Tuesday, February 19, 2008


People keep asking about English. Raia is not speaking English at all. It's funny, she speaks Russian to everyone and doesn't seem to notice that they don't understand. Maybe that is because she's younger? Or because she usually has a translator nearby and everyone guesses well? If she holds up her cup and says something in Russian, Baba "understands" and gets her a drink.

It's been fascinating to watch Jaan learn! The first few days he scared me a little, because he started a weird baby talk, and would hardly speak intelligibly at all. Then, all of a sudden, he started speaking English. It's still rough, but he can definitely communicate. Now there's a constant stream of "Dis vhat is?" and "Dat vhat do?" and "Vhere you go?" (or, more often, "Tyotya Leetra vhere go?"). And of course, there's always "Vhy?"

The funniest story, which I've been telling everyone, is from last week. Jaan was playing in the backyard, and Mom was hanging laundry out there. He yelled, "Baba. Come! Dis is vhat?" She went over and saw that his hands were covered in ants! Don't worry, he didn't get bitten.

"Go to the ant"
Originally uploaded by fylliska.


Anonymous said...

That's too funny about English and Russian. We teach our little girl to be bilingual (we speak more English of course since we live here) and though she can't speak any of the languages yet (she is only 14 months), she surely understands both of them. We read to her both English and Russian baby books. You just have to start a book and she knows exactly what book to bring to you. It's so exciting to see it. Ты случайно не знаешь, VeggieTales на русский переведены? У меня племянница в России. Очень хочу ей эти мультики подарить. :-)


Marsha said...

Too cute!
So will Raia be learning English through this as well?

Phyllis said...

Да, Veggie Tales есть, но трудно найти. Мы оставили наши там. :-(

Marsha, I think it's up to her how much she'll learn right now. So far she doesn't want to. Jaan was like that when he was littler too, though. They seem to do best when we don't push them on languages.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone recommend some baby books in Russian and how a monolingual English speaker might find them? I have a friend who lives in the US but speaks Russian and would like to speak it to her baby so I thought it would be nice to give her some baby books in the language.