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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
<p>DD (3) is a really verbal kid. She loves language, word play, stories, word games, etc. She hasn't started reading yet, but she has started experimenting with foreign languages. Although DH and I only speak English, she has limited exposure to several other languages through friends and neighbors and in an obviously less interactive way through TV. <span><img alt="redface.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/redface.gif"> She asks constantly how to say random things in another language (she hasn't specified which one), and</span> <span>she has even resorted to making up her own language, which drives me CRAZY.</span></p>
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<p><span>How can I support this interest? I guess I am looking for something like Starfall, which she loves, for a foreign language. Or videos, maybe? We have a series of non-Disney fairy tales the kids watch in Spanish now, although I doubt she is learning anything from it. Is there something else, like Rosetta Stone for little ones? </span></p>
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<p>This comes in French, Spanish, and Italian:</p>
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<p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FLearn-Spanish-Together%2Fdp%2F1400023025" rel="norewrite" target="_blank">http://www.amazon.com/Learn-Spanish-Together/dp/1400023025</a></p>
 

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<p>My pronunciation is terrible, so I have avoided books, but the accompanying CDs seem great. She already knows how to count, her colors, and a few other nouns in Spanish, so we likely will start there. Thanks!</p>
 

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<p>We've been working on Arabic and Spanish with the kids. (Arabic, because it is my husband's first language and Spanish because our preschool and elementary school offer classes). Spanish has been much, much easier than Arabic, because the quality of materials available and chances for exposure is much higher (largely because my husband prefers communicating with the kids in English). So, I guess if your daugher has no interest in a particular language, I'd be inclined to go with Spanish, just for ease of exposure.</p>
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<p>Anyway, we've really liked the Little Pim videos. The Arabic version is only so-so, because they use classical Arabic (kind of the equivalent of learning only Biblical English), but for any language that does not have issues with a formal and informal dialect, it would be great: <a href="http://www.littlepim.com/" target="_blank">http://www.littlepim.com/</a>.</p>
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<p>Good luck!</p>
 

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<p>My dd recently started Mandarin. She takes classes in an after school program setting. In our area, there are also Saturday classes in various languages (well, at least Mandarin and Spanish) for pre-school aged kids (in fact, the Mandarin teacher offers "mommy and me" type classes for kids as young as 1). So you might want to check into something like that (start with your city's activity guide, if they have one). </p>
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<p>Also, with apologies that this is again Mandarin, which you have not expressed particular interest in, there are some great videos from the Mei Mei series. For example: </p>
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<p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FPlay-Learn-CHINESE-Mei-Vol%2Fdp%2FB000J3Q9SK%2Fref%3Dpd_sim_m_2" rel="norewrite" target="_blank">http://www.amazon.com/Play-Learn-CHINESE-Mei-Vol/dp/B000J3Q9SK/ref=pd_sim_m_2</a></p>
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<p>This series is really delightful--there is a lot of singing (and the songs are quite catchy). It reminds me a bit of Signing Time (except lower quality): the teacher presents some vocabulary, then uses it in a song. </p>
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<p>I'm not sure if other languages have similar dvds, but I suppose this is simply to illustrate that such things do exist and, imo, work much better for young children than something like a Rosetta Stone-style program. </p>
 

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<p>You can get podcasts of language lessons for free from the Itunes store. I highly recommend the "Coffee Break" series. It's short, very simple and oriented towards teaching conversation. I did most of the Coffee Break French lessons last spring and had a great time. It would be okay for a kid.</p>
 

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<p>Ah, I also wanted to mention: a good place to start your search is your local library. Ours has a section of Children's Instructional DVDs: some are related to sports, dance, drawing, etc., but mixed in a few for foreign languages: Signing Time, Mei Mei mentioned above, and I have seen some for Spanish and German (can't remember the titles or the format, however). But it is worth browsing around there, if only to get ideas.... </p>
 

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<p>Have you looked for or considered starting an multi-lingual/international focus playgroup? How about a preschool age language class? Our local rec centers offer a lot of such classes. They are usually just once or twice a week but they sing songs, play games and learn as they do it from a native speaker. It's a chance for kids to be a little immersed in a more interactive environment. Kids seem to pick up languages best from that.</p>
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<p>My DD (13) is just starting to learn Spanish in highschool. My DS (10) though speaks Spanish fluently and Mandarin conversationally which he learned being in a tri-lingual immersion school. He was always obsessed with foriegn languages but usually dead ones like Mayan when he was your DD's age. We spent a lot of time at cultural museums which seemed to spark his interest along with the languages. When this school popped up, we knew it was for him!</p>
 

