Wot So Funee? This week I have invited @VaiChin, of Rambling Through Parenthood to write for Wot so Funee? She joins in regularly with both linguistic anecdotes of her bilingual family, and hilarious misunderstandings with her toddler. Here she tells us a top tip for getting children to love going to school: 

What’s in a name? Quite a lot, apparently. A rose by any other name may smell just as sweet. But the same is not true when it comes to the name of your toddler’s pre-school.

I don’t know how or why, but I never got round to telling J the name of his pre-school since he first started attending earlier this year. It was always just ‘school’. The child used to howl his lungs out and bawl his eyes out when I so much as mentioned it. “J not go school!” was the consistent response to all things school related.

If Butterflies is the name of your pre-school, use it to your advantage

Then one fine day, I had the thus far overlooked the good sense to mention the name of his pre-school to him. “Butterflies,” I said. The transformation was remarkable. His little eyes lit up, and an air of quiet calm descended around him.

No more Pre-School Butterflies!

J has since been ecstatic about going to school. I have had, “I love Butterflies school,” and “I like Butterflies school,” and “J goes to Butterflies!” We have even had a conversation about it.

Me: J, what is the name of your school?

J: Butterflies! The happiness very evident on his brightly lit face.

The change has been nothing short of miraculous. Butterflies now features regularly in a few of our rhymes as well.

“Hello everyone it’s good to see you here. Butterflies, butterflies, good to see you here!”

Which brings me to the subject of J and his favourite songs. The child has picked up the tunes to a vast majority of his favourites, but not necessarily all the words. So he just makes them up as he goes along. The result usually varies from the mildly amusing to the truly hilarious.

Bob the Builder can we fisk it!

Twinkle twinkle likkle star, how I wonder what you are,

Like a diamond in the star, twinkle twinkle little star.

Wincy wincey spider…

I could go on, but really, most times I have no idea what he is singing. The tunes are all familiar; the words belong to a language alien to grown-ups.

Like Aaji (Grandma) says when J skypes with her, ” I don’t know what he is saying, but it all sounds very sweet.”

And on that note, I say a huge big thank you to GG and the Bug for letting us share some more of J’s words of toddler wisdom, Jspeak, here in their space. Given that J speaks incessantly through all his waking hours (and sometimes sleeping too), there is no dearth of words in our world at the moment.

Until next time…

Doesn’t he sound like a total treasure?!

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