Creating situations: Techniques for Bilingualism
Now all of these will also be looking at when we look at creating situations and techniques for bilingualism. Onda. We need to be thinking here about how how what we ourselves are able to create the bilingual situation that we want. And as I said, the idea here is really the onus is on us to get creative as possible and I'll be deadly honest was the only lesson I flunked. I failed at school, but I still think that you don't have to be an artist artistic, to be creative. It's simply about the ideas that we have and putting them into practice, putting them down and jotting them down and thinking about how we can actually come up with really great I D ideas to ensure that we promote Andi, create on Foster. A bilingual setting or situation on this will also lead us unto creating our own personal timetable to see how much time our Children or the child is realistically receiving how much exposure and in times that in hours a week on the child is receiving in that language. So before we actu...
ally and I'd like toe for you to start thinking about already about developing a timetable will be looking at in a short while. But before that, I'd like us to come up with will do a little brainstorming exercise, and I'd like us to think about how we can actually come up with creative ideas on raising a child. Bilingual E. So we've looked at a few resources, but now we're going to be looking at elements that we need to take into account when it comes to raising the child on the import that the child needs linguistically, in order to to be raised in a bilingual environment. So what would you say off the top of your head? Is a valid on an important factor to take into consideration concerning bilingualism bilingual in part by legal exposure. But Asia something practical? Yes, definitely so. Something they can use every day. Yes, definitely practicality, something they're interested in exactly. Yes, so interest, personal interest, hobbies, even on our pop. Here's all because it is the consistency in the sense that way, said daily. Every day, and this is really vital and really key to, because we need to be analyzing how much we're actually doing. How much import, how much exposure. Is the child receiving every single day? Yeah, I just kind of responsive Teoh, making sure that you're looking at what the child is trying to say and doing and making sure that we're using the opportunities to give them a good example. I'd also, like Teoh, use another word that services to responsive responsibilities as well. So what are our personal responsibilities? What happens if we if we're not able to carry t commit to something that we that we thought we would be able to have the consequences to this Mateas? Yes, there have to be fun off course, Most definitely Most definitely. Yeah, because if we think about what we didn't learn English sat in front of a grammar book and someone with the K next was telling us, you said that you learn in a fun environment and that's how we pick up our language. That's definitely one of the if not the most important element in this, and this is crucial for every single interest, every single point here, because it has to be funny and asked to be practical. There's something that's also on we've picked up on it before, but the educational factor of it because at some point, regardless of where we want to send our Children, whether it's home schooling or in the morning in the vast majority of cases, there were sent to some form of school, depending on the set up. But we also have to take this into consideration. What happens on out This also what happens outside our our our, our whole on this depends on the bilingual that the setting that we have anywhere. If it's a bilingual home, then this is something that will always we will already be be thinking about ourselves. How can we promote the use of the language outside of the home if it's not used outside of the whole, in general on there are really great ways have been able to do that inside the home and outside. So, for example, if you're only using the language of home and try to connect with other people that are using the language outside, be in the form of a play group, be in the form of an association, a sports club, this is obviously generally easier and in an urban setting. But even with you saying more teachers, well, that you're finding it difficult to find a Cantonese school because it's much general are much more common to find a Mandarin one. So in this case, you have to really dig deep and see what we can do ourselves. Because the onus in this case the responsibility is falling more on us and we can't really give our. We've got an individual role to play and we find it. We can't really give a lot of the activities a lot. You can't delegate to anyone else. So in this case, we have to really analyze the situation for ourselves and see how we can fit all of these into here. But we've done a really good job. I've done a really, really good job, and they'd now, like toe start thinking about the timetable, and then we're really going to get onto these techniques in as the specific techniques and to see how we're able to come up are the ideas that we can come up with to ensure bilingualism. So I just like you to, As I said, spend a few minutes that you know this you can take it that you can take a day, for example, it can take a day, and then we can multiply that by five or base seven. Let's say so. Busy with the school setting, then it's most likely that it's going to be your five day. And then there's going to be different in the time that we use over the weekend. But then they know, For example, I can tell you another experience that I know off where a friend of mine who speaks Turkish and German fluently on she felt quite agreed