Ny barnbokspratare: Laura Geiger

Hej!laura-portraits069

How exciting to be welcomed to Barnboksprat as its first English-language blogger! I bring a unique perspective as a writer and mother who is in the process of learning not only the Swedish language but what it means to be Swedish, an experience that now one in five people living in Sweden share.

After only three months of living in Sweden, it is clear to me that Americans, with our high energy and intense emotions, stick out among Swedes like a sore thumb. I can only hope that going forward, my enthusiasm is more charming than annoying and that our readers, whether Swedish-language learners or native speakers, glean something useful from my reviews. Just as in real life, I look forward to creating space where everyone is welcome.

I call myself a serial expat because I moved from the USA to Canada to France and now to Österlen. My days of country hopping may finally be over, but the experience of immigrating will last for years to come. Maintaining personal identity while negotiating a sense of belonging in a new culture is a tricky process for both children and adults. The good news is that books help. Children’s books, especially, provide a window into a country’s widely embraced cultural commonality and heritage. Add to that the simplified language and supporting illustrations, and you have a crash course for new Swedes on the shelves of your local library.

I am a poet, artist, and enthusiastic supporter of expressive arts. I have worked as an elementary art teacher and as a homeschooling mama to my three children (born in 2004, 2007, and 2010). With an academic background in sociology and interest in second language acquisition, I am eager to share how our family is using children’s books to navigate our first steps into this new land of ours.

Happy reading!
Laura

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Författare: Laura Geiger

I call myself a serial expat because I moved from the USA to Canada to France and now to Sweden. My days of country­ hopping may finally be over, but the experience of immigrating will last for years to come. Maintaining personal identity while negotiating a sense of belonging in a new culture is a tricky process for both kids and adults. The good news is that books help. Children’s books, especially, provide a window into a country’s widely embraced cultural commonality and heritage. Add to that the simplified language and supporting illustrations, and you have a crash course for new Swedes on the shelves of your local library. I am a poet, artist, and enthusiastic supporter of expressive arts. I have worked as an elementary art teacher and as a homeschooling mama to my three children (born in 2004, 2007, and 2010). With an academic background in sociology and interest in second language acquisition, I am eager to share through Barnboksprat how our family is using children’s books to navigate our first steps into this new land of ours.

2 reaktioner till “Ny barnbokspratare: Laura Geiger”

  1. Hi!

    Welcome, it sounds exciting with an English blogger on a Swedish blog. Look forward to reading your posts. I’m bilingual with Finnish as my mother tongue, I was born in Sweden and was brought up here. Now I have two children and I struggle with my conscience whether I should teach them Finnish or not. I consider my Swedish as my first language now since I don’t use Finnish more than with my family and relatives. On one hand it would be fantastic if they understand and speak a bit of Finnish, on the other the language won’t be as fully developed since my Finnish gets poorer year by year. Now I’ve just started my own blog in order to keep track of the Swedish children books we read. Language development is important to me, therefore we read and discuss books a lot. Check my blog, boktajm.wordpress.com. Regards Bokmama

  2. Hej, Bokmama! Thank you for the welcome.

    It sounds to me that you are saying the only downside is that their Finnish will be less than excellent. Personally, I think that’s just fine. The research suggests that what will happen for them is twofold:

    1) Their brains will construct the rules of grammar and inflection for Finnish despite any holes that you may have developed in your own knowledge. They may not end up fluent (I’m not sure of their ages…), but the foundation will be there if they want to pursue Finnish when they grow up.

    2) Their Swedish will improve. Exposure to a second language has been proven to increase literacy in the native tongue.

    and a bonus 3) Again, depending on their ages, they may feel much closer to you and their Finnish relatives if, as you say, they begin to be able to understand some words. Inviting the kids into that part of your identity can bring an emotional closeness and inclusion that would benefit all of you.

    So I say go for it! You can make it as playful as you like. If they see Finnish vocabulary as a game, all the better.

    Laura

    P.S. Your blog looks great!

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