Thursday, 25 April 2013

Non-Native Treasure Trove: Everything there is to know about the summer

I've just ordered a new book and am super excited!

It's called Tout sur l'été and, if I'm totally honest, it's more of a purchase for me than it is for les enfants!

In a bid to keep up with Poppette's knowledge thirsty mind and French language needs, I'm trying everything I can to increase my own vocabulary so I don't get caught on the hop quite so often.

This book sounds like the perfect antidote to that all too common brain freeze.

Détails sur le produit

It looks at pretty much everything you can think of that relates to the summer season split into three sections :- animal life, nature and daily life.

It explains scientific stuff (using a little character called Loupiote who shares his knowledge comic strip style) e.g. Why is the weather warm in summer? What causes thunder storms? Why do stars shine in the night sky? Why is it important to protect bees?

It also covers topics such flowers, insects, fruits and vegetables, all from the angle of what happens to them in the summer months. What's it like up a mountain in the summer months? Or by the sea? Why do cows produce more milk in summer?

There are also poems, rhymes, recipes and activities for the children to get involved in to help with their discovery.

A serious gem of a find.

The icing on the cake is that this book forms a part of a series. Yep... guess who'll be coughing up for a copy of Tout sur l'automne and Tout sur le printemps when the seasons begin to change!

I'll let you know whether it lives up to the hype and to my expectations when it arrives!

Now all I have to do is find time to read it. Oh Lordy.

UPDATE : 2nd May 2013

My book arrived a couple of days ago and I'm not disappointed! It's everything I had hoped for.

Here's a few photos of what you can expect to find inside:

Friday, 19 April 2013

The Subjunctive and Other Delights

Poppette is now 30 months old and her grammar skills in both English and French are developing a pace. Each day she uses words and sentence structures that I have not heard her use before. Watching her learn to express her inner thoughts really is a marvel.

The subjunctive just keeps popping out of her mouth ...Yes! The subjunctive... so many French language students grapple with that throughout their studies..... and my two year old can use it correctly because learning a language from birth is clearly a fabulous way to learn.

Like many toddlers, Poppette is a real creature of habit and creates routines left right and centre. Her new rule is that, at bed time, she can’t go to sleep unless Maman or Papa lay beside her bed, on her flower mat, under a blanket and go to sleep too! I am determined to break this routine.... as it's starting to take longer and longer for her to actually go to sleep as distracted as she is by the novelty of having a roommate!

Last night, I laid down obediently and waited for her to drop off but she was shifting around and around for what seemed like forever.... So, I piped up "Tu fais quoi, ma princesse?" [what are you doing, my princess]. To which Poppette immediately retorted..."Chut Maman, il faut qu'on dorme. [Ne] parle pas!" [Shhh mummy, we've got to go to sleep. Don't talk!"]. A perfect little subjunctive! Of course I was so damned excited about the French grammar bit that I promptly forgot about the fact that it was 10pm, I was starving and essentially barricaded in my two year old's bedroom!

Little Man (12 months) is showing continued signs of understanding and has added a new word to his list "more". He hasn't said anything in French yet (apart from doudou, which he has now been saying for a couple of days). I live in hope that more French words will follow. I need more time with him. I feel like he hears so little French compared to the intensive English environment they provide him with at nursery.