as a child growing up in Germany and having to spend the entire weekend at school because their parents insisted on if she was going to German school, our school, which was in German during the week from Monday to Friday. Then she would have to spend Saturday and Sunday at Turkey School, and they insisted on this. And the thing is in the could've side. And they said that there's a large Turkish population in Berlin, that she would have automatically been able to speak to others. Or she would have heard she died a lot of exposure in Turkish per se simply because of their the immediate surrounding. But they insisted on her going to Turkey School to one provide the educational factor to be to be schooled in the language. So her. As we said before, we looked at balance, bilingualism and where Children maybe speak one language in one area better than the other. Our are much more well versed, Let's say in that And in her case, you could really see that because she was schooled in both languages and not schooled from just threw her parents, who were maybe helping out with their homework in German. She was really schooled in both languages, and she obviously was made aware with it being Turkish cool off subjects that would be relevant, say, for a Turkey speaker so she would learn Turkish history instead of, and that's something that we can do as well. This is the input that we can provide. So talking about language and culture and how she would have learned German history at school, German geography, a score and then in the Turkish language, setting a turkey school. Then she was raised. Our she was immersed in in in Turkish subjects in the sense that she learned about Turkish geography even from being in Berlin. She learned about Turkish history. So these are also really interesting things that happen in an educational setting. But we can also use to our advantage and use if we're not able to provide this or to find this to find the school is able to do that because simply we we can also provide this education as well. From that from the aspect from that slant you. When we were talking about the to create being creative, I think a lot of people also they one of them doesn't speak Ah, language. They might hire a nanny who speaks that second language, definitely. And and it seems to work better if the nanny on Lee speaks. That language doesn't speak English very well, for instance. Definitely. And I think that's something that we need to look here as well, because I would say that the role if we're talking about role, we have to be really clear about what our role is in this case, a technique or not, a technique is more of a rule. If we're going to raise a child on the child does not know any other language so far. Is that the age where they're not ableto speak properly, then we have to make it clear from the very beginning that our role has to be monolingual. But we have to speak exclusively in that language. If we double if we change from one that one language to the other than the child at some point, given the majority minority setting, will inevitably usually in this A. So far as I'm aware, the child generally switches through the majority language because the child is made aware of the fact that you speak that language as well. So it doesn't matter if maybe the impulse coming from elsewhere. If the child knows that you're able to understand him or her in the majority language that the learning at school, that learning from the other pair that learning from the grand parents they will start speaking to you in that language. And this is where the challenge comes about. How do we get them to speak to us back in the language? So I would always suggest from day one, or from the day you've committed to speaking tea, using tea, raising them in a bilingual environment to always, always, always speak one language exclusively. Now, this is interesting as well because a friend of mine who's raising her Children through Italian and German in Germany that that speaks to them in German. On the she speaks to her Children in Italian. Andi. She told me recently that her I didn't know this. Her husband speaks impeccable Italian and his German, but he speaks fluent Italian. They speak to each other in German, and they said that once the child was born that they would. She would speak to him in Italian and he would speak to him in German because it was the natural setting as a native speaker, anything of Italian and a native speaker of German. Now the child is of the age off is now six on is going to school. His friends speak German is in a major majority German language environment through school, through the wider setting on its got to the point now where she's realizing that she's the only person providing him with this import. All the exposure he has, even if he's exposed to the radio, is basically the main import is coming through her, and the question is now is whether it would be a good idea for the husband that speaks very good. It's impeccable Italian to start speaking to his own child in Italian, and I think he would actually be if you stewed in there. I'm not sure whether, but it is going to listen to this. But I think for me I would think it's a very interesting prospect because the child is already able to speak German, and now we need to look increasing the import and given the fact that she always the only one that speaking to him in the Italian, then it would be a good idea. Of course, the child might start to think, Wait up. You've always spoken to me in German. But that could also change as well if we were to change, to move abroad than in her case, if they were to go to Italy, it would be completely normal for the child to speak much more Italian. So I would always say that, especially in the case of a minor language where the language