Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Button-poppin' time!!

A story to share:

Returning from our excursion to Dali, we had about a fifteen minute walk from the bus stop to our apartment. Usually, whenever we walk to/from anywhere, E. grabs G.'s hand and C. holds mine the whole distance. But, this time, as soon as we got inside the campus gate, C. and E. broke free and started walking with their arms around each other. This is a very common scenario, friends (girls with girls, boys with boys, girls and boys) of all ages walk around this way. As the kids were walking, they spoke Mandarin to each other the entire way home - and still with their arms around each other - up the four flights of stairs - just chatting and laughing, absorbed in their own little world. Real Chinese! E. usually will speak to people on the bus, etc. in Chinese, but this is the first time C. spoke Mandarin in front of us! His teacher told us he speaks to her and his classmates in Chinese all the time. Almost 4 months of language immersion and so impressive. We are so proud of their willingness to try and positive attitude. Payoff! - this is why we made the sacrifice to come to the unknown.

Malinda, whose blog Xiamen Adventure that I followed last year, commented that after one semester in a Chinese preschool, her daughters were beginning to really take off in the language. And now, we are hearing those same sweet sounds. The kids cheerfully go to school everyday without a complaint. They speak Chinese during the day, and when returning at night, switch to Spanish with G. and English with me, all with ease. Our kids are on the way to being trilingual. The hardest part will come - maintaining and expanding the three languages once we're home. But you bet, as language teachers, we have a plan in mind.

1 comment:

Nancy said...

This is precious.