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English as a second language

 
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amother




OP
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 3:27 pm
Hi,

I’m chassidish living in a town where Yiddish is the primary language.

I want my kids to learn English from a young age to provide a head start for when they finally start learning English in first grade (boys in third!). At that point it’s often too late for proper language development.

Any ideas or tips besides for switching languages back and forth at home?
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amother




Beige
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 3:35 pm
I'm in an English-speaking environment, and I want my kids to learn Yiddish. So the opposite Smile

I try to speak to the kids all or mostly in Yiddish. During the summer I give points for speaking in Yiddish with family members. I buy a lot of Yiddish kids' books. We have a few Yiddish videos and story tapes.

My oldest kids are fluent Yiddish speakers (better than me) and comfortable reading chapter books in Yiddish. My younger kids are not as fluent, but hopefully that will improve in time.
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amother




Brunette
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 3:44 pm
They have to hear and speak the language regularly to really be fluent. Find an English speaking babysitter or playgroup program
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BrisketBoss




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 3:44 pm
amother [ Beige ] wrote:
I'm in an English-speaking environment, and I want my kids to learn Yiddish. So the opposite Smile

I try to speak to the kids all or mostly in Yiddish. During the summer I give points for speaking in Yiddish with family members. I buy a lot of Yiddish kids' books. We have a few Yiddish videos and story tapes.

My oldest kids are fluent Yiddish speakers (better than me) and comfortable reading chapter books in Yiddish. My younger kids are not as fluent, but hopefully that will improve in time.


Glad I'm on the right track because this is what I was going to suggest. Don't switch so much--talk to your kids in English if you're comfortable with it. They will learn Yiddish anyway by default.
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amother




Snowflake
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 6:07 pm
We are a heimish chassidish home and my daughter is in a litvish school that doesn't teach a word in yiddish. Yet she speaks it and definitely understands it perfectly. She just picked it up from her surroundings. My son's, My dh. We never spoke to her in yiddish, she just picked it up from hearing people speak it.
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amother




Pansy
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 9:11 pm
Right now I'm trying to teach my daughter Yiddish.

Some things I do:

Encourage her to play with Yiddish speaking neighbors/cousins and not be scared to talk to them in Yiddish.

I will teach her words and Yiddish sentence structure either by the shabbos seuda or randomly any day. She enjoys it.

I don't think you should speak to them completely in English because growing up where Yiddish is the first language you want it to be very strong. It's going to be their most important language.

You need to teach it as a second language. When you speak two languages like that or one at home and one in school, often they fail at one or both languages. Unless you have a child who is extremely adept at languages.
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seeker




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 9:39 pm
"Switching languages back and forth at home" is actually not the best idea. Kids learn language best when there's consistency. So it's easier for them to learn each different language if, say, mom speaks Yiddish but Bubby speaks English. Or mom speaks Yiddish and babysitter, nanny, housekeeper, whatever speaks English. To have one person speaking both languages is more confusing.
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BrisketBoss




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 9:44 pm
amother [ Pansy ] wrote:
Right now I'm trying to teach my daughter Yiddish.

Some things I do:

Encourage her to play with Yiddish speaking neighbors/cousins and not be scared to talk to them in Yiddish.

I will teach her words and Yiddish sentence structure either by the shabbos seuda or randomly any day. She enjoys it.

I don't think you should speak to them completely in English because growing up where Yiddish is the first language you want it to be very strong. It's going to be their most important language.

You need to teach it as a second language. When you speak two languages like that or one at home and one in school, often they fail at one or both languages. Unless you have a child who is extremely adept at languages.


This isn't true. If Yiddish is the first language where they are, the parents don't have to speak it. The kids will completely pick it up anyway. That's how language acquisition works. Kids learn the language of their community, because it is useful/relevant to them. If their parents speak a different language, this is called the children's 'heritage language.' They can understand it very well but are less likely to speak it very often, or know how to read it etc.--but in this case they will learn that in school.

Children of immigrants going to American public schools speak perfect English and understand their parents. No need to be 'extremely adept at languages.'

I know olim who I think require their children to speak English at home. The children have very good Hebrew and English. The English has a bit of an accent.
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amother




Pewter
 

Post Wed, Jun 22 2022, 11:45 pm
I know very chasidish people that got Uncle Moishy CDs for that reason alone.

I'm not worried about his English unless you live in a shtetel that speak bloiz Yidish.
If you live in a city he'll pick it up from the street and the English department is a little better in 2022. They're usually a year behind the girls in secular studies. That's what I saw when I helped an English teacher in Satmar 54 boys.
I went to a school that was very focused on secular and koidesh studies. I could say that even Satmar got better at their secular department.
Parents don't stand for garbage anymore.
Besides satmar got more money than God
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