Friday, September 01, 2006

The great transition/translation...(cont.)

Tess has finished her second day of school. Colm didn't go today as the little ones got the day off. Beth and I are in amazement at the way both kids continue to carry on as if they were inside a magic bubble. But in Tess's case there were a couple of blips.

Both days she has come home complaining bitterly about ice cream. The first night we quizzed her about this...her version was that the teacher kept talking about ice cream but he never ever gave them any. It seemed outrageous on the face of it, I had to admit, but we let it pass.

Today when Beth and Colm went to pick her up, Tess repeated the same complaint. Beth decide to try to find out what was up with the ice cream and why Tess wasn't getting any ( I'm sure she was much more diplomatic than that).

The teacher, speaking in French of course, denied ever mentioning "la glace" (ice cream), and then he smiled and gently suggested that what Tess was hearing was "la classe" - something he indeed said many times each day. Case solved.

Imagnie poor Tess, her head on a swivel each time she thought she heard something like, "Bonjour glace!"(Hello ice cream!) "Ecoutez glace" (Listen! ice cream!) "Regardez, glace!" (Look! ice cream!) "Asseyez-vous glace/ Levez-vous glace" (Sit down/stand up ice cream!) She must have felt like Alice in Through the Looking Glass.

I was impressed with both the teacher and Tess. The former because he was able to sort it out, and Tess because she clearly is listening with interest to the French being spoken, especially when she thinks it might have something to do with dessert.

When we explained the difference between la glace and la classe to Tess, she seemed satisfied even if she was a tad bit disappointed.



Anonymous Missy said...

Tess is a girl after my own heart--how many times have I misheard something (in my native language), mistaking it for food? Hamburgers for hammered and cheesecake for two-step come to mind instantly! I love that she knows what ice cream is in French. On one hand, it seems so basic, but when you think about it, it's really amazing!

2:12 PM  
Blogger kc said...

I only wish that I was hearing something that made as much sense or inspired me to pay closer attention as "ice cream". Sometimes the words fly by faster than the speed of thought...oh, by the way, I edited this post after thinking about what I had case you are back in the neighborhood for another look.
a plus tard,

11:16 PM  

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