When Were You Aware?

/   Sun Apr 12, 2009 6:40 pm GMT
When was the first time you were aware that there were other languages beyond your first one?
Skippy   Sun Apr 12, 2009 7:46 pm GMT
Being in Dallas, there were certainly a lot of Spanish speakers, but it wasn't until I was about 8. One of my dad's patients was a Viennese woman, whose husband was from Milan. They had been in Dallas for a few years when my dad delivered her son, and they lived in Dallas until he was about 5, then they moved to Lyon. So his first language was English and he spoke Italian at home, but he was also fluent in German. When we visited them in Lyon a few years later he was fluent in French as well and learning Spanish at school.

Anyway, when I was 8 we visited them in Modena and my brother and I would play soccer with the kids in the neighborhood; that was when I first realized there were other languages, and it wasn't just English. I know 8 is kind of old to be realizing that, but as a child from Texas it may be rather young.
visitante   Tue Apr 14, 2009 6:13 pm GMT
I first noticed when I started kindergarten. I couldn't talk to some of the mexican students because of the language barrier. It was quite alarming at first. Now I speak spanish, I appreciate the language and the culture all the more.
Jef   Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:22 am GMT
I really don't remember not being aware of other languages. I've always known that there were other languages that I couldn't understand. I do recall, however, when I noticed for the first time that not everyone spoke English the same way that I did. I was probably about 8 or 9 years old when I first noticed different accents like English, Scottish, Australian, etc. Of course, I had heard those accents many times before that, but I had never really paid any attention to them.
CommonAswhole   Wed Apr 15, 2009 12:35 pm GMT
I always used to think that Dutch was the basic language and that people learn to speak different languages when they grow older. I think I was like 6 before I realized that there were other languages.
At that time I didn't even know I spoke Dutch, I just spoke language.
CommonAswhole   Wed Apr 15, 2009 12:37 pm GMT
TBH, I think I was 8 before I realized people spoke different first languages, but I was 6 when I noticed the existance of French and English.
USA   Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:30 pm GMT
What the hell are you people talking about? What is 'another language'? Don't bullshit! By the way, I'm 38.