Thursday, 29 June 2017

Readers !

Oh dear, as my daughter would say with a fake British's been 6 months since my last post!

But I just had to share my joy ! What joy and pride the mother of a bilingual child feels when they catch not one but BOTH children reading in the minority language!

Reading for both kids has been a challenge.

For Max, almost 8, it's been more of a laziness thing. He's known how to read since he was 5. He taught himself to read in English at the same time. But he just simply refused to acknowledge that he actually knew how to read. Until about 6 months ago when he got hooked on a series of French books, Les Mystérieuses Cité d'Or. Max is an organized little dude and likes to know the next step. So I think he finds it reassuring to read series. I finish book 1 and then there's book 2. So I was surprised when he kept resisting the Magic Tree House...but then I began reading him one a couple days ago. He finished alone in bed last night and this morning went to the book case, took out the next 5 books in the series, and brought 2 to school "just in case I get bored".

So after finding Max in his bed reading in English alone, I went down to see Suzanne (now 11) who was reading Percy Jackson in ENGLISH on her kindle. I was like, WHAAAAT???? And I had to high five myself  and then high five my husband.

Suzanne is not a "reader". She loves books, but doesn't have the patience or the confidence. I think she believes she isn't a good reader because that's what they tell her at school. But I remember being that same kid. I was in the lower level reading group because I was a slow reader. The message that sends to you is "you don't read well" so you end up not wanting to read.

When we gave Suzanne a kindle for her birthday, the purpose was twofold. First, she wanted to be able to play her music in her room which meant an internet connection but we didn't want to give her an ipod or other. Second, we thought hey she can download books. So my husband found her Percy Jackson in English. This past year at school, she studied and loved Greek mythology. And now she can't put Percy down! She doesn't understand all the words, but I tell my kids that that's ok. For instance, she asked me what a "card came" is. It turns out she didn't understand "report card came". So there are cultural limits but who cares! My kids are readers. In French. In English!

Next year, Max will begin at Sophie Germain in the international section where Suzanne has been the past 3 years. Suzanne will be starting collège, French middle school, which I am extremely traumatized about (but that's for another post). She'll be in the section britanique doing 3 extra hours of English a week. I am really pleased with the system so far, considering it's public school. But I petrified...

1 comment:

Andres said...

That´s fantastic! My 6yr old doesn´t seem to interested in reading at the moment!

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