If you are raising your children in your non-native foreign language, PLEASE take the survey. Click on the top right tab. Thank you!!

About This Blog

This blog is for anyone interested in raising their children in a foreign language--meaning a language which neither of the parents speak natively.
We have used the approach where both parents speak the target foreign language (in our case, German) to the children. Neither of us is a native German speaker, yet we have spoken German in our home for the past 20 years and have 8 German speaking children. In this blog, we hope to share our successes, our lessons learned and a few of the insights that we've gained along the way.

Getting geared up for the new bilingual school year and wanting to be a more "deliberate" mom!

September arrived way too soon. I'm always so surprised at how quickly summer flies by. I always think I'll have the time to do summer school work with the kids, but it seldom works out. Between having all the kids home from school and all the summer activities and camps and the lack of a rigid schedule, I just don't seem to fit in any real school work. We mostly played, worked and had fun. We did, however, work a little bit on reading. Here's a little clip from some German summer reading:

The kids are now back in school and I'm getting ready to start our unique part-time home school program: see Part-Time Home Schooling Post  The biggest difference this year is that I will probably only be pulling the kids out of school once a week instead of twice a week, like I did last year. If I feel like I'm just not getting enough time with them, then I may pull them out twice on some weeks. We'll just see how it goes.
My three young kids are attending public school and are in first and second grade this year. They happen to have two of the best teachers in the world. Not only would my kids complain if I took them out of school too often (because they LOVE school), but I also don't want to disrupt their classroom learning too much. On the other hand, I'm anxious to see if we can keep up with our German reading and writing with only one day each week to work on it. I hope that even by exposing them to German reading and writing once a week, that their German literacy skills will continue to progress at grade level. I think that many of the skills they are learning at school (in English) will transfer to our German school work: see Learning to Read in Two Languages.
I am very excited to start our "German School." I love our home school days so much because I am a more "deliberate" mom on those days. I figure that if I'm taking my kids out of school, I'd better make sure that I am not wasting their time here at home. On our home school days, I make an extra effort to spend quality time with my kiddos: teaching, learning, playing, creating, reading, writing etc. We mostly focus on German reading, German writing (handwriting, spelling & journaling), and French. In addition, we usually spend time reading scriptures and teaching values, homemaking (cooking, cleaning, etc), music (piano), outdoor school (nature walks, etc.) and an occasional outing (museum). There's just so much we could do that I can't possibly fit it into one day!
I have spent today printing out our schedule, copying workbook pages, studying our French lesson and getting our "German school" area ready for Friday. I'm so excited about all the things that we will be learning together. I'm thrilled that they are learning to read and write in German and I'm happy that they are starting to learn French. But mostly, I'm just so excited to have my kids at home with me all day and to have this special, deliberate and quality time to connect with my precious little ones.


Sandra Wilson said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Hi there,
Thank you so much for your inspiring blog!!
My first son is starting Primary school in English next summer and I am anxious about teaching him to read and write in French (my mother tongue) before then. I thought it might confuse him, but your stories and others I have read this evening seem to encourage me to go ahead!

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear from you! Do you speak a foreign language? Do you have questions or comments? I'd love to hear them. Thanks!