We have a few months left before applications have to be in for a place in September 2014 and Paul and I thought we had it all figured out. First choice, a small school in the village we’re moving to. Second choice, a small school in the neighbouring village. Third choice, a nice school a short drive away in the village where my parents’ live. Sorted!
But then my mum and dad threw a curveball in to the mix.
You see, CK is to all intents and purposes bilingual. He’s speaks English at home and German everywhere else. Having never lived anywhere else but Switzerland, he doesn’t know any different. In fact, a lot of the children he goes to nursery with are exposed to three or four languages on a daily basis.
But how do we maintain this exposure to a bilingual or multilingual lifestyle when we move back to Wales?
Well, the clue is in the country we’re moving to. Wales. Wales, a country with its own national language. Yes, it might not be the most widely spoken language. And no, it’s necessarily going to be career enhancing for him in the future unless he goes in to Welsh politics or covets being a soap actor on S4C’s Pobol y Cwn. But, it could keep the part of his brain that can already differentiate between languages and where and when to use them fully functioning. You know, children are like sponges, and all that.
So my parents suggested sending CK to a Welsh medium school just a few minutes drive from our new house and we’re now seriously considering that as an option. It does seem a little strange that when he’s still in the early learning stages with German and English to throw a third language in to the mix but maybe this is the ideal time. A time when he seems to be lapping up all the information he can get.
I realise that this is quite a peculiar situation but if you have any thoughts or advice, I’d love to hear from you. We still have a bit of time to decide and really want to do our best by CK. Could a Welsh school be the answer?