About being a trilingual kid in Thailand

Everybody is telling you kids are like sponges, they pick up everything you throw at them, and it includes languages. They become multilingual without even trying to be.

Well, in theory, this is true, they are able to communicate in another language pretty quickly, but that does not really make them multilingual, that makes them able to communicate. Being a fluent multilingual kid is not a walk in the park, it also requires a lot of efforts for them to achieve it.

Case in point, our son in Thailand. As mentioned before, he is attending school at the Lycée Français of Bangkok, where, as the name indicates, the education is in french (and also English in the bilingual classes). But when back home, he mainly speaks Thai with his Mom and everybody he meets home, no french except with his father in the evening. And it is for a relatively short time considering his parents speak in English together.

So here is the situation, he speaks Thai with his Mom, speaks french with his dad and in school, and listens to his parents speaking English. It sure makes mastering any of the languages tough, how can you pick up lot of vocabulary in any of the languages when you need to pick it up in three languages at the same time?

And now, let’s talk about an even more difficult part, the writing, and since he is at the French School, the writing in french. That sure gives him lot of headaches 😀

When you do not have as much vocabulary as your French peers, that makes writing even more complicated than it already is for anybody speaking french,  there are lot of words you never heard before, but you have to write them just the same.

And what are all these crazy rules that they have in french? A bottle is a female word, a glass is a male word, who invented that? Can you explain dad? No, unfortunately.

And I’m not even talking about the grammar, and the tenses for the verbs, things that do not really exist in Thai and make him pretty confused.

But let’s be optimistic and he is also, he’ll make it eventually, everybody does.

All the pictures have been taken with the Canon 6D and the Canon lens 50mm f1.4.