Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby aokoye » Sat Dec 17, 2016 4:13 pm

Cavesa wrote:While I admire a lot of things about your learning, I am not sure whether it is a good idea to try to raise a bilingual child, while none of the parents speaks the language really well. It is not the first time I see such attempts. While it is awesome she can understand French from the shows, perhaps she shouldn't learn too much from her parents. But perhaps there are French schools and preschools in your area?

I'm in full agreement with this. I think putting the kiddo(s) in a French school would be a better idea for a number of reasons (of course it's also like an exceedingly expensive idea unless their are public french immersion schools in the area).
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby rdearman » Sat Dec 17, 2016 4:21 pm

aokoye wrote:
Cavesa wrote:While I admire a lot of things about your learning, I am not sure whether it is a good idea to try to raise a bilingual child, while none of the parents speaks the language really well. It is not the first time I see such attempts. While it is awesome she can understand French from the shows, perhaps she shouldn't learn too much from her parents. But perhaps there are French schools and preschools in your area?

I'm in full agreement with this. I think putting the kiddo(s) in a French school would be a better idea for a number of reasons (of course it's also like an exceedingly expensive idea unless their are public french immersion schools in the area).

I remember reading something about this type of thing awhile back. Experts were recommending to Chinese parents who had immigrated to the USA, to only speak Mandarin to their children because they wouldn't then pass on bad English pronunciation or habits to their children. The children would have two sets of language speakers, Native English and Native Mandarin, not a mixture of Native English, and non-Native English. Can't find the study or article now though. :(
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Sat Dec 17, 2016 5:43 pm

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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby Finny » Sat Dec 17, 2016 7:11 pm

I'm going to go a bit against the grain on the multilingual parenting thing since this is kind of my wheelhouse. The experts do suggest sticking with the native language for non-native speakers over the non-native language. I also recommend that to parents at work on a rather frequent basis. However, I don't recommend that because I don't think my Mexican parents will teach their kids bad English; I recommend it because it's a lot easier to grow up in the US as a monolingual English speaker than it is to grow up as a monolingual Spanish one. The parents typically speak English because they want their kids to learn English. However, in doing so, they put their kids at risk of forgetting (or never learning to begin with) Spanish. If children are raised in the public schools in the US, I don't think any English at home, no matter how poorly accented or spoken, will keep them from learning fluent, native English in the long term. However, every minute that's not spent in a minority language will reduce the odds of that language (or languages) being learned. This, for me, is the relevant reason for non-English-native parents to avoid speaking English at home in an English-dominant country.

As a result, I think the math is completely different if you're trying to teach a minority language (in this case, French in Australia). I don't think speaking French--whether poorly or well--will put PM's kids at a disadvantage in learning English in the long or short term. Yes, technically, they'll have less exposure to English than kids being raised purely monolingually. In the long term, that doesn't matter; the studies typically recommend 20-30% of waking time in a language to be able to use it actively. The studies also say bilingually-raised kids eventually surpass monolingual speakers in overall language performance. As long as his kids either a.) attend an English-speaking school system, whether out or inside the home or b.) have at least one parent consistently speaking English, they're going to learn English in Australia, and they're going to learn it well. So we can put the fears of PM's kids developing bad English to rest, I hope.

The relevant question is whether or not his kids will be somehow damaged in their abilities to learn French due to being exposed to French. I think the answer here is no. If he's making lots of grammar mistakes when speaking and the kids don't have the opportunity to hear correct grammar, whether through books, aural media, or other speakers, then yes, they'll likely pick up those errors. They can unlearn them later with enough input. This also goes with accent development, although that's harder to correct after puberty. But to summarize things, the kids are going to be monolingual English speakers by default. The extent to which they receive input in French will determine their passive and potentially active command of French. Would an immersion school or au pair be better than a sub-C1 speaker? Sure. But the only way what PM is doing could possibly become a negative would be if he kept his kids from Australian society and the English language and only allowed them to hear him speaking poor French. And I don't think that's what he's doing.

