As the city I live in is fairly small and there aren´t any bilingual playgroups, my friends and I decided to set up our own with our bilingual bubbas.Seeing that there is only a few of us, we´ve decided to take it in turns holding it at each other´s houses and that we are going to meet every Saturday at 11am as due to work commitments etc, that is the only day that we can all get together at the same time.
At the moment there are only the six of us, 3 mums and 3 babies, although I did mention it to two other British friends who have babies but they haven´t shown much interest yet unfortunately!I suppose I could advertise but then we might be inundated with Spanish parents wanting to bring their children and really I just wanted to keep it only for native speakers and their children or in other words, proper bilingual children as it just wouldn´t be the same with parents who don´t speak English or don´t always speak to their children in English as then the majority language might start creeping in or worse our children could pick up grammatical mistakes or mispronunciation errors from the Spanish parents. Don´t get me wrong, I´m not trying to exclude people here and I have nothing against Spanish parents joining but I´m just concerned about what effect it could have on our children´s own language. In fact, one of my friends´ Spanish friend and her child may be joining us for awhile or until her second child is born (She´s due in October so not long!)We could do with a few more people though so the whole thing just doesn´t fizzle out.
The first "meeting" took place at my house and we sang Five Little Monkeys and did some actions to it which I think they enjoyed....unfortunately there is a bit of a gap between my daughter and Bilingual Bubba 1 to Bilingual Bubba 3, a difference of a year but anyway at least Bilingual Bubba 3 can listen and take it in subconsiously!I then read "Dear Zoo" to them and my daughter and Bilingual Bubba 1 enjoyed seeing the animals,making the animal noises and opening or lifting the flaps.We then let them have free play while we had a chat and refreshments!It was fun and seemed quite successful. Bilingual Bubba 1 calls my daughter Coco as she can´t pronounce Chloe yet and Chloe seems to have picked that up off her so I think it´s working although it´s still early doors so we´ll have to wait and see!
The following week Chloe was ill so we called it off and then the next week one of the Bilingual Bubbas couldn´t make it but we still went ahead with the playgroup with my daughter and Bilingual Bubba 3, otherwise the playgroup will definitely just die its death particularly if we keep cancelling it every time someone can´t make it!Anyway, I´ll be reporting on our activites and updating the progress of our bilingual playgroup from time to time and we´ll see how it all pans out! I´d love to hear from any of you who go to a bilingual playgroup and your experiences or if you set up your own bilingual playgroup!