Starting Day Care Means Stepping up Language Learning Efforts

My son Enzo recently started day care. Because I was afraid that full time day care or nursery school would introduce too much English too soon, I decided to go with a part time program. I feel I’ve made the right decision because It’s only been about a month and he already throws around English words in our conversations.

I do not act surprised or scold, I simply say, “¿quieres decir _____? ” and insert the word in Spanish. He smiles a mischievous smile… He understands what he is doing! He knows he isn’t supposed to speak to mama en inglés!

Enzo used to watch a lot of TV in English, but now that he is hearing a lot of it at day care, I have really started focusing on Spanish and French DVDs. I’m lucky because my parents and babysitter speak to him in Spanish all the time. Moving forward, I’m contemplating the idea of making our home a Spanish/French household when it’s just the three of us. I think it will help Enzo hear his parents speak those languages constantly. Perhaps that will keep him from wanting to answer in English. Added bonus, it will also improve my French skills!

I realize that raising a multilingual baby is a lot of work and requires commitment — I feel like I have to step up my game now that he’s in day care!

How did you handle your child(ren) starting preschool or daycare in the majority language? Would love to hear your experiences! Please share any tips below!

{Image by  familymwr}

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