The Frau spent last weekend with some expat friends who were visiting the States from Switzerland. Their daughter, Toddler S, speaks Swiss German. And when The Frau heard her speak, she couldn’t believe how much she had missed hearing the language.
But the best part was that Toddler M and Toddler S played like they had never been apart. Although they were starting to play exclusively in Swiss German back in September, this time Toddler M spoke English and Toddler S spoke Swiss German. But they understood each other perfectly. Kids these days.
Anyway, that fact that Toddler M still understood Swiss German six months after leaving it behind made The Frau extremely happy. One of her big regrets lately is that Toddler M isn’t being immersed in another language at the time in her life when it is so easy for her to learn.
Sure, every Tuesday, Toddler M gets approximately 30 minutes of Spanish at her preschool, which is the American idea of language learning, but The Frau longs for a preschool that immerses the child completely instead of teaching the language like a class. The Chicago area has several of these preschools, but alas, none are in her very white and English-speaking neighborhood.
So. The Frau is doing the best she can. This means that Toddler M watches a lot of Peppa Wutz and Bummi on YouTube, she meets with a German expat and her child once a week at the local library (which involves more German for The Frau than for Toddler M, but that's another story), and this summer she’ll go to German School. Granted, this German School is American in that it only takes place for three hours once a week, but hopefully it will be enough for Toddler M to keep her language retention going. Another part of the American Experiment continues…
Frohe Ostern, mitenand.