Thursday, June 5, 2008

And Mama does a little jig

I have a post brewing about the boys' favorite books in Spanish, and how I'm obsessed with finding new books for them. I read to them in English as well, but a lot of their favorite books to read with me are in Spanish.

We have a few books that include a Spanish and an English version of the story. And in very few, select cases, I sight-translate books for them--that is, the original is only in English, but I read it out loud in Spanish. (Yes, another form of translation/interpretation, a kind of hybrid.) I do that with some of the Little Quack books, because we do have two of them in Spanish and they're so repetitive that the ones in English are very easy to sight translate. Also, they've been favorites of the boys since they were about a year old.

But this post is about a small victory tonight. I was reading Little Quack's New Friend to the boys in Spanish before bedtime when P walked in the room. Primo grabbed the book, took it to his dad, and requested, "English!" P read it to them in English and then left the room. Whereupon Primo brought the book back to me and happily demanded, "EspaƱol!"

Primo has been code-switching depending on who's around for a while now, and Secondo has started to do so as well. But tonight you could have knocked me over with a feather.

My one thought was: Wow. This is working.



Snickollet said...


hcb said...


Our new house is in the school district of an elementary school that has a Spanish immersion program (one of the things we were looking for when house-hunting). Along with giving the Pickle a second language, I'm secretly hoping that it'll drive me to revisit my Spanish skills (two years in high school, 1.5 in college. End result, not a Spanish speaker).