variants of the OPOL definition
Thread poster: Jeff Allen

Jeff Allen  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 22:47
Multiplelanguages
+ ...
Dec 26, 2005

I was just reading through the glossary of the "The Bilingual Pages" at:
http://www.angelfire.com/ut/henrikholm/bilingual/glossary.html

There are definitions for One Person, One Language (OPOL) and Both Persons, Both Languages (BPBL).

The OPOL definition seems to assume that the children always hear a single language from each person in their environment, yet I think that is unlikely is most situations for bi/multi-lingual families.
In the context with my 2 children, they only hear English from me when I am speaking directly to them. And they hear French when their mother is speaking to them (as well as all others in the family and community). As French is historically the language spoken in our home, the children certainly hear me speak more French than English. My wife only speaks English to them when she is reading a book in English to them. She and I do not speak in English together.
This is different from BPBL in which both parents might use both languages interchangeably with the children.
So maybe a new acronym needs to be created: HOPOL for Hybrid OPOL or MOPOL for Mixed OPOL.

Jeff


 

Berni Armstrong  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:47
Member
English
+ ...
Not quite Jeff... Dec 26, 2005

Jeff Allen wrote:
...The OPOL definition seems to assume that the children always hear a single language from each person in their environment, ....


Not quite Jeff, the OPOL definition there clearly states that each parent consistently speaks to their child using one language. It does not state that the child will not hear that parent speaking another language. The OPOL concept is based on consistency in direct communications with the child and almost every family I know who have stuck to it as a pattern have succesfully brought up bilingual kids.


 

Jeff Allen  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 22:47
Multiplelanguages
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
thanks Berni on clarification of OPOL definition Dec 26, 2005

Jeff Allen wrote:
...The OPOL definition seems to assume that the children always hear a single language from each person in their environment, ....


Berni Armstrong wrote:
Not quite Jeff, the OPOL definition there clearly states that each parent consistently speaks to their child using one language. It does not state that the child will not hear that parent speaking another language. The OPOL concept is based on consistency in direct communications with the child and almost every family I know who have stuck to it as a pattern have succesfully brought up bilingual kids.


Thanks for the clarification on that Berni.
Yes, the OPOL definition at that page does indicate that statement. The BPBL ones is less explicit. It's probably the discussions that I've seen around OPOL that shown a range of interpretations about it.

I would agree with you that it should refer to the communication to the child.

Jeff


 


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variants of the OPOL definition

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