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  1. #1
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    Default Kids not wanting to speak English and Spanish accents

    I'm having a problem....Victor, my youngest child, at this point its like pulling teeth to get him to speak English and when he does, he has a spanish accent.

    Victor had just turned 2 when we moved to DR. He spoke English well (as well as any 2 year old) and only knew a little Spanish. Now, he will be 4 next month and its a fight to get him to speak English. He has forgotten most of it and now will say words but not sentences. For example, he knows the word for helado is "ice cream" but he can't say "Mommy, can I have some ice cream". He knows some of the words in English for some of the colors, and different objects like truck, car, house, etc.

    I have tried many things including only speaking to him in English which is difficult because he looks at me like I have 3 heads. I have told my other children to only speak to him in English but I don't know how consistent they are with that when I'm working in NYC because anytime I call and speak to them and then ask them to put Victor on the phone they scream..."Victor! Mami te llama!!!" so I don't know if they are speaking English when I am not home and my assumption is that they are not.

    I have stopped speaking English to him on the phone because he truly doesn't understand and I just get back silence or he says to Bertania in the background "Que dice ella?" But when I am at home I try my best to remember only to speak English to him (I will admit though, that I don't remember all of the time).

    I buy him books in English for his age and read to him in English and also tell my kids when I'm gone they are to read the books to him in English. But even while reading the books, all of his comments are in Spanish. For example, I got him a book about "No more monkeys jumping on the bed" and I'll read "3 little monkeys were jumping on the bed. One fell off and bumped his head..." and he points and says "Se cayó!" The only things he remembers in English are things that I said a lot when he was younger and I guess they stuck in his head such as "You ready to take a bath?" he will say "Si" and start getting his toys together but if I say "Where is your towel?" He stands there with the crazy face. I repeat and repeat but he doesn't understand and then of course I break down and say "Donde esta la toalla tuya?" and then he goes to get it.

    The accent thing is what has me the most concerned. When I do get him to say English words he has a Spanish accent. For example, Bertania has taught him this thing where she asks him "Victor, do you speak English?" and my daughter has taught him to say "Yes, a little bit" but no matter how much I pronounce the words out to him, his sentence always comes out sounding like "Yays, a leeddle beet". Or McDonald's he says "Yay! Vamos pa' Mec-dough-nalls"

    I am very proud of my children being bilingual. The other 2 of course, have no Spanish accent with their English and no English accent with their Spanish. And they read and write in both languages. Their school is a Dominican school so its all Spanish but I buy them books (in English), they read a lot, and I have them write me reports in English on the books that they read to keep their English skills up. But Victor, pobrecito, is behind the game.

    So, I've tried
    -only speaking to him in English (I admit, I can do better with that)
    -buying him English books and reading to him in English
    -teaching him little by little, starting with just words (when he points and says "Un camión mami, un camión!", I say "Yes, that's a truck")

    What have you guys done who brought kids here at a small age? Is the accent something that he's just going to have or will that ever go away? I don't think it will because I have met many professional hispanics that speak perfect English but the Hispanic accent is still there.

    I just would like to know what others have done to increase the English comprehension and vocabulary in their children.

    Thanks

    SHALENA

  2. #2
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    Oh, I forgot. Also when I am home I change his cartoons to English speaking (the ones that can be changed) but he doesn't like that and gets upset and the last thing I want to do is make him not like English. So I usually give up and change the language back to Spanish.

    SHALENA

  3. #3
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    My step son came here when he was 4. He spoke only Spanish. Now he only speaks English and gets mad when you talk to him in Spanish and has a very hard time speaking Spanish as well.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank the Tank View Post
    My step son came here when he was 4. He spoke only Spanish. Now he only speaks English and gets mad when you talk to him in Spanish and has a very hard time speaking Spanish as well.
    I have heard that from many Hispanics that moved to the US with young children. What I don't want to happen is what I see so much in the US, Hispanic children who can't speak, read, or write Spanish. My children all know that I expect them to go to college in the States (although I know that when they get of age, ultimately that will be their decision).

    But I don't want him to hate English and I don't want to make learning it a chore. I think my first priority is to stop falling back on the Spanish when he doesn't understand me but its easier said than done. Was just wondering if there were any other tricks or methods others have used.

    SHALENA

  5. #5
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    Hello to the beautiful Shalena, most of my nephews don't speak Spanish in Miami. The girls usually can get by and are better at being bilingual but the boys, almost 5 of them know very little spanish and when they do they speak horrible spanish like the kind Criss Colon probably speaks.

    LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCC

  6. Likes Criss Colon liked this post
  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKing View Post
    I'm having a problem....Victor, my youngest child, at this point its like pulling teeth to get him to speak English and when he does, he has a spanish accent.

