Tell us a little about your family…
We are three nomadic language geeks. My husband Arham is originally from Korea, but grew up in New Zealand from the age of 11, then returned to his homeland by way of China and a few other places. We met in his hometown of Busan while I was working in Korea, then followed my teaching work together to India and Vietnam before moving home to have our son Namo (14 months). We’re currently based in South-East London where I am running Struck Fluent, Arham is studying psychotherapy and Namo is bimbling about being ace.
What are the 3 words that define your parenting style?
Bloomin’ Great Hippies
What is your children’s current favourite toy?
Spherovelo – it’s an awesome bubble-shaped precursor to a bike. I come from a long line of cyclists and was shoved on a bike so early that I don’t even remember learning to ride, so I’m very proud of how much he loves it.
What is your favourite toy of all time?
I used to love those rainbow slinkies that you got in the 90s – hours of sending them up and down stairs.
What is your fondest childhood memory?
I don’t really have just one, but my early childhood was pretty special. My mum and I were living with my grandparents who had seven children (hats off, granny), so aunties and uncles were always drifting in and out, bringing stories and games and laughter. I really think we miss out in the West by not living in extended family groups anymore – it was amazing to have all those different influences and relationships as a young kid, and they definitely shaped me as a person.
What have you found most surprising about your children / about being a parent?
How many hours you can lose just gazing at someone’s face.
Do you have any tips for other parents? About toys, learning or anything else…
With my professional head on: language learning is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child. Especially post-Brexit, languages open doors both professionally and holistically: they give us access to cultures, relationships and experiences that monolingual people just don’t have in the same way.
As a parent I’d love to see more solidarity and less pitting of parents – particularly mothers – against each other. It’s a tough gig, especially with modern financial and social pressures, and this is one thing we are actually all in together.
Struck Fluent: Tutors of Modern Foreign Languages and ESL in London.
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