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I am a latinamerican and live in the USA. I mostly speak Spanish at home. So I was expecting that my baby boy would started speaking only Spanish. When he turn 2, he almost didn't speak at all! He only said between 9 to 12 words like: mama, papa, coco(comida=food) and pointed to whatever he wanted instead of speaking. He liked watching programs in English (Sesame Street, Barney) and seemed to understand them. So I enrolled him on a state program which teaches little children with speech problems.
Now my son is 3 1/2 and he has progressed a lot. He can say 3 word sentences and is already trying with 4 and sometimes 5. But, he mostly speaks in English(80%) and the few words that he says in Spanish are inside English sentences: I quiero milk please. I want leche por favor. He still has problems with pronouncing words, specially the 'r', 'f' and 'l'; he doesn't say the last letters of many words: '-ed', '-t', etc. He doesn't like me to read books for him. He has no patience for that. He doesn't like painting or doing anything that requires him to be seating down. Now I don't know if I should try to push him into speaking more Spanish, I want him to be bilingual but I don't want to interrupt his learning and confuse him more. My questions, for any of you that can help me, are: - Should I push him into speaking more Spanish at home? If the answer is Yes, How can I do this without interfering with his learning of English, without discouraging him to continue learning English? - Should I try to make him stop mixing both languages? or Should I wait to see if he does it by his own? I am so glad that he is finally speaking SOMETHING that I'm insecure about teaching him also Spanish now. If any of you has ideas, suggestions, anything that can help me: Thank You in advance!
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I believe that with time he will figure out the differences between Spanish and English in conversation and not mix them as much. If you try speaking to him more in Spanish at home, I believe that will help with the exposure. If you have been speaking to him in Spanish, he must be understanding what you are saying. Maybe you could ask him if he would try speaking to you in Spanish, or if you could alternate days in Spanish/English.