It is time again for me to host one of our great and wonderful blogging Carnivals, this time it is the Multilingual Kids Blogging Carnival.
When we talk about multilingualism, it’s often: “research shows that…” and: “there are many benefits…” and: “Here’s why you should…”. I believe this is great because it gives parents information about bilingualism and helps families through their multilingual journey. What is missing here, are personal stories, and especially funny stories and anecdotes.
I will start with mine, and then you will be able to read what other bloggers submitted!
When children learn to read, they try to read everything: what is written on a shop window; in the newspaper; everywhere. So when I learned to read, I was the same. I was quite fascinated by the fact that I knew what these funny symbols (letters) mean and could read them. It didn’t however mean that I understood everything what I read.
The following scene happens in a tram, I am there with my father. I, maybe 6 or 7 years old look through the window. It is the 80-ties, Poland is still communist but the memories of WWII are pretty much alive as well.
“Me: S-O-F-I-A”: What is Sofia?”
My father: “It’s a city, the capital of a country called Bulgaria. This is a Bulgarian restaurant”
Me : “We have a Bulgarian boy in kindergarten. His name is Dragomir. But he doesn’t speak Bulgarian, he speaks Polish.”
My father: “Sure, in kindergarten he speaks Polish, but he probably speaks Bulgarian at home”
Me (very excitedly, and therefore very loudly): “THAT’S JUST LIKE US! WE SPEAK POLISH WHEN WE’RE OUTSIDE AND GERMAN AT HOME!”
My father later said that people in the tram looked at him with such judgment that he was quite glad to get off the tram. Obviously, people, especially older people still hated Germans. But I was totally unaware of this. I was 6, maybe 7. I speand 2 years in Germany and I think I had a great time, from what I can remember.
I am glad to see that this has changed, at least a little. That years later, Poland has a much better relationship with Germany, and they’re members of the EU together. Restaurant “Sofia” doesn’t exist anymore. But I am only a little bit sad.
Here are some great submissions from other bloggers.
On LadyDeeLG, Diana shares what she calls: “Enzoisms“- things that her son Enzo says. He mixes up Spanish, English and French, which results in Fran-Spang-lish! Please read it because the little guy is very inventive!
Michele of Intentional Mama tells her stories of raising bilingual children in America, especially when the language she uses with her children- French- is not her native tongue. The resonses that come from family, but especially strangers are all amusing, but also extremely gratifying!
Always funny, Multilingual Mama totally made me crack up with a story about her multilingual children where they pronunced the French word: “phoque” (seal) as something else, resulting in a rather uncomfortable situation at the pool.
Not all anecdotes are funny but the one at Third Culture Mama is absolutely profound. It involves multiple languages, children and a guitar. If these are not elements of a great story, I don’t know what is.
Leanna at All Done Monkey tells her story of a little dog with coffee ears, but then uses this story as a blog post about how bilingual children learn to speak- and the importance of listenting to them. A must-read.
Bilingual Monkeys is a great ressource about bilingualism, and it is inspirational, educational, and hilarious. This time Adam talks to his children about New Year’s resolutions and hilarity ensues. A hint: Everything’s always about poop. But maybe not. Maybe it’s about speaking English better, writing better, reading better and running better. Click over to Adam’s blog- it is pure awesomeness, as usual.
Maria of Busy as a Bee in Paris also talks about pee and poop. And books and raising bilingual children, and story time. A post that is hilarious, and warm at the same time. And these two things make the best stories.
At Multilingual Parenting, Rita shares everyday stories about he rmultilingual children and is absolutely fascinated by their ability to learn all the languages. One story is about the very hungry child. The other is about the independent child. Yet another one is about an observant child. And Rita is right: children are all of these things.
On his blog, “Dad’s The Way I Like It” writes about the importance of jokes in the minority language- read some of them, contrary to what Jonathan’s says, they’re actually funny. To understand some of them though, you’d need to understand Welsh. I wish I did because I am sure the Welsh jokes are hilarious as well!
Amanda of Expat Life With a Double Buggy writes about living abroad and changing language every day, adn the funny situations that come with not speaking the language perfectly well- yet.
On A Path Of Light, you will find an interesting story of why jokes are important to being happy as well as learn that jokes are culturally sensitive, so what is considered funny in one culture, doesn’t work for another!
Olena of Bilingual Kids Rock, Olena explains some funny situations that happened to her and her children while raising them with two languages- some of them really funny (like a snake that ate a rabbit that was actually really a frog!), others thought-provoking, like how children learn inappropriate words.
As for me, I would like to share a post the great and wonderful Lynn of Nomad Mom Diary wrote for me where she wonders, what the heck is her daughter saying… and sometimes, I wonder the same thing.
These are all the great posts, so give them a like a share, or comment- you will laugh and nod your head in agreement!