Monday, 24 October 2011

Fun and games

Monsieur R and Puce's recent séjour in France was an opportunity for me to raid the charity shops and stock up on board games.  I'm getting in the supplies before the weather turns really nasty, in anticipation of cold, wet weekends.

Puce is learning to play draughts (dames in French) and seems to have got the hang of it.  So she played against her Papa.  After a while I got fed up of being called in to referee what each of them was doing, so we decided to google the rules just to check we were all on the same wavelength.

And wouldn't you just know it.  The rules for French dames are almost but not quite the same as the rules for draughts.  For a start, the pieces are "men" and become "kings", whereas the French ones are "pions" that become "ladies".  The crowned "lady", unlike the British version, can then move several spaces in one go to "take" an adverse piece.  Further reading indicated that the French board is bigger and uses more pieces.

So yet again, another unanticipated area where the child growing up with two languages will not only have to learn one set of rules, but also the set of rules that applies in the other country.  Proving yet again that bilingualism isn't just about the words...

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