Any parent would love to know their children’s thoughts, what’s on their mind, how their brains work.
Specifically, I’d love to know how my children’s brains are managing their languages, in which language they think/speak/dream etc…
My children’s background:
Child #1: 8 y.o. , so far lived in 5 Countries and exposed to 4 languages
Child #2: 6 yo, same as above
Child #3: 3 yo, lived in 3 Countries, exposed to 3 languages.
Countries where we lived: UK, The Netherlands, Germany, Australia.
Currently living in Italy, moving to Poland in a few months.
That’s a lot of travelling and exposure to different languages and cultures, I would say.
Now it happens that child #1 loves English, it’s deep in her heart but in the last three months she has been going to school in Italy and she is kind of forcing herself to speak Italian all the time. She’s just probably trying to fit in or maybe she doesn’t see the point of using English when nobody but her family can understand her. Her writing and reading skills in Italian are amazing, not to mention listening and speaking.
Child #2 loves Italian; she is funny because up to now she has never lived in Italy but she has always preferred this language. She is doing great with her reading and writing in Italian and it seems as if learning to read in Italian hasn’t affected negatively her reading skills in English, it has made them even stronger! The interesting fact is that sometimes she comes up speaking English to her sister but this doesn’t last long as her sister switch it back to Italian (her sister leads the conversation and chooses the language they speak).
Child #3 loves Italian. He’s a real chatterbox in Italian and going to kindergarten in Italy has made him even more chattier. He has never sp0ken English apart for a few words but he perfectly understand it and whenever we use English he replies in Italian, translating whatever we just said.
It’s absolutely fascinating for me observing my children, how different they are and how amazingly they adapt to each Country where we live. I’m now worried about finding the right school for them in Warsaw, in a magical world it would be great if they could learn Polish and keep on using English and Italian but….we’ll see, I’m sure they’ll find their way.