Reply with quote #1
Hi, my name is Stefania Rebeka Rieger. I was born in Connecticut (US) in 1990. My parents, both hungarian, where ther with a scolarship at the university. They went to America in 1985 with my to elder sisters. We came home in 1991. In Hungary my mother, and sisters kept on speeking in english with me . The rest of the family in hungarian. I attended an american school for 1st and 2nd grade ( to learn basic reading and writing). At that time my mom whas afraid I would forget hungarian , so she changed to hungarian. Aftre that I started hungarian school , and since then I'm in hungarian school, but we never changed back to english. After geting into the hungarian school I started to read in english , watch english tv..... I still do all that. Basically until I was 10 years old I was living in an artificial american houshold- nickelodeon, family speaking in english, halloween .. all that. After changing the language to hungarian, we still kept on this "style".
The interresting thing about my story, is that I am bilingual but both my parent are the same nationality , we just picked this "american thing " up on tha way. And I am verry thanful to my mother for doing so. She has storys about people telling her its a horrible and stupid idea. But she didnt listen- Thank God! . But I have to say , as a bilibgual person - being bilingual is difficult when youre growing up . I had problems with writing ( as you can see I still have ) , and reading fast. Its confusing , when I'm thinking in english , but I'm talking in hungarian or the other way arould, but you get used to it. And it helps with other languages. Hungarian is in the Ural language family- thats nothing similar to the europen languages ( accept finnish). But english is different. It made studying other languages easyer. I speak german , italian(still studying) , english , hungarian. 3 years ago my sister gave birth to a little boy , and we (my sister and I) decided we will make him bilibgual as me. So we are the 2 people who only speak in english with him- and its great to see him understand both , and knowing that this will help him a bunch of stuff... I know this page is for grownups , so maybe they wont even post this , I just want to say , that if you have the option and the energy then you shouldn't hesitate. Knowing 2 languages perfectly is not just knowing 2 languages but it means that you can understand 2 cultures absolutly- and I think thats a great gift for any person so why deny it from youre child?
Reply with quote #2
Stefania, thank you so much for posting! I'm raising my 1 year old son trilingual and many times faces the difficulties your mother faced. I truly believe that giving my son the chance to learn more than one language is one of the best gifts I could give him. Your story makes me feel even more confident about what I'm doing.
Thanks again! Tereza