Sunday, March 13, 2011

Jaa ne

I've been trying to introduce some Japanese words to my 3 year old nephew's vocabulary. Supposedly this is the best time to learn a second language because his baby brain is still developing but he gets pretty upset when I tell him something is a different word so that we have some version of this conversation over and over.

Me: *points at a tree* Ki. Sore wa ki.

Nephew: Noooooo, that's a tree!

Me: Ki.

Nephew: Treeee!

Having two words for the same thing just isn't jiving right now so I decided to just stick with a few phrases. He already knew oishii (delicious) and the next phrase I tried to teach him was jaa ne (see you later). For the longest time I would say jaa ne when they would leave and wave. He always answered back with his name. We couldn't figure it out. It finally dawned on us that he thought I was saying Jenny (I am Aunt Jenny after all) so he said his name.

He's just stopped doing that and was finally saying jaa ne back. Well, really it still sounded like Jenny but it was progress. Until yesterday when Mom said jaa ne as they were leaving and he responded with a confused look, "No you're Nana."

Maybe Japanese lessons need to be put on hold until he gets a better handle on English.

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