Despite Buddy’s reluctance to join in our Flash Sticks Spanish challenge, I was serenaded by him from the back seat on the way to swimming this evening. Okay, maybe it was more of a chant, but it was certainly, “El bebe! El bebe! El bebe!”
A spot-check revealed Mimi remembers lots more vocab – as do I – so we’re definitely making progress, despite only really reviewing the Flash Sticks over breakfast or dinner (and certainly not consistently).
For me the colour coding has worked brilliantly. Despite doing five years of French and two years of Spanish I was always confused about words that had sexes – beyond the obvious.
So we’re making slow but steady progress. Buddy has asked to choose the next set of words (we do about 3 or 4 at a time) and they’ve even used the Flash Sticks to support their quest for a pet. (I’ll always remember the word for dog is el perro – and no, I didn’t look it up).
I’m going to try to speed up the learning by sticking some of the Flash Sticks to the relevant objects to see how far we can get. It will drive Husband crazy (he’s a bit of a neat freak) but I reckon the theory of seeing the words every days, lots of times, in connection with the actual object will be an effective way to learn.
The three of us (not Husband) so already know some basic Spanish (my name is… hi, bye etc) but last year Mimi and I also learned the Spanish to explain her nut allergy. We were going to Mexico to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary and I wanted to be certain the staff could understand the risks for her. To her credit, Mimi also wanted to explain and got her first chance at Customs when we had to tick a bios on the form declaring we were bringing in pharmaceuticals. It’s fair to say the policeman was suitably impressed at the seven year old fluently explaining her allergy, he smiled and waved us through.
A little more weird was using my Spanish to explain her allergy in a Mexican restaurant in Covent Garden last week. I had tried in English but the waitress didn’t understand so I asked if she spoke Spanish. No, she said, but I’ll get my colleague. When the new waiter arrived I explained in Spanish and listened a little to his response before admitting I only understood parts of it (he said they didn’t really use nuts). You could have explained in English he said (!) before complementing my Spanish and asking where I learned.
Now, if only I could be that fluent all the time… We’ll keep trying.