Wednesday, November 5, 2014

The Sophia Dialect

I realized something a few days ago. Out of the five members of our family, I think I might talk the least. Gracie held the place as the least talkative member of our family until sometime this year when she learned English. No I'm pretty sure it's me.

A man I had never seen before stopped me on the way to pick up Jojo from kindergarten yesterday. He said he saw me go a pick her up from school, and he always laughs when I come back with her because her mouth never stops moving.

My girls love to talk. They talk before, during, and after they think. They talk so quickly that their words seem to bottleneck in their throatstrying to come out and then there is a short silence as they minds rush to catch up. There is so much childish talking in my life, it is ridiculous. I have even repeatedly stood there and listened to my child repeat the same phrase over and over until they can think of something different to say, just because they like talking.

I don't think my situation is particularly unique but I do think it is linguistically interesting. When Chris is gone, I am the only one who really knows the English language in our home. The rest of the inhabitanst have,at best, the vocabulary of a six year old. I like to think I am a pretty good example of what normal English sounds like. But, since I  say only one word for every twenty-five words (at least) spoken in our home I feel like I am not the dominant English teacher here.

This was driven home to me when I took Jojo in to be tested for speech therapy. I felt she wasn't saying her R's and S's correctly. They told me she actually could say her R's and S's perfectly. They showed me examples of words that had  S's and R's in the same location with similar consonant pairings and sometimes Jojo would say the S or R and sometimes she wouldn't. It wasn't that she couldn't say them, It's that she just didn't believe some words had those sounds. I can't think of the words they showed me now but it is essentially like she would say "car" and "far" and she would say "cah" and "far."

Sophia can't say S's or R's very well, and I am pretty sure that Jojo is getting most of her vocab from Sophia. Basically, all my girls speak in English in a Sophia dialect. I wonder if this is amplified because Jojo hangs out in a little German world for her whole day except for church and our family.

I was going to include some of the incorrect phrasing that has become so standard in our house Chris and I have picked it up as well, but I think this post is done for now. I am going to go read.

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