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Kenley Pelzer
Reply with quote  #1 
I am trying to raise my baby (6 months old) with French, Spanish, and English. I had hoped that my mother-in-law, for whom French is her first language, would speak in French to him all of the time. Unfortunately (no matter how many times I remind her) she constantly forgets, and ends up speaking one sentence in English, the next in French, and back and forth. I am worried that the possibility of confusion outweighs the benefits of hearing French from a native speaker (for me it is my third language and my French is far from perfect!). I am considering asking her to speak only English to him for fear of confusion issues. Thoughts?
Reply with quote  #2 
I've no answers, but would be interested to know if you got any.  My wife speaks Portuguese and English fluently.  I also speak both.  My wife (the primary carer) speaks to our baby in a mix of the two languages, literally sentence to sentence.  I speak to him in English and my wife and I speak English to each other.  I want to know whether my wife should make an effort to speak to him in Portuguese only  to best aid his development.
Reply with quote  #3 
I am fluent in Korean but my husband only speaks English.I've tried to speak Korean to our daughter exclusively in order to expose her to Korean but decided against it because it became too difficult and uncomfortable.Now I am re-considering it and am wondering if it's okay for me to go back and forth between English and Korean. Our daughter is 15 months old and she knows about 15 English words.We don't have Korean relatives or friends nearby who can motivate her to speak Korean on daily basis and I don't expect her to be equally fluent in Korean. We understand the developmental and cognitive advantages of multilingual environment and want to cultivate that the best way we can without confusing her or frustrating her (and me). Should I set aside a time of day that I only speak Korean or would it be ok to go back and forth? I started reading to her in Korean today. Need some additional suggestions from experienced moms or experts.
Maman Macey
Reply with quote  #4 
The question of how to get around OPOL in the least confusing way is something I'm trying to find some answers to too. I speak three languages (English, French and Spanish) and unfortunately my husband only speaks English (which also happens to be my mother tongue). I have heard anecdotes of other mothers speaking several languages to their child without and problem but would like to read some research on it. At the moment I am thinking of speaking mainly French and perhaps dedicating some special time to spanish and to english for reading and song. I am thinking about doing these in a particular part of the house or about wearing particular clothes or hats during this 'special time' to help the baby distinguish between them. I should add that the baby is due in 2 months time and I am currently reading to him and talking to him in French to get used to the idea.
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