Jours d'école*

Emmeline's first day of kindergarten. It would have been completely anti-climactic, as she spent a year in Catholic pre-K last year and we had planned to send her back. But we got a call over the summer, saying that there was an opening at one of the charter language immersion schools, and after much agonizing over the decision, we decided to enroll her there.

I was worried that it would be difficult for her, as she really loved her other school. But my daughter has proven once again to be amazingly adaptable and has finished her first week with no problems. She seems to have already become completely comfortable in the new school, which is a big relief.

I'm amazed at her ability--at any young child's ability--to learn a new language so quickly and wish I'd had the opportunity to do so when I was a kid. She already knows the French words for the primary colors, as well as for man, woman, boy and girl. So basically, her French vocabulary is already larger than mine.

I still don't have a clue as to how this whole language immersion thing will work in the long run. I mean, how do I help her learn how to read when I can't read the language myself? (I know, I know--I just focus on the reading in English part.) But still, it will be very strange to not be able to help her pronounce a word correctly, as I long ago realized that I'm incapable of speaking French properly. Spanish I can do. There's just something about French that is impossible for me--ask my French-Swiss co-worker or my Belgian boss. (Although it did become much easier for me to even attempt to pronounce a French word when my Francophile co-worker pointed out to me the biggest differences between English and French--English is primarily pronounced with the tip of the tongue and the front of the mouth, while French is primarily pronounced with the back of the tongue and the mouth. I don't know why that had never occured to me before.)

Anyway, I'm already dreading Emmeline's teenage years, when she will be capable of calling me horrible things, and/or discussing her plans to get a belly ring and tongue piercing, and/or making plans to sneak out of the house, all directly in front of me, as I will have no idea of what she's saying.

But I'm glad she's happy, and I'm glad that she has this opportunity.

Vive le France!

*Thank you, Google translator!


bayoucreole said...

She's adorable! I have a friend of mine whose daughter has been at that school for quite some time now. You're right, kids are like sponges. She'll have it down pat before you know it!

Anonymous said...

Emmeline is adorable and it sounds like you certainly made the right decision for her education. Good Luck to all of you the rest of this school year! Kathy in Des Moines