Learning languages
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14-09-2015, 06:39 AM
RE: Learning languages
My dad's a native German but we were raised speaking English because they thought it would confuse us. I'm still struggling to learn German at 41. I could have been brought up bilingual.
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14-09-2015, 06:49 AM
RE: Learning languages
(14-09-2015 06:39 AM)Mathilda Wrote:  My dad's a native German but we were raised speaking English because they thought it would confuse us. I'm still struggling to learn German at 41. I could have been brought up bilingual.

That used to be what most people believed, unfortunately. Science has pretty much squashed that misconception, at least for those willing to do the research. What the data shows is that during the first couple years the confusion, so to speak, can indeed lead to a slight delay in linguistic development but, once it clicks, usually by age 4 or 5, they not only catch up but typically surpass other kids in their ability to communicate effectively in any language.

My kids are by default in an English/French household, and I take it upon myself to read to them in Chinese most nights.

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14-09-2015, 08:21 AM
RE: Learning languages
(14-09-2015 06:35 AM)yakherder Wrote:  Ran into a first world issue with regards to raising my kids in a multi-lingual household. My oldest son, coming up on four, communicates with me primarily in English and sometimes in Chinese when I'm reading to him, with mom usually in French and sometimes English, and with his grandparents in French since they speak no English. Even though he doesn't necessarily understand the concept of different languages and why they exist, he's more or less doing a good job of associating languages with certain people and using the appropriate words.

While I was away for a few days, they discovered he was also associating events with language. Normally I'm the one who gives him his evening bath, but while I was gone his grandmother was coming over to do it. Even though he realizes grandma doesn't speak English, he has associated English with bath time and can't seem to make the switch to communicate with grandma until the bath is finished lol.

I've read that this is fairly normal and he'll figure it out in the next year our so. It's just interesting watching the language learning process at work, and how kids handle the confusion Tongue

I knew a couple that had two boys while living in Japan. They spoke English at home and Japanese in public and all was fine until they moved back to the US. The kids had apparently assumed that English was a private language used for family and Japanese was for everyone else. It took a while for them to figure out that it was OK to speak English with non-family members.

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