Gransnet forums

Education

Granny advice needed

(65 Posts)
GagaJo Mon 25-Jan-21 11:51:40

I am considering bringing my daughter and grandson to Switzerland to live with me. Although there is covid here, it isn't anywhere near as bad as it is in the UK. Living here for a couple of years could be a way to improve his and his mum's lives. I don't think they would stay long term, but for a year or two, until hopefully, the whole covid mess dies down a bit. There are lots of complexities to the issue but the one that worries me the most is my grandson.

He is almost 3 and is really starting to talk a lot now, BUT his speaking is quite delayed. As an English teacher I know that late speaking often means literacy issues.

I am concerned that putting him into a non English speaking environment would drastically affect his language acquisition.

Do any of you have any insight or opinions about this? There ARE other issues with them moving, but this is the one that worries me the most.

Daddima Mon 25-Jan-21 11:57:23

Has your daughter asked to come to you?

I’d think that almost 3 is a bit early to be worrying about language acquisition, especially as he is starting to talk a lot, and I’m not sure of a direct link between late speech and literacy.
This could be an ideal time for him to learn a second language.

Namsnanny Mon 25-Jan-21 12:03:33

Children who grow up in bi lingual families usually cope better with language skills.
It's usually a positive for the child.

Oopsadaisy1 Mon 25-Jan-21 12:07:48

It sounds a lovely idea, I’m sure they would enjoy it and having a second language (for both of them?) would be a bonus, the Covid issue is also worrying over here and who knows how long that will take to sort.
I’m sure your Grandson would benefit by having the ones he loves around him all the time.

Humbertbear Mon 25-Jan-21 12:08:32

If you are worried about language acquisition you should suggest your daughter has his hearing tested. Young children soak up language. The children next door to us were not he most academic but spoke English, Greek, and Italian because they heard three languages at home.

MawBe Mon 25-Jan-21 12:14:56

Unless I am mistaken this occurred to you, maybe last year? At the time I think you said the school would only provide you with your own accommodation and I imagine renting for the three of you could be expensive.Hopefully this has been resolved then.
As for early years language learning this is, absolutely the best time. I spoke German as well as English up to my school years and it provided a foundation for my future language studies.
DH and his siblings all went to French speaking schools until Secondary, as their parents lived all over Europe, FIL being in the F.O. Again they grew up bilingual- a huge advantage.
Good friends from university ( Czech and half-Polish) had their twins in Paris where the father worked for four years before being moved to S Korea. . The boys grew up speaking English , French, Czech, Polish and their own “twin “ language!
I suppose the bottom line is does your D want to give it a try and how would it fit in with her own career.

maddyone Mon 25-Jan-21 12:23:02

Brilliant idea Gaga so long as your daughter agrees. Once she arrives, none of you would have to travel by plane very much. How would it work financially? Has your daughter got an income? Or can you afford to support all three of you? I’m not being nosy, just wondering as I don’t think your daughter works at present. Will nursery and school be free in Switzerland? Your little grandson will certainly benefit by being in nursery education at nearly three years old.
This is what Covid is doing to our children. Gaga’s grandson would certainly have been in nursery prior to Covid and unless there is a problem with his hearing, his speech would have progressed in nursery. I speak as an ex Early Years teacher.

LovelyCuppa Mon 25-Jan-21 12:26:20

Purely anecdotal, but my niece had very delayed speech, now doesn't shut up (!), and has no literacy issues.

As a teacher you'll know every child is different, but it doesn't necessarily mean doom and gloom!

Toadinthehole Mon 25-Jan-21 12:31:21

My son spoke really early, at 13 months. His brother seemed to start at the same time....about 2 and a quarter. My younger son developed speech problems around school age, and had some therapy. At the time, they told me children who talk early can often develop problems later on. He was fine after a few sessions, and learnt to read.
I think it sounds like a great idea...especially as your grandson could become bi lingual. However, only you really know how this would pan out in reality. Do you all get on? Could your daughter work? Would she want to? Are the nurseries good? Would she want to go?That sort of thing.
In principle though, it sounds like a wonderful opportunity for you all. Good luck in your decision making 🤗

Ellianne Mon 25-Jan-21 12:37:48

What a wonderful experience it would be for them! Life's too short to hang about, seize the opportunity, what's the worst? Your daughter will naturally want to do a lot of research, but if you already have things in place for when they arrive that's a plus. Is her job temporarily transferable?
We were about to do the same when our kids were young, we missed out and regretted it for 10 years. Try moving teenagers! No way! Do it now!
Other posters have made helpful comments about your DGS's speech, but I think the benefits outweigh the possible problems.

GagaJo Mon 25-Jan-21 12:54:21

It is only something we thought of this time because of the covid complications. DD & DGS are sick of being locked in the house. DGS is lonely and bored.

