Fluent Like a Kid

I Am Fluent In Three Languages ...item 1.. For...

Here it is, the leaked post title that came out way to early.  I finally have written what I was thinking about the subject.  I was half tempted not to write anything, I actually got a lot of views to my site and even a comment with that little title.  It seems it may some think, which is what I would hope it would do.

Ultimately I decided to put my thoughts down.  I’m a bit to arrogant not to let my own thoughts come out on the subject.  I do, however, encourage discussion and would like to hear how I am wrong.  My feelings don’t get hurt I promise.  Anyway, enough stalling:

So what do you mean, “Fluent like a kid?”

This may be a different meaning than some would think, but this comes from the perspective of a parent who has been a part of raising 4 wonderful children.  Specifically I want to talk about an observation I made while talking with my 5-year-old daughter.

My 5-year-old daughter (6 in January) loves to talk to her parents.  She tells us things and some times she tells on her brother and sisters.  She is a jiber jaber and I love it.  Now judging her just on her linguistic skills, she doesn’t always pronounce things right and sometimes she uses incorrect grammar.  Other times, she will get caught not knowing how to phrase what she wants to say correctly, and will pause while she figures it out.

Despite all that, it is of no doubt that she is “Fluent” in English.  We can have a regular conversation, sometimes very LONG conversations, and I enjoy every minute of them.  Is this the end of her learning English? No, of course not. The way she speaks will continue improve and the subjects she is comfortable talking about will develop beyond Barbies and Kindergarten to more advanced subjects.  Yet despite her imperfect English, but there is no way anyone could or would say that she is less than fluent.

What does that mean for you?

There is this moving target of “fluency” and what it is and what isn’t.  And it really depends on your perspective.  I feel that striving for fluency is not a bad thing as long as you don’t let it take control of your self-worth.  Look at me.  I am not yet a master of all things Spanish, nor Thai or English for that matter, but I can say that I do have a level of fluency in all those languages.  Next time you are down on yourself about fluency, just tell yourself that you already are fluent, fluent like a kid.



Filed under Motivation, Parenting

2 responses to “Fluent Like a Kid

  1. Yedian

    The prescription appears to be spend five years in a total immersion environment. I wish I had that luxury. P.S. It looks like the box which reads “The Day I start a new language’ is off by a year.

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