My husband is driving me crazy with this. Every few weeks he will explode about this. My son does not speak Arabic…ya weelli…no more English TV, no more English books, no more English games. I want everything in Arabic.
I bought lots of Arabic books from Jordan, but you can read them so many times before we both get sick of them. The library does not carry Arabic kids books. I have bought sindibad, ifta7 ya simsim, bakar dvds, but you can watch them so many time. Sindibad is too violent and they talk in fosha(classic Arabic) Arabic, ifta7 ya simsim only hold their attention for few minutes and again it is in fosha , and Bakar is in Egyptian, the hard to understand accent. Even if we did have a satellite dish, there are hardly any kids shows on, and not a lot of things I would want a 5yo and a 2.5yo to watch.
And Arabic games on the computer?? Hahaha… there are none. I only found one thing that teaches kids Arabic, it cost $70, and my son was into it for a couple of weeks before he learned all the animal names, and the fruits and now he does not want it anymore. A lot of American and Canadian TV channels websites have kids games, like PBS kids, tree house, etc. But none of the Arabic channels websites have anything for kids. I wonder why! So it is not like I have all those Arabic resources and I’m keeping my kids away from them. But even if they did, it is all in fosha Arabic. I bought them few Arabic sounding toys, and they are all by the voice of a very sleepy old man. Not very catchy!
When I first came to Canada, all the kids my age would not speak to me in Arabic. We do not know how to speak Arabic they said. Well now so many years later all of them speak perfect Arabic. Their parents talked to them in Arabic most of the time, and eventually they got comfortable enough to speak it, as they got older. They always understood Arabic and could speak it if they tried even back then.
So now I have to watch every word that comes out of my mouth, no English, only Arabic. It is very hard, since it is easier to express myself in English. I cannot teach my 2.5yo the ABC because it is English. I do not know the alph ba’a ta’a and I could careless if my kids know it now. And when you have a son who has a speech delay due to the two-language thing, you want him to talk anything, English, Arabic I could careless!
My husband is always saying we have to go back to Jordan. It is the weekly whine. The kids will have to speak Arabic when we go there. So chill out my dear husband. Although everyone in Amman talked to our kids in English when we were there this past summer. Everyone wants to show off their English, so they all speak to kids in English. Which drove my husband off the wall. Even my mother in law; she only knows about five English words was talking to the boys in English sometimes. It was hard for them to comprehend the fact that although zozo would answer them in English, he understands everything in Arabic.