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Learning french or spanish as a family?

(3 Posts)
SoftFroggie Thu 07-Apr-05 11:29:49

I have a (nutty?) idea of learning a language as a family, introducing it via various books / DVDs / holidays etc as the kids grow up. We are wondering whether to 'go for' french or spanish...

both have wide resources available, European countries where we could holiday and are spoken in countries further away if we want 'adventures' (Africa / S America) / child sponsorship etc

I beleive French is taught just about everywhere when they get to 2ndary school, but Spanish is less common. Think this makes French a better option.

we both learnt French at school to O / GCSE, and I've done occasional French courses since; neither of us has done any Spanish, although DH has very basic Portugese and I did Latin at school which might help(?). 'Doing' a language we are both familiar with would help with introducing it to the kids, but OTOH a new one would be fun for all of us.

What do you all think?

lunavix Thu 07-Apr-05 11:36:50

We want to learn spanish as a family simply because we don't like holidays in france much! Would much rather spend more time in Spain!

Ellbell Thu 07-Apr-05 16:02:43


How old are your children, SoftFroggie?

Have you thought about Italian? Not too difficult to learn (at least to level of basic communication) and the Latin and French would be helpful. Pronunciation is easy to master.

I suppose it depends how much you want to learn, but if you do a lot of French and then your children learn it again at secondary school they run the risk of being bored at school and possibly being turned off languages altogether, which would be a shame.

On the other hand, there is a danger that if you ALL start a new language from scratch you have very little in the way of 'correction' of mistakes, which means that you all pick up one another's mistakes/mis-pronunciations and have no way of knowing what is right/wrong. Whereas if you did French, you and your DH would be better able to act as 'teachers', even if you were also improving your own knowledge of the language at the same time.

Good luck anyway. It's a good idea. I've taught my dds odd words of Italian and French (am working on French at the moment as we're going there this summer) but nothing very systematic.

Let us know how you get on.

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