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<p>DD was really into Spanish for a while, and these are the links I found for her:</p>
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<p><a href="http://www.kookerkids.com/spanish_games.htm" target="_blank">http://www.kookerkids.com/spanish_games.htm</a><br>
<a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/spanish/" target="_blank">http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/spanish/</a><br>
<a href="http://www.123teachme.com/learn_spanish/spanish_for_children" target="_blank">http://www.123teachme.com/learn_spanish/spanish_for_children</a><br>
<a href="http://anacleta.homestead.com/learnorreview.html" target="_blank">http://anacleta.homestead.com/learnorreview.html</a><br>
<a href="http://www.literacycenter.net/lessonview_es.htm#" target="_blank">http://www.literacycenter.net/lessonview_es.htm#</a><br>
<a href="http://www.babelpoint.com/" target="_blank">http://www.babelpoint.com/</a></p>
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<p>She also really likes <a href="http://www.uptoten.com/" target="_blank">Boowa & Kwala</a> and Poisson Rouge, which are both bilingual English/French. </p>
 

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<p>Here's my suggestions:</p>
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<p>- Playgroups in a different language</p>
<p>- If available in your neighborhood (and you're religious) a church in a foreign language</p>
<p>- Buy kids DVD's that come in different languages and just let her watch them in that language (you could check out amazon in Europe for other languages and have them shipped here)</p>
<p>- Learn a new language yourself and teach her while you learn!</p>
<p>- Many times you can find preschools that are bilingual or in a foreign language.</p>
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<p>Good luck!</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
<p>These suggestions give me a lot to think about. DD is enrolled in childcare/preschool two mornings a week currently while I work, but a foreign language immersion preschool program isn't an option with our budget. There are several foreign language Meetup playgroups, so I will check out those in our area, but we had such a hard time finding friends and playmates who supported our values and lifestyle that I hesitate to attempt non-AP playgroups again. Our community center doesn't have foreign language programs for preschoolers, and private programs that cost significant amounts of money are not an option, unfortunately.</p>
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<p>I will check out the links shortly. Thanks!</p>
 

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<p>How big is your preschool? Ours brings in a language teacher once a week, and they have enough participants that it only costs $2/week per child. Maybe you could ask the preschool if they'd be willing to see if there is enough interest to bring in a language teacher?<br>
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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>SeekingJoy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1286722/supporting-a-preschooler-s-interest-in-foreign-languages#post_16135457"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>These suggestions give me a lot to think about. DD is enrolled in childcare/preschool two mornings a week currently while I work, but a foreign language immersion preschool program isn't an option with our budget. There are several foreign language Meetup playgroups, so I will check out those in our area, but we had such a hard time finding friends and playmates who supported our values and lifestyle that I hesitate to attempt non-AP playgroups again. Our community center doesn't have foreign language programs for preschoolers, and private programs that cost significant amounts of money are not an option, unfortunately.</p>
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<p>I will check out the links shortly. Thanks!</p>
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<p>The Usborne "first thousand words in" books are excellent. They associate pictures with words and have translations in the back to make sure it's clear what concept is being expressed by a given picture.</p>
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<p>Most DVDs have at least one language option other than English, some come with foreign language subtitles too which, for romantic languages at least, would help you make out where the words are.</p>
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<p>For Spanish, Pocoyo is utterly awesome and has a lot of episodes available on YouTube.</p>
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<p>For Japanese, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=382DCEB7BCFD4965" target="_blank">this YouTube playlist</a> will get you into the area of kid-oriented videos in Japanese 4, 8, 12, 30, and 37 are particularly good for vocabulary learning.</p>
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<p>The Little Pim series is at the preschool or even toddler level and is available in several languages.</p>
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<p>At 3, exposure to the language is probably as important as individual words. I'd figure out some of the words from the DVDs you already have and teach those to her so she can start making out where they occur in the DVDs. That'll help her anchor other words.</p>
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<p>Oh! And if you've got a university in your area, maybe an foreign student would be available for tutoring.</p>
 

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<p>You might have better luck with international playgroups than your think. We were part of one (well, sort of accidentaly interational.) We had a family from Germany and one from Sweden. We had two families whose parents immigrated from China as children themselves. Then there were those of us who weren't multi-lingual but had cultural ties from our own families. They were all very AP, encouraged exploration and self-paced development.... basically, WAY more relaxed than your typical american mother group lol. It was more a cultural group than a foriegn language group but we loved it and still have reunions though our kids are all teenagers now! Be prepared though, many of the little ones that live in multi-language homes are rather quiet at first. Don't mistake them for not being bright... they can just seem not as verbal in the young ages.</p>
 

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<p>for now what you can do is borrow rhymes and songs in various languages from the public library.</p>
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<p>i was lucky that until 3 dd had access to multiple languages through friends and neighbours. her first clearly spoken words were not in english and her first speech was in 6 different languages 3 of which i did not know so it was hard on me. </p>
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<p>i have always noticed dd has always even as a newborn responded to rhythm and rhyme more than anything else. i recall she just enjoyed listening to the cds even if she didnt know what it meant. </p>
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<p>if you do tv dd and i watched foreign cartoons on youtube. i loved it coz of the cultural nuances she picked up. </p>
<p>spanish <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFErcFMkOgU" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFErcFMkOgU</a></p>
 
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