In my personal situation, by the way, I'm raising the kids trilingually. English is our native language and we're in the US (so as with Australia, the language is a given). Wife speaks to the kids purely in English. I speak to the kids in a mixture of C1 Spanish and perhaps B1 French. The kids understand all 3 languages fluently, and my near-3-year-old speaks English and Spanish and pops out a few phrases in French here and there. My toddler has a few words in each language. Worst case scenario long term, the kids grow up fluently bilingually with trilingual understanding; best case scenario, they speak all 3. Given that there's already a guaranteed native language, the worst thing you can do is not try for more out of a fear of doing more harm than good.
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby aokoye » Sat Dec 17, 2016 7:38 pm

I don't think the kids' English will be damaged at all. It's their French that I worry about.
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby PeterMollenburg » Sat Dec 17, 2016 9:11 pm

Cavesa wrote:While I admire a lot of things about your learning, I am not sure whether it is a good idea to try to raise a bilingual child, while none of the parents speaks the language really well. It is not the first time I see such attempts. While it is awesome she can understand French from the shows, perhaps she shouldn't learn too much from her parents. But perhaps there are French schools and preschools in your area?


Although your concern comes from a good place, nothing will change here. I appreciate all suggestions made by yourself and others as well. My mind is already made up, my daughter is getting much value out of this, and I'm not stupid- I know the risks. My French accent is by no means, "Australianised", and I'm careful with grammar- what gaps remain (idioms etc) will fill out in time with planned time abroad (this will be very considerable- my family and I intend on spending a lot of time in francophone regions and aim to own property there) and continual improvement of my language (expanding vocab for ex.).

Your comments for me personally are akin to those types of comments we hate others saying to us when we tell them we're learning a language such as French. I'm not being egocentric here, just telling you how it is. I want to reiterate that I believe your comments come from a good place, and although initially disappointing, they make me all the more determined to push on, both with my French, and with my daughter's.

Edit (additional paragraph):
Nothing that comes out of my mouth hasn't been studied in grammar exercises, looked up, phonetics verified, read and heard several times before, before using the language with my daughter. The only risks she runs at this stage is insufficient exposure to a broader range of vocabulary, expressions/idioms and uncommon verb forms. Thus, if anything I believe she's getting a "head start" in French. I had French teachers in high school, and German for that matter. They weren't native. No-one complained (that I know of). Doesn't make it 'right', but it's not unheard of. And I feel the way I 'teach' is much more natural- through interaction via conversations, play, reading and media. So much French media is used in conjunction with my language. If I sound "un-native", she will learn to discern it, particularly as we spend more time in Europe. A careful head start will help her transition.
(end edit)

I have looked into French schools etc. They are not practical at this stage (distance predominantly), but worth reconsidering as situations and attitudes may evolve. I'd like to add I am generally not keen on foreigners teaching children non-native languages for the exact reasons concern has been raised here, so I do get your concern, but I'd like to think I'm relatively unique. And if not, then sufficient time among natives in the near future ought to iron out a few creases, because imo that's all they will be. I am the first person who will be honest and upfront that you were right, if in ten years I am witness to my daughter's struggles with French because of disparities between my French and native French.
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby aokoye » Sat Dec 17, 2016 11:17 pm

I wasn't meaning to be dismissive though I can see how my comments may have been taken as such. While I don't think you need to be a native speaker in X language to teach it to anyone (your own children included) you do need to have a very high level of proficiency. I suspect you'll get there quickly though given that's one of the main points of this thread :D . I didn't catch how old your daughter was but one of the reasons why I suggested immersion programs is because it's really easy for kids to refuse to speak their home language (in your daughter's case that'd be French) if it isn't the language that they are surrounded by in school or in the rest of the world. I have known a number of people who totally forgot their native language because they refused to speak it once they entered school in favor of English. I had a German teacher in high school whose older son, despite going to a German immersion school and having a father who only spoke to him in German, refused to speak German at home. I doubt this played much of a role in his proficiency given that his school days were nearly 100% in German, but I remember the being somewhat amused when I found this out when I was 14 years old.

Meanwhile I also know a German professor (who again, isn't a native speaker) who will only speak to her children in German (they go/went to the same school as the high school teacher's child went to) and her children's German is effectively their L1 along with English.

Given that you are intending on buying property in France I suspect, in the end, your daughter's French will be just fine.
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby Ani » Sun Dec 18, 2016 1:12 am

aokoye wrote:I don't think the kids' English will be damaged at all. It's their French that I worry about.


