This week we share a question from Lin who is about to embark on a holiday visit with her family. She is wondering whether or not it would be ok for her to switch to her child’s minority language during the visit in order to give her child a complete “minority-language-bath.”
Should she go for it or might this be too confusing for her child? What do you think?
Dear Multilingual Living,
We are raising our little one to be bilingual following the OPOL method. I need some advice on how to tackle a family holiday. We plan to visit the country of the minority language in a few months time for 3 weeks.
My husband and I speak the minority language at home to each other, he speaks the minority language with our little one and I speak the majority language to her. Would it be best for me (the majority language speaker) to switch to the minority language when talking to my little one whilst we’re on holiday? She understands both perfectly but has slightly more words in the majority language at present.
I like the idea of taking a ‘minority language holiday’ to boost this language but I’m not sure if it will confuse her too much. She will be 2 and a bit when we plan to go.
All the people that she will come into contact with will speak the minority language with her whilst we’re there. My husband and I are both bilingual. I speak both the minority and majority language fluently and without a ‘foreign’ accent so it is not an issue for me to switch.
Thanks in advance,
(Please post your responses to Lin in the comments section below…)
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