Google+ Authentic Parenting: Towards A Language Switch?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Towards A Language Switch?

This post has been written as a submission to the Blogging Carnival On Bilingualism. If you want to learn more about the carnival, subscribe to their email list.

We'll be moving to DRC Congo in a couple of months. With my husband's work schedule, this means that I'll be spending over three months in Belgium.
Now you might remember that my daughter's primary language is French, even though it is only the second language in our household.

As we will be spending such a long time in an almost monolingual Dutch setting, I am wondering if somewhere along this period my daughter will switch - and start to talk more Dutch then French.

Her Dutch right now is limited to inserting one or two words into a French sentence, but I have noticed that, since we've been spending a lot of time together, her Dutch is really advancing, and multiple Dutch words in one phrase become rather common.
I have also noticed that she often tries to speak as many Dutch words to me as she can recall, whereas before se just said what came first when talking to me.

Will three months flip her over? How much progress will she make in Dutch? Will her French be affected as she will get to hear and speak little of it during these months?

It's a very exciting little experiment! I'll be sure to let you know how it went along.



  1. It will be very interesting to hear how it goes! :D

  2. I would guess she needs less than three months.

    Absolutely want to know, of course ;-)

  3. I'm curious, too! Going to check out your latest post and see if you've filled us in a bit!
    Thanks for sharing, Tamara

  4. Haven't posted an update yet. We still have some time to go until we are completely immersed in French again, and the most Dutch influenced period is yet to come, since my husband is leaving on monday


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