I have been speaking only French to my toddler. Yep, he might become a teen with awful French, or in 12 years of study we both might speak beautifully. The other option is that my kids know 0 other foreign languages. It's super easy for non-parents and and parents with lovely options like "language of choice immersion school" (and a child whose education style fits that school) to suggest better ways of raising children, but it is far enough divorced from reality to be a joke. Maybe I'll just hire an au pair. Maybe a personal chef while I am at it. Maybe I'll find that mythical f'in immersion play group and my child will be welcomed with open arms among all the native speaking children without me having to teach them a word in my faulty French.
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby PeterMollenburg » Sun Dec 18, 2016 1:14 am

aokoye wrote:I wasn't meaning to be dismissive though I can see how my comments may have been taken as such. While I don't think you need to be a native speaker in X language to teach it to anyone (your own children included) you do need to have a very high level of proficiency. I suspect you'll get there quickly though given that's one of the main points of this thread :D . I didn't catch how old your daughter was but one of the reasons why I suggested immersion programs is because it's really easy for kids to refuse to speak their home language (in your daughter's case that'd be French) if it isn't the language that they are surrounded by in school or in the rest of the world. I have known a number of people who totally forgot their native language because they refused to speak it once they entered school in favor of English. I had a German teacher in high school whose older son, despite going to a German immersion school and having a father who only spoke to him in German, refused to speak German at home. I doubt this played much of a role in his proficiency given that his school days were nearly 100% in German, but I remember the being somewhat amused when I found this out when I was 14 years old.

Meanwhile I also know a German professor (who again, isn't a native speaker) who will only speak to her children in German (they go/went to the same school as the high school teacher's child went to) and her children's German is effectively their L1 along with English.

Given that you are intending on buying property in France I suspect, in the end, your daughter's French will be just fine.


Yes I have definitely heard of stories, first hand in some cases, of children raised in one language entirely (both parents, grandparents) living in a society in which another language dominates. As soon as they went to school using the dominate language, their 'home language' disappeared. I've kept this kind of thing deliberately in the forefront of my mind and thus it is why I find it very important (as does my wife) that we aim to do a full year overseas in the near future and send our daughter to some kind of education/play group/kindergarten in which French becomes of utmost importance.

In the background of all this, we have looked into French schools/preschools etc. Currently they are not practical for us, but our situation is always evolving.

I appreciate your post quoted above aokoye. I understand you didn't mean anything blatantly negative and understand where you are coming from. I understand where all comments of such nature are coming from, but I don't always agree with all elements and it does make me somewhat defensive, but not so much that I can't understand you're providing me with insight, reflection, warranted concern and merely wanting to reflect to assist me.
Thank you. And I honestly mean this in the sincerest of ways. I'm also not being dissimissive. Everyone has been incredibly helpful here throughout this thread, but with some of my feelings towards the recent comments regarding me/my daughter and speaking to her in French, it's really only making me more determined to succeed. Your above comments are indeed helpful and not at all sinister btw.
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Re: Time from B2 to C1/C2? (frustrated somewhat- seeking some feedback pls)

Postby PeterMollenburg » Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:13 am

Here are my results for the DLI's ODA. I had many interruptions so ignore the time. Also I seriously rushed the last bit and am still in a made rush posting this. Still I think the results are accurate as I took more time than necessary in the earlier sections and nowhere near enough time in the later sections being in a rush I gave quite a few things one listen only (as opposed to two) and rushed answers not caring if they were right or not, but did take a LOT of time earlier, so i think it balances out.
-----------------------------------------------------------
Listening Assessment
Language: French
Date of the Diagnostic Session: 12/17/2016
Time Spent for the Session: 161 Minutes
Name: **** *****
Based on your performance in this ODA session, your ILR proficiency level estimate is 2 (Current Level).
Your goal is to work toward proficiency level 2+ (Target Level).
Note: The primary purpose of ODA is to provide you with formative feedback - feedback to help you in the learning process. The ILR level estimate you are given here is intended to function as a reference for charting your progress toward higher proficiency. You may or may not receive the same level at an official test.
The goal is to work incrementally toward your target proficiency level, by learning more about the content areas and the lexical, syntactical, and discourse aspects that you have not yet mastered. The following is a detailed diagnostic feedback on your performance.

Content Questions*
Current Level
0 100

88.89%
Target Level
0 100

38.89%
unsatisfactory satisfactory excellent

Linguistic Questions**
Current Level
0 100

81.82%
Target Level
0 100

75.76%
*Content Questions are all the questions about the meaning of a text, events, details, ideas and arguments.
**Linguistic Questions are those about key vocabulary, sentence structure and relations between ideas.

1 Performance Report - Current Level 2:

Content Questions
Correct / Total
Main Ideas
3/3
(100%)
understand speech about common topics, well-known current events and everyday descriptions and narrations

Supporting Ideas
5/6
(83.3%)
understand factual content

understand important factual details


Linguistic Questions
Vocabulary
15/21
(71.4%)
understand everyday topics, common personal accounts, or well-known current events


Subject Area Breakdown
Society: social issues (e.g. poverty, crime...)

