Bi-racial and bi-lingual baby!

Yamuna - posted on 02/05/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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Hi there our son is of Indian and German heritage so he hears two languages at home. I speak to him in English (as I am rather rubbish in my mother tongue) and my husband only talks to him in German. And since I understand German I converse with my husband, in front of Max in English while he replies in German. As we live in the UK he gets plenty of English language reinforcement at nursery as he goes full time. But we do try to expose him to DVDs, songs and books in German. Compared to other kids his age his verbal communication skills may be considered a bit behind but I have to keep reminding myself that this wee man is learning two languages and while he may speak clearly later, when he does it will be in two languages!



Any ideas/thoughts on how I can help Maximilian with his language/communication skills ?

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6 Comments

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Maria - posted on 04/28/2009

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Hi, Yamuna! You'd be surprised at how fast young children can learn and how much they can absorb. Their mind is like a sponge at at young age, and if you keep at it, the tongue gets easier over time! Although English is the main language here at home, they are learning Spanish and Filipino (my husband is Caucasian and I'm Spanish/Filipino) and my older son, he's now 17. is trying to learn French, since he's fascinated with the language and hopes to visit Marseilles someday. My girlfriend is married to a German nationality and their children speak German, English and Filipino.

It just needs patience...practice and persistence makes perfect.

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I studied linguistics in school, and I'm raising both my boys bilingual(English and Japanese), two of the biggest helps I've noticed are differentiation and consistency. We made English the lingua franca for the house and Japanese the outside language. My first figured out that the sets of words were different pretty quickly and was able to translate single words for his mono-lingual grandparents before he was two. It sounds like you have that down though, so keep it up and he'll catch up sooner than you think. Just give him lots of opportunities to use both, especially songs and books.

Best of luck!

Yamuna - posted on 02/10/2009

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Thank you ladies! Yes I guess time will tell and much like all other aspects of motherhood I just need to hang in there and be patient ;-))

Lauren - posted on 02/08/2009

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I think having a child that speaks 2 languages is great.. I speak to my son in english and his father and his friends only speak to him in spanish ( his father is salvadorian). ( i on the ohter hand can not speak a bit of spanish and and trying to learn)
I cant wait.. and who knows , maybe one day my son will teach me spanish

Nura - posted on 02/08/2009

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HI there,



My daughters are learning both icelandic and english. As their father is Icelandic, he would speak to them in Icelandic, Im from Singapore 2nd generation mixed of chinese, javanese and malay as i am also not that good in my other 2nd language, i speak to them in english. Im learning in the University about early childhood education.

And i would say to keep doing what you are doing. let him be to exposed to the two langauges. if you like, you could get a flash card and write down both langauges on the pictures



Coz when they get older their language skills will get better in time .. we just have to be patience :)

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