Grunting and whining

Hi. I’ve been off the boards for ages. We’ve moved and still don’t have the internet at home yet, so I don’t have much opportunity. I miss Forumosa!

My question for you other parents is concerning language aquisition. My son has spoken, when he speaks clearly enough to tell, almost exclusivly English, with the odd Mandarine word tossed in. He does obviously understand most of what is said to him in Mandarine by strangers or my husband’s co-workers.

He is only two and a half, but over the last 6 to 8 months had become very verbal, with correct grammar and complete sentences, but in only in English. I read a lot of books and (parts of) the newspaper to him! He can also read at least 10 to 15 English words himself.

But I reicently took a conversation class for kids about 6 years old. Small class, and I’ve been taking him with me and treating him as any other student since his skills are about the same. He has started to pick up a lot of Chinese from the other children in the school, which is great! That’s really needed with us because his Chinese family, for the most part, speak at least some English and almost never speak Mandarine to him. I’ve asked and asked, but I guess they just can’t speak Mandarine while I’m around. Mental block, I guess.

Anyway, since my son’s Mandarine vocabulary has been expanding, he’s started to grunt or whine to express himself to me, or to answer me. I really can’t STAND the whinning. I have to insist on a yes or no responce, and spend a lot of time dealing with his frustraition when I can’t understand what he wants when he won’t tell me, in either language!

I just wondered if any of you have experienced this with your kids? How did you deal with it and how long did it last?