Making sure your child keeps speaking Spanish is hard they enroll in an English immersion program.

Making sure your child keeps speaking Spanish is hard they enroll in an English immersion program. (Photo courtesy Flickr/mrchrishill)

SpanglishBaby: Maintaining Spanish at home when your child’s exposed to only English in school

Nena, aquí es donde vas aprender inglés, pero con mami y papi vas a seguir hablando español, ¿okay?” (This is where you are going to learn English, but with mom and dad you’ll continue speaking Spanish, okay?)

Mami y Papi español.” (Mom and Dad Spanish.)

Si, en la casita de Sabrina hablamos español.” (Yes, at Sabrina’s home we speak Spanish.)

Casita español, mami.” (Little house Spanish, mommy.)

I had a knot in my throat and my eyes were beginning to swell up with tears as I kissed my  2 1/2-year old’s forehead. This was her first day in an English immersion setting. From the day she was born her interactions with others (including daycare) occurred +90% of the time in Spanish. I knew that today and the weeks to come marked a new chapter in her life. I knew that it would likely change her. I knew that she would learn English at an extremely fast pace given the amount of exposure she would have — she was also going full-time to daycare for the first time. What I feared most was that our Spanish-speaking relationship would change.

To read the rest of this post go to www.SpanglishBaby.com.

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