6/7
Science: discoveries, inventions and research

6/7
Politics: government systems (e.g. structure, administration, state, local, political parties, elections)

3/7
Structure
3/3
(100%)
understand narrations about current, past and future events

understand basic grammar relations within utterances


Structural Feature Breakdown
identify the relationship between subjects and verbs within complex utterances. for example: la marmotte, placée en sentinelle sur le promontoire, sifflera au moindre danger pour donner l’alarme à toute la colonie.

2/2
comprehend the way the conditional mood is used to indicate a condition that has not yet happened. for example: d'ici 2015, le paludisme devrait être éliminé dans tous les pays de la région européenne.

1/1
Discourse
3/3
(100%)
understand basic elements of cohesion (e.g., pronouns, verb inflections)


Discourse Feature Breakdown
recognize how a common cohesive device of conclusion such as [donc] functions within and across complex utterances. for example: tout le monde en parle ça doit donc être génial!

1/1
comprehend how some conjunctions of contrast such as [en revanche] function to contrast two ideas within a complex utterance.

1/1
identify what pronouns are replacing across complex utterances. for example: bob n’est pas mal habillé et ses cheveux sont toujours bien coiffés.

1/1

Speech Processing***
Delivery
Original Version Modified Version
Correct / Total Correct /Attempts
understand speech delivered at a normal rate

8/9
0/0
Vocabulary
Audio Forms Transcribed Forms
Correct / Total Correct / Attempts
understand vocabulary items in their audio forms or with transcription

15/21
0/0

***This section addresses factors that can affect the comprehension of authentic speech, such as speed, clarity, or accent. Depending on the level of the passage, it may also assess the extent to which you needed modified speech (vs. authentic speech) or transcribed vocabulary.
The information under "Modified Version" and "Transcribed Forms" in this section reports on your need for listening help. The information in this column is only applicable if you required modified speech (vs. authentic speech) or transcribed vocabulary.

2 Performance Report - Target Level 2+:

Content Questions
Correct / Total
Main Ideas
3/6
(50%)
understand most common factual topics

Supporting Ideas
4/12
(33.3%)
understand some discussions on specialized topics

understand some implied meaning


Linguistic Questions
Vocabulary
28/42
(66.7%)
understand general vocabulary with occasional limitations


Subject Area Breakdown
Security: security issues (e.g. terrorism, trafficking)

2/7
Economy: energy

12/14
Environment: environmental issues (e.g. protection and conservation)

4/7
Science: communication and space

4/7
Culture: history (events and people)

6/7
Structure
5/6
(83.3%)
understand some long and complex utterances


Structural Feature Breakdown
identify the relation between a subject and a verb in some complex utterances with multiple embeddings. for example: il ne s’agissait pas de la rébellion d’une élite politique mécontente, mais de toute la population.

2/2
recognize some key words that trigger the use of the subjunctive when expressing wants, wishes, hopes, and desires in some complex utterances with multiple embeddings. for examples: il faut qu’elle soit là demain soir. je veux que tu le fasses.

0/1
identify the relation between an object and a verb in some complex utterances with multiple embeddings. for example: vous voyez, je vous ai empêché d’être un criminel.

1/1
recognize verbs used to indicate future action in some complex utterances with multiple embeddings. for example: je suis sûr qu’un jour ils seront indépendants.

1/1
comprehend the way the conditional mood is used to indicate a hypothetical or potential action in complex utterances with multiple embeddings. for example: je suis contre ce musée qui enfermerait l'histoire.

1/1
Discourse
6/6
(100%)
understand some complex relations between utterances: connections and references


Discourse Feature Breakdown
identify what pronouns are replacing across distant complex utterances. for example: une entreprise moderne ne peut se passer, aujourd’hui, d’outils tels que les enquêtes de satisfaction de ses employés.

3/3
understand the use of some complex conjunctions such as [alors que], [afin que], and [ainsi que] in complex utterances with multiple embeddings.

3/3

Speech Processing
Delivery
Original Version Modified Version
Correct / Total Correct /Attempts
understand speech delivered at a normal rate

7/18
0/0
Vocabulary
Audio Forms Transcribed Forms
Correct / Total Correct / Attempts
understand vocabulary items in their audio forms or with transcription

28/42
0/0
Last edited by PeterMollenburg on Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:32 am, edited 2 times in total.
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