Once I took this job, the intention was to go home every holiday, and have them come here 2 or 3 holidays a year. But... covid. No travelling. I am not prepared to not be there for his growing up. So it is either go home with no job OR bring them here. IF I can.

So although DD isn't thrilled with the idea of Switzerland, it would be a way for them to have more freedom again and for me to be able to spend time with them. She would need to have a job to get a permit. My school MAY help with that.

dragonfly46 Mon 25-Jan-21 12:58:11

Both my children speak Dutch and English as they were brought up in the Netherlands. It also helped my DD to speak German and French. What a wonderful opportunity for them. I would certainly go ahead.

maddyone Mon 25-Jan-21 13:00:44

Sounds great Gaga, go for it.

Lucca Mon 25-Jan-21 13:02:34

Others have said it better, but if your daughter agrees I would bite her hand off and go for it. I’m all in favour of children experiencing other countries and languages. Perfect age too as he would take it in his stride.

lemongrove Mon 25-Jan-21 13:04:31

maddyone

Brilliant idea Gaga so long as your daughter agrees. Once she arrives, none of you would have to travel by plane very much. How would it work financially? Has your daughter got an income? Or can you afford to support all three of you? I’m not being nosy, just wondering as I don’t think your daughter works at present. Will nursery and school be free in Switzerland? Your little grandson will certainly benefit by being in nursery education at nearly three years old.
This is what Covid is doing to our children. Gaga’s grandson would certainly have been in nursery prior to Covid and unless there is a problem with his hearing, his speech would have progressed in nursery. I speak as an ex Early Years teacher.

I agree maddy

Being with your much loved little DGS will certainly be good for the both of you gaga .....only you know if it will be good for your DD.
Being with them either in Switzerland or the UK, so you can all be together seems the best option.Good luck with your decision.

Peasblossom Mon 25-Jan-21 13:06:20

Oh, I was going to post that I thought she’d need a job before she could get a permit. But obviously living there you would have known that🤭

Is it going to work if she’s not really keen? Just asking. Will she keep her home here to come back to if things don’t work out?

I know you just asked about language, which wouldn’t worry me one jot, but there’s a lot to think about.

GagaJo Mon 25-Jan-21 13:28:36

There is Peasblossom and it would be a mammoth task to sort out, but it would be a way for them to avoid the horrible covid time the UK is having. And it would make my remaining here (which is what my school wants, they are very keen to retain me) possible.

It is still much better here than the UK despite us being in lockdown too (schools are still open, for example). And because I live in a small town, the beautiful countryside is a 5 minute walk.

Hithere Mon 25-Jan-21 13:32:04

Agree with daddima.

silverlining48 Mon 25-Jan-21 14:21:53

It can only be a good thing re language. Children are like sponges. Wish my mum had talked to me in her language but she was too busy trying to learn English. Different times of course.
If dd wants to come and if it’s affordable given how expensive Switzerland is, why not? Could she let her UK accommodation ?

GagaJo Mon 25-Jan-21 22:00:51

Yes, we would need to rent it out. It'll need a fair bit doing before letting it, but no one can go anywhere yet so there is time.

Callistemon Mon 25-Jan-21 22:20:52

I think that as long as he has both you and his mother to chat to him at home in English and wants to communicate with other children at nursery in French? or German you may well find his speech comes on well in both languages when he has more stimulation.

Casdon Mon 25-Jan-21 22:47:32

I don’t think the COVID situation in the UK at the moment is the right reason, it has to be something that your daughter actively wants to do regardless of the current restrictions in the UK. The corner here is being turned now, so there will be a leveling off of restrictions compared with Switzerland.
Your grandson will adapt as long as his mum is happy, so it’s what she wants that is most important.

SueJW2106 Tue 26-Jan-21 10:06:54

Whereabouts in Switzerland are you. Could you afford to send your grandson to the international school in Geneva? (My cousin is head teacher there now, so I know it's a good one.)

GreenGran78 Tue 26-Jan-21 10:13:46

I agree with Caslon. If your daughter isn’t keen, she may not settle. What would happen to her UK home? Does she rent? If she owns her own home living abroad from a year or two could complicate matters.
As for worrying about your GS’s language, he would probably soak up both languages quite easily. I know a couple of families whose children have learned two without any problems, mixing up words at the beginning, but quickly sorting them out into separate languages and quickly becoming fluent.
I’m a bit cross with my Peruvian SIL. He was convinced that speaking two languages around my GD would confuse her, and wouldn’t be persuaded otherwise. So my very voluble almost 4 year old GD knows only a few Spanish words, when she could have been fluent in both languages by now.

GrammarGrandma Tue 26-Jan-21 10:18:46

My first grandson was slow to speak intelligibly. His little sister was articulate much earlier. Now he is six and speaks very precisely and mostly clearly. (He still has a little trouble with "l"s). His other granny is a retired speech therapist and has no worries about him. He Facetimed me last week to read me a book he has written about animals. His literacy skills are way up with his age level.