Monday, February 21, 2011

French Homework

The Middlest's homework this weekend was to memorize a poem. I remember having to do this in elementary school too. And then again in high school with the preamble to the Declaration of Independence, Shakespeare's famous words for Caesar 'friends, Romans and countrymen' and Lincoln's 'four score and seven years ago'. It is good brain practice. And creates a sense of pride when you've got it. As witnessed this morning by my handsome boy.
Keep in mind this language leap has happened in less than a year. Amazing what our brains can do when we try something new. Proof that there's no need to worry over immersing children in a new language.
Here's les Deux Lapins a la Middlest:
And here's the poem if you're interested. 

Les Deux Lapins
En allant chercher mon pain, 
Je rencontre deux lapins. 
Je les mets dans mon panier, 
Ils se mettent a grignoter. 
Je les mets dans mon placard,
Ils me mangent tout mon lard. 
Je les mets au coin du feu, 
 Ils s'endorment tout les deux.

Two Rabbits (my translation, be kind)
When I was collecting my bread,
I came upon two rabbits.
I put them in my basket,
They eat all my snack.
I put them in my cupboard,
They eat all my bacon.
I put them in the corner by the fire,
They fall asleep together.


  1. Great accent! Isn't it incredible how easily kids pick up new languages! How long have you been in France? I'm really interested in how bilingual children cope with language. What a sweet boy you have

  2. Sarah Elizabeth,
    It is amazing to me how well the kids have done and how they have no american accent when they speak french. we've been here a year today actually. but the kids started school and learning french last may.
    i love your photos on your blog. your wedding dress was beautiful.
    aidan x

  3. Yay, he's so clever!! It's amazing, isn't it? He does that so well. I am also amazed at my kids' accents, I learn something every time I read with my 6yo. My daughter has a real southern accent, she must have had more southern teachers, whereas my son has a more Parisian accent. Cracks me up when she says sang-q for cinq. A French person will know exactly where she learnt the language!

  4. Kirsty,you're right, the accent thing is so obvious once you figure out the language a bit. Mine all have the southern their mommy's but mine is american southern.
    His teacher has a strong r roll which he's obviously picked up.
    a xo

  5. So impressed with the pronunciation of "grignoter". Do you speak French in the house? He is so sweet! Again I am available for babysitting ;)

  6. Oh my! That was amazing, his accent is so good! x

  7. Aidan, that's the sweetest thing ever! Why can't I do that?

  8. Just amazing how young children can pick the accent. I attended a talk on brain and the speaker said that before 11 you pick perfect accents when learning a language. He gave the example of Henry Kissinger who migrated in the US when he was a bit older than that and speaks with a heavy German accent, while his younger brother can speak American with no German accent.
    So, Delana, this is why you speak French with an accent, and why I speak English with an accent...

  9. Ah, well done and soooooo cute! I love it when our babies speak French, blows me away.


  10. That is a precious video to have! It seems like such hard work to learn French! He is completely adorable!!

  11. Brenna,
    I may take you up on that offer if you don't watch out! I wish you lived close enough.

    I'm jealous of the accent. esp when they correct mine constantly.

    I know! Again, me too.

    I've heard the same thing. Isn't it something to do with their brain neurons not being closes or something? I remember a class at university that talked about how babies are open to hearing all sounds so they can learn the language they're born into and then they lose it. Can't wait to hear the Baby when he starts.For now he says 'sit down' in French. flawless.

    I never would have believed it one year ago.

    Thanks for stopping by. And he is quite the handsome, adorable guy...I'm just sayin'.

    bisous a tout,

  12. He's beautiful, and precious, and recites to perfection! My daughter's busy with the poems too, only she's a tad older (10), so the performances go on a bit longer...Funny, now why didn't it ever occur to ME to record her voice??


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