Friday, March 30, 2012

Lost in translation!

Or I can only wish it was that easy. A couple of weeks ago I had stated about how I love having immigrant children in our programs and seeing them progress over the months. Well  my new little princess is definitely a challenge for all of us, but she is just one sweetie and I think we will learn more of her language before she knows English. Somehow she flew in under the radar, because she is age wise a little bit too young for our programs, well not according to the Leisure Guide where a misprint or oversight of the proof reader changed the age group for our programs. She has never been away from mom, the parents barely speak English, she doesn't understand one word of English, therefore doesn't speak a word of English, and has typical behaviours for her age, so putting this all together it makes for very busy and loud mornings . Well you watch a 22 months old throw a temper tantrum in a foreign language in front of you and we will see how you do. LOL. No matter what we say to her, she doesn't understand it, she gets more aggravated with us the longer the tantrum goes on because we have no idea what she wants and cant help her. So basically cuddling her and comforting her with a soothing voice has been the best trick so far. For the first few times she had not shown any interest in playing no matter what you show her or try to do with her, but yesterday she actually stopped crying long enough to watch the other kids play and I got her do a little bit of gluing, all while hanging on to me for dear life. Thank God she is just a little featherweight and easy to hang on to, but it sure makes it hard to tend the rest of the kids with one hand. LOL. Since mom really has no other choice than to keep her in the program it will be interesting to see how long it will take her to be able to play and join in with the other kids, and I bet once she will do that she will pick up English in no time whatsoever. It must be so hard and scary to be somewhere were you are not understood nor  understand anything. Besides my little my princess we also have a four year old boy who doesn't speak a word of English, it's amazing what he has picked up already in the last two weeks, he comes three times a week and is eager to learn, we got all his colours packed down as well as his numbers and letters. Even at circle time he is trying to mimic the words we sing. It's so much fun to watch him and his smile getting bigger and bigger each day. We do have some awesome kids in the program. And yes we are not suppose to have favourites, but sometimes you just can't help yourself and my little princess is definitely a front runner despite the piercing screams. :) Seeing them succeed makes it all worth it in the end....just hope she doesn't end up with a German accent my kids.
Oh, taking about accents, this makes me smile every time, people constantly ask me what my accent is and then are totally perplexed when I tell them. Ok, I can listen to myself speak and yes I definitely hear my German accent, but then hardly ever is it guessed as a German accent, I have gotten so many different places that it makes me wonder....the latest ones have been "somewhere from the Islands", from Boston and yesterday I got "South Africa"...wonder what they hear that I don't hear. Lol.  Wonder if I proclaim a South African accent they would say...oh you sound German lol. This might be worth a try. I would think it is so much more exciting to come from there than Germany. What do you think?


Sharon said...

Accents - I get "You're not from around here, are you?" After 30 years, you would think some of it would have rubbed off...

Oh, that poor little girl! Your job must be a nightmare! That is awfully young.

Tina said...

You would think eh? lol ha ha the "eh" is Canadian lol

Cat said...

I don't know, but I have been told several times when out of the area I have an accent. I wonder... I hear it as a "lack" of an accent. Odd. But, look at it this way, you keep them guessing! And it sounds like you have your hands full in more ways than one!!


Joan said...

When I lived in Canada in 1970, someone asked me what my first language was. Still scratching my head over that one.

Good luck with all your little ones, more than I could handle for sure.