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Pinterest Scavenger Hunt – today’s clue!

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Multicultural Kid Blogs Pinterest Scavenger Hunt

The Pinterest Scavenger Hunt has officially begun!
 
This contest is sponsored by Multicultural Kid Blogs to celebrate the official launch of our website.
 
The Scavenger Hunt will run from July 15 to July 28.  Participants have until July 31 to submit their entries, and the drawing will take place on August 1.
 
You could win one of four fabulous prize packages!
 
Details about the Scavenger Hunt can be found below.
 

Today’s Clue

Learning a 3rd language at Denny’s

 Now take  a look around on this site and try to find the post that fits the clue.  Once you think you’ve found it, pin it to the Pinterest Board you’ve created just for this contest.

 A full schedule and rules of the game can be found below.   

How to Play:

Create a Pinterest board specifically for the contest and name the board “Multicultural Kid Blogs Pinterest Scavenger Hunt.”

Each day a new clue (or two!) will be revealed. Follow the clue to the blog of the day and pin the post described in the clue. (Any image from the post is fine).

The final clue will be given July 28. Participants will have until midnight Pacific time on July 31 to finalize their boards. The drawing will take place on August 1.

Winners must have pinned all of the correct posts to their board. Winners will be notified via email and must respond within 48 hours or another name will be drawn.

Good luck, explorers!

Scavenger Hunt Schedule

(Visit the Scavenger Hunt main page for a full list of clues as they are revealed).

July 15

All Done Monkey

Crystal’s Tiny Treasures

July 16

The Squishable Baby

SpanglishBaby

July 17

Be Bilingual

July 18

the piri-piri lexicon

MommyMaestra

July 19

Creative World of Varya

Expat Life With a Double Buggy

July 20

Sprout’s Bookshelf

Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns

July 21

Open Wide the World

MotherTongues

July 22

MarocMama

Head of the Heard

July 23

For the Love of Spanish

July 24

InCultureParent

July 25

Crafty Moms Share

The Art of Home Education

July 26

The European Mama

Spanish Playground

July 27

Vibrant Wanderings

A Hotchpotch Hijabi in Italy

July 28

Kids Yoga Stories

Adventure Bee

Final day to enter the contest is July 31, 2013, at midnight PDT. Drawing will take place on August 1, 2013.

 

Are you hearing that, too?

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Singing along to her "tunes" to the great delight of the rest of us.

Singing along to her “tunes” to the great delight of the rest of us.

It’s a beautiful, but hot day somewhere in New Mexico. We’ve been on the road for over a week and Sara, 7, is getting cranky. There is a bit of a culture shock happening, the food is too spicy for her delicate (picky) palate and it seems to frustrate her immensely that she can’t understand everything that is happening around her, let alone communicate with people.

Hoping to lighten the mood, I put on one of her favorite CDs with French songs from home. The whining stops and there is complete silence in the backseat. Then a hesitant whisper, in French, to the older sister: “Are you hearing this, too?”

“Of course”, she says and laughs. “Oh, good” says the little relieved voice. “Then it’s not just in my brain.”

From bilingual to trilingual – slowly but surely

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When our children were small and we would talk about their bilingualism with people in France, many of them would say that it was too bad that English wasn’t their second language. This would upset me greatly a) because  I knew they meant instead of Finnish and NOT instead of French and b) because I couldn’t understand how anything could be as useful to my children as having access to the native languages, and this way to the cultural heritage, of their parents.

Rationally I knew of course that I could have also introduced English (or another language) to my children when they were small, after all countless children around the world are raised trilingually! Still, I must admit that I was scared that it would somehow detract from them learning the two languages that mattered the most to our family. English was definitely going to be important one day in the future, but French and Finnish were necessary for communication right now. And quite frankly – it wasn’t like achieving just bilingualism was a walk in the park either!

Most Finnish children start learning their first foreign language at the age of 9 and while depending on the school there can be many choices, most choose English. At the French-Finnish school that our children attend, however, they consider French to be the first foreign language (even if it’s the language used for teaching other subjects, too) and English doesn’t come along until 2 years after their peers in monolingual schools have started studying it. I felt this was too late and figured that since I was teaching 3rd grade English anyway, I could maybe do it with Emma at home, too.

I ran into something called resistance. Not sure if you’ve ever heard of it, but it’s very frustrating. I tried to go around it, bought music CDs for the car, fun DVDs (Magic English with Donald Duck) and looked for websites (www.englishbyyourself.fr) to try to make it fun. Emma was 8 when we started and with our priority being to reinforce her French, the progress with English was very slow if not unnoticeable. When she was 9 I bought very cheap Easy jet tickets to Manchester for the two of us so that she could hear the language. It was a fun trip and even if she probably didn’t utter a single word in English herself she could now associate the language with fun things like Halloween candy, soccer and Fish&Chips! The year after she was slightly more motived as she knew we were traveling to the US for my high-school reunion. She could form basic sentences and could ask her new American friends simple questions, but still needed a lot of help to understand the answers. She discovered peanut butter and Dr Seuss and asked us if we could, please please mom, travel to the US again.

This year we did, but with a crazy work schedule and husband out of the country for 5 months I was back to being the French language police with no time for English. The language classes at school  finally started for Emma last fall and I vaguely noticed that she seemed to take an interest in the Girls magazines that I subscribed her to, but which had been too difficult for her until now. The first week in the US we were invited to dinner at friends’ house. Sara went to play with their children, but Emma, 12, preferred to stay with the adults. Her expressions and a few comments (in Finnish to me) showed me that she understood most of what we were talking about. The next night another dinner at another friend’s house who also had a preteen daughter. We did not see Emma all evening. “They’re talking!” exclaimed Sara when we asked her what the older girls were doing.

The iron was hot, it was time to strike – in other words look for language learning opportunities. Knowing that reading  is Emma’ s favorite way to learn we looked for anything that might be interesting. Here’s a great example from Denny’s which helped make our dinner both entertaining and educational as we looked for more questions online and made some up ourselves.

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As we were driving from California to Texas, the Kids ultimate U.S. roadtrip atlas was a great find and each time we crossed over to a new state we asked Emma to read us the fun facts, boredom busters and crazy traffic laws.

roadtrip

I could tell that she was starting to feel very good about her improving language skills and the proof came at a Walmart in New Mexico. “Mom, can you buy this book for me?” I had to control myself not to buy the whole series then and there, this was a definite déjà vu from when she had finally started to read in French.

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The little sister is now the one resisting to learn English. It’s still happening,  I know. Slowly, but surely.