How to not sound like an EllinoAmeriKanadezaki

So as I sit here and type I am trying to figure out the best way to continue the Greek language with the kid.  Obviously I want to make sure she can communicate with her grandparents and family members in Greece.  I try to think back about my upbringing and I can remember being in first grade doing spelling words with my tenant because my parents couldn’t help me.  Thinking back to that moment, I’m sure I’m not the only first generation American/Canadian/Australian who was in that boat.  Our parents immigrated to other countries so that we would have ‘a better life,’ which really meant more opportunities.  Greek was my first language and I do believe it helped me learn English. I don’t want to have a Mr. Portokalis moment alla My Big Fat Greek Wedding but the root word of many words is in fact Greek.  Saying all that how did my parents know how much to push me to make sure I learned Greet to not sound like an EllinoAmerikanaki and in my daughter’s case to have her not sound like an EllinoAmeriKanadezaki.  Yes I totally made that word up but if you’re Greek, you get my point.  I don’t want her to have that accent.  I don’t want people in Greece to think of her being any less Greek because she wasn’t born there.  A difficult thing for me to grasp is why so many programs and Greek Schools start at a later age.  Most language is grasped in the first two to three years so why wait until the child is four or five years old?  Would it make sense to come up with a curriculum that is play/song based to get our little ones going?

So help me out parents, at what age did you put your child in a Greek program? At what age did see your child engage with their Greek friends/family members in Greek? Do you think we should be doing more, earlier?

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A little ditty about Jack and really in all seriousness I'm a daughter, sister, wife and mother. I'm a Greek-American, who has transplanted in Canada. As a first time mom I'm sharing some things as I go along.

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