outside isn't the language that we're teaching them, are we? We want them to be brought up in. Then it was is most it most. It's crucial to speak one language exclusively on this obviously is going to bring those two problems or difficulties when the child, for whatever reason, decides to be reluctant at some point, just doesn't want to speak to yours anymore in that language. And that's something we need to deal with, how we're able to to go about that in the best way. But before we get to that, I'd like us to analyze our timetable for you to share me here on her home as well. You're your daily routine, Andi, to see where Theo element of bilingualism fits into that. So more teach. For example, would you be able? Could you tell me what a typical day looks like for you and how Cantonese and English is used in that setting? Sure, like I mentioned earlier, I trying to infuse our daily activities from the moment we get up, you know, hygiene, like brushing our teeth and washing your hands to meal times, um, to when we're at the playground and sharing or not sharing. But um, taking turns with toys and things like that to bedtime like every aspect of our daily routine, has infusion of the Cantonese language in it because it's practical and it makes sense for her like 11 activity. What we're doing. I'm describing to her everything that we're doing. Even if she doesn't speak it back to me in Cantonese, she at least here's the words and associate to the action with the words. Exactly, definitely. And that's a brilliant way because even if even if it's just in English, the child isn't automatically going to respond to you in English. It doesn't matter. In this case. What language it is is simply that the child needs to be exposed on, Maybe take. Take that in first, even if with one language, the child might take a while to actually toe internalize this on to at some point, then feel comfortable enough to produce Thio. Thio start saying that themselves. Yeah, sometimes if I'm if we're introducing a new activity, I'll speak about in English and then I'll say it in Cantonese afterwards. So then she's aware of the yeah, thank you, Margaret eso and mean and our household will weekly if you at least 40 hours a week that she's getting Spanish from the nanny who comes there, and aside from that, at this point, it's English okay, other than some, you know, book reading and where he's not really into screens yet. You know, she's only 10 months old, but it's not like we have TV, your computer stuff going on yet. So that's where we are now. OK, well, that's very interesting, because this is, ah, figure that I wanted to bring up on a lot of research. Research points to a minimal of minimum story of 25 hours per week in the mid in the minor language, and that's the minimum amount of exposure that we need to be looking at. And if we reduce that to five hours Teoh a five day week, then that's five hours per day. If it's a seven day week, then then it's obviously we're talking about three, just over three hours a day. Now the question is, Is that doable? I mean, in the case of 40 hours, then, wow, Then we're talking about eight hours a day on a five day week or are just over just under 76 just a bit six between six and seven. Which again is if we analyze how many hours are in a day and how many how many hours we actually sleep. That's a lot of hours. So in that case, you you're doing really great because you've got you've got this huge amount of expo here. I've of Spanish being spoken to the child. Onda, uh, it be really interesting to see what happens, how that developed. So, uh, and finish with the other grand parents being there. So they've always got Spanish around with the family as well. And then with them growing up in a in an English environment a bit like Marty's, I mean that the wider community speaks English. Then there are obviously no doubt going to be having a lot of English Spanish pretty much 50 50. I would say this is a lot of the just speak Spanish to him and then course the schools and the combination of what they have going great. It is really, really important. As I said, to establish how many hours and as I said, S o, this is your number, Marat, But we're talking about 25 hours here. At least I would say a week of the minimum. And if we think about that, as I said, we're talking about five hours a day Monday to Friday or three hours now where can we fit these three hours in now? There are so many exercises we can do. And I think it's great to hear a few Marty's saying that you have exercises like brushing your teeth. I mean, it's a great exercise because yeah, walking down a set of stairs starting with counting numbers. Exactly. And that's where we need to go back and think about how we can be creative. Because essentially, when we're talking about bilingualism, then we're talking about speaking to our Children. And in order for those to speak, we want them to speak back towards the child, has to start talking. They have now compiled a set of what I have come up with us. Five best techniques to get your child talking as quickly as possible. And one of my favorites is really to read to your child out loud. And we looked at this before. They're the importance of reading on. I can't stress enough the importance of reading because at some point the child will have to start reading. Kim eyes herself, his or herself Andi, and it also exposes the child. If we read to them out loud exposes them to the language. It makes them familiar with the sounds of the language that they will start to reproduce themselves. And it also makes them aware off the connection between the written on the spoken. So even if they're not able to read at the moment that they will also has an early age in the passive way, be become familiarized with the verbal that the verbal