    Victor had just turned 2 when we moved to DR. He spoke English well (as well as any 2 year old) and only knew a little Spanish. Now, he will be 4 next month and its a fight to get him to speak English. He has forgotten most of it and now will say words but not sentences. For example, he knows the word for helado is "ice cream" but he can't say "Mommy, can I have some ice cream". He knows some of the words in English for some of the colors, and different objects like truck, car, house, etc.

    I have tried many things including only speaking to him in English which is difficult because he looks at me like I have 3 heads. I have told my other children to only speak to him in English but I don't know how consistent they are with that when I'm working in NYC because anytime I call and speak to them and then ask them to put Victor on the phone they scream..."Victor! Mami te llama!!!" so I don't know if they are speaking English when I am not home and my assumption is that they are not.

    I have stopped speaking English to him on the phone because he truly doesn't understand and I just get back silence or he says to Bertania in the background "Que dice ella?" But when I am at home I try my best to remember only to speak English to him (I will admit though, that I don't remember all of the time).

    I buy him books in English for his age and read to him in English and also tell my kids when I'm gone they are to read the books to him in English. But even while reading the books, all of his comments are in Spanish. For example, I got him a book about "No more monkeys jumping on the bed" and I'll read "3 little monkeys were jumping on the bed. One fell off and bumped his head..." and he points and says "Se cayó!" The only things he remembers in English are things that I said a lot when he was younger and I guess they stuck in his head such as "You ready to take a bath?" he will say "Si" and start getting his toys together but if I say "Where is your towel?" He stands there with the crazy face. I repeat and repeat but he doesn't understand and then of course I break down and say "Donde esta la toalla tuya?" and then he goes to get it.

    The accent thing is what has me the most concerned. When I do get him to say English words he has a Spanish accent. For example, Bertania has taught him this thing where she asks him "Victor, do you speak English?" and my daughter has taught him to say "Yes, a little bit" but no matter how much I pronounce the words out to him, his sentence always comes out sounding like "Yays, a leeddle beet". Or McDonald's he says "Yay! Vamos pa' Mec-dough-nalls"

    I am very proud of my children being bilingual. The other 2 of course, have no Spanish accent with their English and no English accent with their Spanish. And they read and write in both languages. Their school is a Dominican school so its all Spanish but I buy them books (in English), they read a lot, and I have them write me reports in English on the books that they read to keep their English skills up. But Victor, pobrecito, is behind the game.

    So, I've tried
    -only speaking to him in English (I admit, I can do better with that)
    -buying him English books and reading to him in English
    -teaching him little by little, starting with just words (when he points and says "Un camión mami, un camión!", I say "Yes, that's a truck")

    What have you guys done who brought kids here at a small age? Is the accent something that he's just going to have or will that ever go away? I don't think it will because I have met many professional hispanics that speak perfect English but the Hispanic accent is still there.

    I just would like to know what others have done to increase the English comprehension and vocabulary in their children.

    Thanks

    SHALENA
    Put him in a bilingual school where English is for the majority of classes.

  8. #7
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    Hello to the beautiful Shalena, most of my nephews don't speak Spanish in Miami. The girls usually can get by and are better at being bilingual but the boys, almost 5 of them know very little spanish and when they do they speak horrible spanish like the kind Criss Colon probably speaks.

    LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCC

  9. Likes Criss Colon liked this post
  10. #8
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    My little brother was a master at memorization, he was already in 3rd grade and he couldn't write or read spanish well and it was starting to show in his grades. So we were teaching him how to read. What he would do was memorize the whole thing you would tell him and then act like he was reading it back to you!! HA!
    He sure had us all fooled, but his grades didn't get better, so he got busted, eventually la maestra tutored him and he got a little better.

    LLCC

  11. Likes SKing liked this post
  12. #9
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    Shalena, do not get frustrated, what you need to do is say it English and then
    repeat it in Spanish (that way he will know what it means) each time. That is how
    I taught my children and now I'm teaching my grandchildren the same way.

    I tell my grandchildren: Quieres jugo? Do you want juice? If you do this all the time,
    continuously, he will pick it up. Trust me.
    Last edited by bronzeallspice; 04-08-2014 at 03:05 PM.

  13. #10
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    You have to speak to him in English, there is no secret. Bilingual kids I know speak their language because that is what was spoken to them at home. He probably understands more than you think, children are sponge at that age.

    I only speak with my children in French and they reply in English 99 % of the time. When they are in a situation where the person in front of them doesn't speak English, their French magically comes back. I am lucky because my mother who doesn't speak a lick of English stays yearly with us, so does one of my nephew, that is how their French stay current (if you have a relative your son's age that could do the trick).

    Don't stress about it, your son will be bilingual as your other children and the accent will be gone.

  14. Likes SKing, mountainannie, MerengueDutchie liked this post
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