Minority language users - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 09-06-2008, 12:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Does anyone else have a home language that is different than the cultural majority? If so, what do you do when your children need to interact with others and are not understood?

My DD is Deaf, so we use ASL. She doesn't speak well yet, so when she goes to the park or wherever, she is not able to communicate. It wasn't a problem when she was 2 or 3, but now that she is 5, it's getting tough.

I'm wondering how others deal with language barriers.
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#2 of 3 Old 09-06-2008, 01:48 PM
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It isn't exactly the same, but my youngest prefers to speak in Greek and my 4yo has forgotten a lot of his English since returning from a month in Greece. When we're out and either of them tries to communicate to another child in Greek, I will usually translate for them. It happens more with the younger (21months) because the 4yo is old enough that he understands that most people here (in the US) don't understand Greek, and he will use English when he can. For the younger, I will translate and say to him, "So and so doesn't understand Greek" so he gets that they don't understand and depending on the situation I may or may not elaborate further to whoever he was trying to communicate with.

I'm thinking that you probably do translate and that your dd is aware enough to grasp the concept that most people don't understand ASL? How does she respond? Does she ask you to translate for her?
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#3 of 3 Old 09-09-2008, 11:25 PM - Thread Starter
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She understands a little and tries to just use gestures and show them what she wants. She works really hard to get other kids to play with her. We do translate for her a lot. I suppose that is the best we can expect.
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