on the written form on is also a great exercise for them to for us to read to them and then to ask questions. So what happened to the fox on? And if you're not able to find, for example, a book in your language, then it doesn't really matter, because we can also be really creative and either go to the library and find another book feeling. Really. I mean, language in the language offer feeling really, really creative. Then we can just cover up the text. Well, we could buy a picture book. We can buy a picture, but can we can create the story ourselves? We don't need to buy a story that's already been created because we are the masters of our own picture book. In this case, we can change under the beauty of this is we can actually change the story every single time if it's a picture book with animals, and it didn't come create a story about what happens to the animal. We just might need to remember what the story's about when we're reading it to the child. But if it's a you know a few pages long, then that's fine. And then a week later, we take the same box and we don't need, and we read or we contact these things up when we can print them up. I saw a really, really moving documentary about a woman who had decided to she was a native American, and she was the sole speaker of her language that had Bean. She had revitalized that she brought it back from the dead, and it was her. She taken it upon her as her task to bring her child up in in this language, and the child would effectively become the first native speakers of this language. After 200 years on day, remember seeing images of the woman reading through a child, and then she taped she'd written a version of a story and she taped over the English language book so the child would never see the English. And someone might say, Well, oh, well, it's a shame because they could read English books But the child is gonna be exposed to so much English that in this case it's not going to be detrimental. It all is only encouraging, and it's a very great way to encourage the use of the native of her language. So the I can't stress enough. As I said, the importance of reading now the 2nd 1 that I think is a great technique, is to engage in verbal word games with your child. As you were saying, Marty's that you're going down the stairs and a simple one are. I'm not sure they can bring you appearing. You could weaken, Go through it together. Were to be great, cause that I could load of entities as well. But it's simply a great activity to do. We don't have toe come up with these elaborate ideas. Sure, we're free to do so, but simple things like when you're brushing your teeth as you were saying that you can say brush brush brush are one tooth to t three teeth and then brushing your hair are having breakfast where you're sat at the breakfast table and you're saying, Oh, hey, what's this? And they say, Are you say cop like No, it's not a copy. It's a bock bock, then Bach. What's look, what what color is the Bach? It's green. And then you say they're on cholera and then these correct you and then they say, No, it's blue. Don't be silly. Ah, glass and then water. And then you think about what's your favorite drink? Oh, I like chocolate or chocolate milk, and you can go on from this. They said this, you know, they simply using the language in any way you confined and you think is suitable to the to your situation. Another personal favorite is to prepare surprises in the language days out. So get them excited. Get them given talking about it so you could tell him. Michael, I've I've got a surprise for us over the weekend, and you tell them on one day and you're going away on Saturday, and he doesn't have to be somewhere Super fire. It could be so much just around the corner and maybe possible related to the language. So they always from the beginning have a positive attitude to the language because and sometimes in the case of languages that are used lacks in the case of the minority language that as the older they grow, some Children start toe resent, unfortunately, resent the the language that they're only speaking to you in or they don't necessarily resent it. But they feel is if everyone else speaks that language, say, in this case, English. And why does Mommy always insist on speaking to me in Cantonese? Are in Farsi or in German on We need toe build up positive associations on special associations. Even we can call a secret language. We can call it a an exclusive exclusive. I'm not really big on exclusivity, but you can make it something that's, you know, that's that's this. This special on the great ways t prepare a surprise to get them talking about it, to get them enthusiastic about it, and then they also associate the language of something that's that's really special, that I do this with Daddy on Saturday and this year we do this in our language. It's our language, and another great way is also on to involve other people. So you get the child involved with other people, especially in the case where you've got grandparents that speak the language. It doesn't have to be a grandparent. It can be, for example, a friend. It could be someone that you know that speaks the language and that the familiar with. But it also the impetus is on them to speak because you're stuck in front of a screen or sign in front of a screen. And then you can only do this for so long, like you said, like, Hey, you know, say hi, toe Granny over there. I'll say hi, toe tell. Tell uh, tell them what you've been doing today and then the other person interacts, and then the child starts speaking as well. And that you're involving other people means that they become, especially if in the setting that you have, usually you're the only person that speaking in the language, then they become aware of the fact that is No, I'm not. The