Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Happy on the inside

One month into the new school, and Suzanne has never been happier! This morning while she ate breakfast she said, " I'm so lucky! Today I have Dutch, English and my class picture!". I knew Suzanne wasn't at her best last year. But neither my husband nor I realized how sad Suzanne was. Until we saw how happy she is now!

Suzanne entered CE2 (French 3rd grade) and changed schools so should could be in section internationale. In Lille, that means either the private schools or Sophie Germain, a public school in the center of Lille. She left all her friends behind. But, it's been an empowering experience for her for a couple of reasons.

She rides her bike to school on most days - with us along side of course! But that makes her feel confident and proud. She's made tons of new friends. Which also is a major confidence builder. And, last but not least, she is the best English speaker in her class. But she's far from being overconfident and full of herself about it. She's just happy...and I didn't realize the social pressure was so heavy for her at her old school. I don't really take it as a parenting failure, but look at it as Suzanne's strength of character : she was putting up with a lot and got through it! Every child needs a secret garden so I don't blame her for not telling us how sad she was.

She says that only 2 other kids in the English class speak fluent English. But I can already see what she's learning. In the first week alone, she learned how to write the date in English. In my quest to get my kids to speak, I overlooked such a small thing like the date. She can speak almost perfectly, but doesn't know the date! She's learned how to write the numbers up to 20, write the colors, and she's also doing art in English. It's really an amazing opportunity!

Let the bilingual adventure continue!

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