With this, I have never had problems, I do not feel embarrassed or weird. But when talking about the family environment, somehow it feels different to me. I feel that there is something missing all the time (to be specific, a COMMON LANGUAGE) that leads to the separate discussions / games / playing/ joking / etc and hence, lack of a feeling of belonging to ONE. Exactly this feeling has been disturbing me for a while now.
Have you ever had that feeling?
This is something my wife feels EXACTLY and I am hoping it gets better and better as we are only two and a half years into our first challenge and hence language goals.
Hi! Good to hear from you all too! Yes, since she entered ml preschool in August 2017 it has been a great plus having increased exposure, adults modeling and speaking the language, and friends her age that speak ml. I'm also excited that my son should be born in the next couple weeks and I feel like hearing me talk to him in ml will also help her see that it's just not her I speak ml with.
Want to chime in here for supportive reasons and to say I just this morning experienced more or less the same thing. I was naturally conversing with my daughter and she was whining about me opening the door. I simply suggested in ml (since I am the ml speaker in OPOL) that she could ask me nicely to open the door please. She says to me, "no porfavor, just please" which was for me the first time she distinguished between languages in that way! Before, it was always just how does papa say it and how does mom say it. Very interesting and also concerning. You are all not alone and it's helpful to know I'm not alone!
Didn't know how to respond in the moment so just thanked her for being polite (in ml) and kept moving on. Good thing is she currently has 3 four hour half-days in a ml-speaking-only preschool so I'm not alone on ml exposure for the next year at least. She is also 2.5 and in a similar situation.
Happy 2018 y'all, and of course, thoughts suggestions and observations appreciated!
Hey all, good suggestions all around. Just got back to this - I'm planning on definitely trying to find a playgroup Saturdays for me and her to have some one-one time and be in a Spanish speaking environment. I'll keep you updated.
Although I know the community language is already working against the 'need' of the language, especially since my wife and I speak ML. We'll do what we need to do to make it work, I'm not concerned...although thank you for putting the seriousness of this issue in my mind.
I do have to say I was a bit disheartened to hear your response about swimming upstream with my wife watching my kids. It's been something she's always dreamt of doing so I certainly don't want her feeling guilty she doesn't speak the minority language...certainly there is something we can do. I'll of course have the weekend which should be at least 10-15 hours wake time with me...I'll do the suggestions but keep looking for other support and ideas.
Our tenth month old is finally approaching the point where she will be vocalizing her first words! She definitely understands the two languages of choice, which in itself is exciting.
We are OPOL - non native ml is Spanish and ML is English.
She's been exposed more or less equally to these languages until now. However, I'm graduating from grad school and starting a new job. My wife who speaks ML will be the main caregiver during the week.
What are things the ML caregiver can include in the daily routine to still have ml exposure while ml parent is gone?
Initial ideas include 5-10 minutes of Spanish kids TV show, background music in Spanish, and perhaps a few books read aloud in Spanish that my wife knows how to read. Any other additional ideas? I want more of course haha!
We had a ml nanny before but since my wife will now be full-time caregiver we will only use her seldomly.
Looking forward to your brilliant people's answers.
Christopher L Wilson
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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