money is not the only person that I'm speaking to in this language. I like I can speak to in this language. There are other people, that speaker as well. It's a secret language, but Grandma and Grandad know the secret language. Our friend knows the secret language of my friend Mom. Mommy's friend knows the secret language, so this is also a great way for them to develop their speaking skills. And one of my personal favorites as well is to sing together. I'm a big fan of music, and I think music is essentially for learning a language. We saw that in the previous class, where it helps immensely to acquire new vocabulary, to acquire a native rhythm, a native Internation. And here Children love to sing nothing about anything in anywhere and you can. You can foster this by making up silly songs with them, or maybe songs that like nursery rhymes and stuff that that they would enjoy singing. And you can get them to do this together with you or with other people and to encourage them to actually sing along and really enjoy. And as you were saying before, he's got to be fun. So we need to be adding these fun elements into it, so those for me would be five of the best techniques that I can come up with for your child to really take off speaking, Yeah, about the involving. Other people like great grand parents. I in some of my friends have had this issue where, like my my mother speaks Chinese, Michelle's with English, and I've also had nannies who speak Chinese but also speak English. So because you know, my sons Chinese level isn't as good as its English, they'll just default English and they'll say, And then when I encourage them to speak, Chinese will say, Oh, he does understand me so I can't. But I feel like it's a vicious cycle, like if they don't get it in Mandarin, he really won't understand. But I'm trying to convince them that if you just start speaking more and more Hill understand. So I guess I'm wondering if you have any suggestions on how to so this issue. So I definitely think that's correct. And I think the two the three key to three key elements here consistency so I would encourage your family, your great your mother toe. Speak to your child to your son in Chinese, So consistency seconds one is perseverance. So you need to really, really persevere with your with your endeavor. You need to tell your mom he doesn't understand. Speak, speak, Speak to me, the simple away. And if you're through the beauties in this case that your mother understands. So if he's replies in Chinese and says, Oh, I don't know doesn't know what you're saying What you what she's seen that you can say in another way. She can say something, and then she'll say something that maybe understands. Or she said, the cat in Chinese and then says the word in English, I think, goes back. Teoh goes back to Chinese on another thing that is really key in. This is while actually there are four. I just noticed that the island in certain R. C. So it's the four C's RC site, tolerance and patience. We need to be tolerant. We shouldn't ever be scolding or punishing our the child for not responding to us in the language. And this is also a common pitfall, a common problem that we face in bilingual learning, bilingual settings and patient. We need to be patient. We can't assume that the child is going to be able to do it straight away. And in the case of where, if the language isn't used as much as we would like it to be used in, this is this is a common situation where the child maybe doesn't understand as much as we would like the child initiative, like the child to understand. But then we maybe need to look at the importance that the classic solution here would be to increase Thean part. And then you've got the circles you were saying, If if the child doesn't understand, but we can make the child understand, not forcing them obviously. But if we can, if we persevere, if we continue to speak Chinese to the child, then the child, especially because it's receiving their school as well, is going to We need to coerce in a Pacific in a friendly way on with the use of Chinese and that replies to the applies to every other languages. Well, I'm also wondering, you know, I I'm not even thinking about my son. Speaking to me in Chinese like that to me, is a pipe dream like, because he knows that I speak English. He knows my mom was English I understand, though, you know, one pair, one language. But eventually they're going to figure out that you speak English because, you know, I need to talk to my husband in English. So how, like how and when I grew up, my parents both spoke Chinese in the house and spoke Chinese to me. But I would always answer in English, even though their second link, their English, is their second language. So how can you? I mean, how can you What are the techniques to cajole your child and just speaking the other language? The simple answer is simply to use that language. And even if the child knows that you speak English, Hey will understand that with you he speaks Chinese. Regardless of whether you speak because the same with my friend as well the Italian German setting where she knows that Mommy speaks German. She lives in Berlin husbands, they speak German together, even though they speak Italian. Other do I think they speak Italian towards amongst themselves as well. But he knows when he hears is out with his moment. She has to speak in Italian German because is she in the supermarket that she's gonna speaking, and she speaks fluent German. So they know that you're speaking with not just because you speak to them, but we know anyway. So in this case, it's more about no. With the child saying, I know you speak German Joe, I know you speak English, so I'm going to speak to you in English is we have to convince the child of I know you speak English. I speak