To worry about DCs picking up very strong regional accent?

(319 Posts)
honourinoneeye Mon 07-Jul-14 18:32:54

DH has been looking for a job near his elderly father for a while, and secured one last month. The in-laws live in an area that is pretty much synonymous with deprivation and poverty - their home and immediate area (street, estate) is lovely but the area as a whole is pretty dire.

I have been concerned about the effects living somewhere like this may have on children but one thing in particular I'm a bit worried about is the accent. It's very, very thick - even "well spoken" people have what I and most others would consider to be a broad accent.

At any rate, this week we have been in a premier inn to buy a house and find schools and get things sorted for September. My twins will be going into year 2 and their teacher 'mocked' my dd's accent - not nastily, but nonetheless it was there. I also noticed the TA spoke with a strong accent with numerous grammatical errors - "you was staying in a hotel?" complete with dropped 'h's' blush

I was a teacher pre DC and have worked in some very deprived schools but such an accent would undoubtedly hold people back, I really can't explain how strong it is! I don't mean I'm judging people for it (I do for the bad grammar) but just the same, I can't pretend I'd be happy about my children picking up such a thick accent and I do feel it would be detrimental to their future.

So - any ways around this?

Wossname Mon 07-Jul-14 18:35:12

Nah, don't worry aba it though, it'll be sound

VictorianGrandchild Mon 07-Jul-14 18:36:32

I correct my children constantly. As a consequence they have several accents. One for home, one with their peers and one when out socially or for interviews.

Accents are important

MrsCampbellBlack Mon 07-Jul-14 18:36:45

I think it will be hard to prevent them picking up an accent to be honest.

CrohnicallyExhausted Mon 07-Jul-14 18:37:01

They may well pick up the local accent, but if you continue to speak in your accent and correct grammatical errors, they will probably learn both ways to speak. At least that's what happened to me! I speak with a broad accent with peers and use a modulated version around my parents, at work etc. I don't really notice I'm doing it (unless I broaden my accent on purpose at work).

bellarations Mon 07-Jul-14 18:37:36

Yab vvvvu
& ridiculous!
Anyone who judges another based on their accent, is not worth bothering with.
There are stereotypical ideas based on many accents , they too are ridiculous.

FluffyPiggle Mon 07-Jul-14 18:38:33

I'll be watching this thread with interest. I have a Portsmouth accent and my oh is Bristolian. God knows what mine is going to sound like!

StrawberryCheese Mon 07-Jul-14 18:38:54

I grew up in different areas and to be honest my accent remained quite neutral, just like my parents. It's only now that I'm married to a Scotsman that I am picking up a bit of a Scottish twang.

LastTango Mon 07-Jul-14 18:39:19

We have lived in Devon and Cornwall for 30 years. My accent is true East End of London. My son speaks with a very slight burr on some words........but that is all. You wouldn't know where he came from if he was anywhere else in the country.

honourinoneeye Mon 07-Jul-14 18:39:32

Bella, it isn't ridiculous unfortunately - I say it with a heavy heart, but there is absolutely no way this accent (not a mild, slight version but really you have to hear it to believe it!) would be taken seriously in a law court, or in city banking, or politics.

It just wouldn't: that's an unfortunate fact. It may be wrong, but just the same I'm reluctant to effectively disadvantage my children.

DogCalledRudis Mon 07-Jul-14 18:40:05

My elderly neighbour tells me that accent grows from the ground. He helps children fix bicycles. From his observation, whatever ethnicity children are, they all speak perfect local.

Bowlersarm Mon 07-Jul-14 18:40:10


But it depends on the accent. I love any northern accent, but southern accents (where we are) less so.

In my experience, it's their friends/peers who they end up speaking the same as, not the parents.

expatinscotland Mon 07-Jul-14 18:40:39

I can't see a way around it, tbh. I wouldn't have moved there if I had such concerns.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Mon 07-Jul-14 18:40:59

Are you moving to Derby by any chance? The was instead were really pisses me off, but its a regional thing. I say them instead of those so I can't really complain grin

honourinoneeye Mon 07-Jul-14 18:41:29

We have lived in a few different areas and every time I have noticed slight accents. Most are pretty nice.

This is - gosh, not sure how to explain. Almost like a different language. And it isn't a "pretty" accent: it's nasal and sounds a bit whiny. Plus three of my four children have names beginning with H which sound dreadful now!

amy83firsttimer Mon 07-Jul-14 18:41:42

Private school an option??

lionheart Mon 07-Jul-14 18:42:05

I think there was a similar thread on here a few weeks ago, about a Liverpool accent. Lots of people came on to point out that their children could and did move quite fluidly between the regional accent and other forms of articulation.

Accents wouldn't bother me but the whole "you was" "I don't that" type stuff would bother me.

"I done that" even!

honourinoneeye Mon 07-Jul-14 18:42:32

Not derby; although we used to live in Burton upon Trent.

I didn't really notice a strong accent around there: slight Brummie but nothing too strong.

honourinoneeye Mon 07-Jul-14 18:43:15

Amy, unfortunately not. I've gone through the figures and we just can't afford it for four children.

myusernameis Mon 07-Jul-14 18:43:36

I wouldn't be happy with the teacher mocking your dd's accent!

I'm originally from a deprived area with a strong accent but people have said I sound neutral or posh. My siblings sound a bit more local than I do but still are well spoken and we're all able to mould our speech to the appropriate context so have no problems in professional settings.

We were taught at home to speak 'correctly' and my mum would always pick us up on any dropped h's or t's and grammatical mistakes.

I wouldn't get too hung up on it, accents are great and they will naturally pick up bits anyway. Focus on making sure they speak properly in earshot of you so you know they have the capability of doing so when needed.

I'm dying to know where it is. I grew up in a similar sounding area, my mum was hot on correcting me when I slipped into local slang. I have an accent but it's not held me back. As a pp said you develop an accent for home, one for peers etc.
Did your dh grow up there? Surely you're being a bit insulting to him if he did.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Mon 07-Jul-14 18:45:03

Where are you moving? Liverpool? I think thats the only regional accent that grates on me. As accents go derbyshire doesn't really have strong ones, just regional phrases like 'duck' and 'cob' grin

WestEast Mon 07-Jul-14 18:45:42

I think it makes you sound like a bit of a snob.

And I say that in my broadest Hull accent.

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