Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tuesday Topic: Kids learning language

Amie asks: How do you help your kids learn the local language in places where there is no school available? Do you view it as important, why or why not? Also, to make it more general, how do you help your children learn language in any situation, where school is available or not?

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  1. When our kids were younger, we had a tutor once or twice a week for an hour. That really helped them get started in learning to read and understand Russian. One of our kids was a good student, but very shy in conversation, while the other was the opposite!
    Once they were teens, encouraging them to become involved in youth or other activities helped them in conversation practice.

  2. Ours have never attended school here, but they picked up the language playing soccer nearby our home each afternoon with other kids.

    We also watched movies in Spanish with the English subtitles on, mostly on movies they knew practically by heart (ie Nacho Libre).

    We definitely feel it's very, very important for a trillion reasons that they are fluent, not only for their socialization, but for safety and acclimation. It's a little tough when I have to look over at one of them to help me understand something someone just said, though, or to ask them to translate some thought I'm not effectively communicating in Spanish. ;)