English as well, but we speak Chinese. So the more you're saying, the more the caregiver or the parents speaks Chinese, the more likely the child like eventually those speaking it. And you can try and tell the child why I can say, Hey, you know, speak to me in Chinese. I'd like you to speak to me in Chinese. You know, Let's let's use Chinese is our language. Let's make Chinese our language. I says, Oh, yeah, but you're speaking this year. You speaking this too. We all speaking these but Chinese respond. Let's do Chinese together. And one last question in terms of he said, it's better to have one parent speak one language saved. Two parents speak. They both think Chinese should one still speak Chinese one speak English, or should they both speak? I would ideally say, in this case it is an in English. If that's around. If the outside world is English speaking, I would say both speak Chinese as much as possible. If it's say, German speaking on the Barents, be German Chinese in English, I would say one speak Chinese. One speak English so they're exposed tourism tourism to as much as possible because essentially, that's really great, because then they brought with three languages, and that's not problematic at all. But is it okay for the parents to speak if they both the Chinese also speaking English? But you sure I mean you have. Of course you have cases is a well, for example, of Children that had the parents I know over case, and this is watching in the case of a lot of minority languages where they decided that it wasn't worthwhile, or they thought they perceived at least to not be worthwhile to give their language their first language on to their Children because they thought it was pointless. Their Children wouldn't either, because they weren't growing up in a region where it was spoken or simply because they thought does. They're not going to get out ahead, especially languages that say maybe in the case of Irish, are right on or even Native American languages, where the Children where the parents thought, My child, I want my child the best start possible and for me the best that would be to speak to them in that language. But they perceived it as there's no point. My child let me never, never hold because they're not going to speak Navajo outside of outside of the setting. And even then, maybe not all of us speak Navajo, but I perceive that to be to be, to be falls and to not be a good idea at all. But it happens, and in this year's you have the case where you have Children that are brought up to in English and the parents used a secret language, and the use active is a secret language. So they and they never teach the Children that I have a friend who whose parents brought Britain amongst themselves, and she understands Britain but can't speak it because she simply picked up from a parent and they would always speak in Britain when they were talking about issues that they didn't want her to understand. So I wouldn't advocate for that kind of secret language, but it happens. So uh so, yeah, but speaking about techniques, a Zay said, I just go back toe to toe Exactly the the getting creative we've seen. Now, with the five best techniques that we have, literally we have so many ideas that weaken with that that we have here. And we really need to focus, in my opinion, on the core elements off, off, off, raising the child bilingual and what we need as as an import. So we need to be looking activities that involve speaking, listening, reading, obviously a later stage, a much later late stage writing as well. So the first early stage we're talking about essentially these two, these are the four. These are the two skills that we need to be practicing. We need to be ensuring exposure to as much as possible. And thankfully, nowadays we have many ways of doing so. Speaking and listening, we can use modern technology to help us here as well. We have APS we can have the child using the IPod using the IPad using the tablet using anything we can really have. There are great things out there. And obviously, as I said before with reading, we can have box. There's really no limit toe how we can Actually and obviously we can also do this honor, say, a tight budget. We don't have to be spending loads and loads of money, while expensive gadgets on the best thing as well is we can actually will was being creative. We can create situations where we can use this, and it's not referring to the language, it all toys. We could have a tie. For example, the teddy bear only speaks Chinese back. We have a teddy bear that the child speaks to the teddy very in Chinese. And you give the teddy bear a Chinese name on the teddy bear, and you and your child speak to the teddy bear in Chinese. So if we emphasize on these two and then come up and I'd like to maybe also may be for you to take this away with you to think of think of ways how we can actually stimulate speaking and listening activities it is not always just about was providing input is also about all those are not necessarily people in this case, because thanks to modern technology, we can have so many other things we can have so many of the other farms of exposure. So that's really something to think about. And one thing I would definitely recommend is to build your own. I like to call it as a friend who is a library. I love libraries on. I have, like, a kind of, like be in my home as well. And if I could that have the entire room feel from resealing Teoh, what do we call it before? Yeah, in Ah, in books I'm getting there needs to We need to work on it a bit more, but create your bilingual library, create an environment where the child can go into the and maybe not just in his or her room. But ours is like a little space in the in the apartment in the house where is filled. The language is present in that