Children learning to be Bi-Lingual

Hello or bonjour 2We are an English family living in France.  Our children are being brought up to be bi-lingual.  They speak French exclusively at school and speak English exclusively at home.  Is it difficult?  Not really!

It’s amazing how adaptable children are and how quickly they learn to cope with switching from one language to the other.  We’ve never made a big deal about it and neither have they. James found his own way of asking whether he should be speaking French or English when he used to ask “Mummy, do they say hello or bonjour?”.


When we first moved to France with our children in 2004, we did consider whether it might be better to try to speak French at home to help the children adapt at school, but to be honest, our French really wasn’t good enough and I think it would have been more of a hindrance than a help.

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French Children Don’t Talk Back!

Luc cheekyI’ve been thinking a lot recently about the behavior of French children compared to British. It’s apparent when living here that French children are better behaved. They are generally more obedient, polite and respectful than the British youth. I’ve often marveled when seeing groups of young children out on a school trip. They all line up neatly, do as they’re told and often have far fewer adults supervising them than they would in the UK. I’ve been wondering why this is and examining my own parenting skills to see what we can learn from the French.

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A little bit of background

McArthur 2012In the UK I was a mother of three and an IT Trainer, my husband Gary was a Lecturer in Horticulture and between us we ran a Guest House on the Kent Coast.

We moved to France in 2004 and now I’m a mother of five, we have several different businesses and we live in a large watermill, which we will be renovating for the rest of our lives.

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Posted in Business in France, Education in France, Life in France | 1 Comment