As some of you might know, we are a trilingual family, but I have a confession to make.
We really only speak English at home.
While we may use the occasional German or Hebrew word, we have been very lazy.
Our songs have slowly become English songs and our book baskets are filled with only English books.
Seeing as only one of our little ones actually talks this has not been a huge problem, but it still seems wrong that English is the only language we speak.
This morning I decided that it’s time to change that.
We are going to be a German speaking family for 100 days.
The preparations did not take long, the book baskets have been emptied of all the English books and filled up with German books.
Some of the German books are even still unread, sent by friends and family and put on a shelf, so it will be great fun to discover new stories together.
We filled three book-baskets with the most interesting looking German books, and we will swap them for books from the German bookshelf as we read them.
I put away our English toys and replaced them with some toys that seem German to the little ones, mostly because they came from Germany or have German names.
(From left to right there is Rudi, Lotta, Wau-Wau-Wau the dog, Hoppel the bunny and Affe the monkey.)
I was surprised to find one of Emily’s favourite books on our German bookshelf, “Gib Mir Einen Kuss, Frau Nuss!” (“Give me a kiss, Mrs. Nuss!”) we were all quite sure that we had lost it when we moved into this house over a year ago. (I wrote a little bit about that book here!)
Deciding to just speak one language for 100 days has already been a blessing, as many old favourite books have been rediscovered.
I think, thanks to our collection of German books, it will not be too difficult to speak German for 100 days, even though the first few days might be challenging.
We have started gently, by reading many of our books already this morning. Emily has started to pick up on the German pronunciation and can read many of the books by herself, even though she still asks what many of the words mean.
Even after just a morning of German her memory of many of the words are returning, shyly asking “Mama, may I essen einen Apfel, please?” (“May I eat an apple,please?”).
The boys have been listening to the German stories more than to any English story we have ever read.
I don’t know quite why that is, maybe it is just because it is all very new, but, who knows, this experiment might help the boys find their first words,
but even if it doesn’t, I think it will be a really good thing for our family.
Have you ever attempted something similar?
I would love to hear from you!
Have a wonderful day!