Swedish / English(6 Posts)
I'm English with Swedish DH. We really want our baby due April to be bilingual. I can speak conversational Swedish but have never lived there or had lessons. It's hard to get DH to speak to me in Swedish for practice as he's so fluent in English. However he knows obviously that for our baby to grow up bilingual he will need to - and hopefully that will help me learn too!
Anyway I was wondering if anyone else is in a similar position, with a Swedish partner, if you have any tips regarding resources e.g. bilingual books, dvds etc? Or if anyone in SW London/surrey fancies some language practice!
I met a mum in Asda the other day, she was chatting to her 4yr old DD in Swedish,and each time the little girl replied in in a very much perfect English accent.
I asked her mum about it, and she said that her she speaks only Swedish, but her DH/school spoke English which was the biggest influence, but as long as her DD understood Swedish she wasn't concerned, as DD would eventually speak her mothers tongue.
There is a couple of Facebook groups that may be good: svenska som modersmal utomlands and svenskar I storbritannien. The Swedish church in Marylebone has a baby group every Tuesday. Loads of Swedes around!
We do OPOL, one parent one language, as we have a third language as well.
Your husband needs to make an effort to only speak swedish to your child to make it actually work. Most men give up out of being lazy! But as long as he is committed then it can work with your support. You should also play swedish music, cartoons when your child is old enough, read books in swedish etc. I tried this and even got a norwegian nanny, but my husband refused to bother speaking norwegian to the kids so we switched to french. or I should say, I switched to french, as norwegian is not my language and I have much more support in french. Now my daughter goes to a french bilingual school and doing really well! So proud of her!
Maybe you could hang out a lot more on "Familjeliv.se" the equivalent of mumsnet in Swedish, and hang around the websites "sverigesradio.se" or "svt.se", and more importantly "svtplay.se", "urplay.se", "urskola.se" and "sverigesradio.se/radioapan".
My husbands mum was from a town in North East England and moved to Sweden with a Swedish husband, and no particular effort was made to teach my husband English when he grew up, so these days I figure my level of English (I'm Swedish throughout and only have whatever English I was taught in school) is far better than my husband's in spite of the, um-hum, proud heritage of half of the family tree coming from the North East. For my part, I learn contemporary English partially by hanging out here, on other sites, and by accessing and reading English papers on a daily basis. Nowadays I couldn't stand taking proper language courses ("say after me, please"), but I did go to a school and took lessons once. I had a couple of penpals in the UK, but one died this last fall, sadly, and the other hasn't been heard of for years, a bit sad that too, and it annoys me a because it should be like nothing - penpals come and go - but feels like it's a bit of a loss frankly. Reminds me I must find another one.
Anyway, all of my cousins were Swiss, as a result of my aunt having moved there as a teenager (with someone she met on a short French language course as it were, which also resulted in my mum the younger sister wasn't allowed to go). Hence, the cousins were forced to learn Swedish as children, in order to speak with granny, where he was forced to spend is summers whilst his pals went to funny summer camps as boy scouts. As a result the elder one of them hated Swedish with a passion, and long vowed not to set foot in the country, from what I was told, and in fact I never met him, apart from once, so he kept his promise I guess. Being bilingual is tricky.
Are you planning on going on holiday often? I guess that could be a way of keeping up the practice, too.
Can you access the app sf børn? It costs £5 a month but then youve got lots of tv series in swedish. Not great for a baby but could be useful for a toddler.
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