Friday, 31 January 2014

Further Adventures In Welsh

I've written in the past about our adventures in learning Welsh, and the difficulties we face in supporting Squeaky's education in a language that we don't speak ourselves.  It's not like learning a language
in secondary school where children have the skills to research, practice and learn independently, Squeaky still needs those around her to reinforce what she's learning, and that's really difficult when you don't have a clue.

Her pronunciation is getting better through repetition, and she's been introduced to a few new songs at school, with greater or lesser degrees of success.  Her latest song however, made me laugh more than maybe it should.

Mr Hapus had a wee, had a wee, ha ha!
Mr Hapus had a wee, had a wee, ha ha!

The internet comes to my rescue at times like this, and apparently what she should be singing is 
Mr Hapus ydw'i, ydw'i, ha ha!
(pronounced roughly Mr Hapus adoo ee, adoo ee, ha ha)

Or in English, Mr Happy is my name, is my name, ha ha! Almost to the tune of If you're happy & you know it.  Not that you'd realise, because right now, Squeaky is not going to be setting the next series of the X Factor on fire.  

I know Welsh isn't deliberately full of words that sound to the untrained ear as though they are bathroom related. But when you're teaching to a bunch of 3 & 4 year olds, to whom bodily functions are the most hilarious thing imaginable, there's not much that's going to convince them that they shouldn't be singing about toilets, or having a wee.  And to be honest, here's times where I'm no more mature either. Many pop songs sound better if you substitute heart with arse, or I think so anyway. Think about Billy Ray Cyrus (just for a minute!) Achy Breaky Arse is a whole lot funnier.

Talking to a few other mums, it seems that Had A Wee is quite a common misunderstanding of the song, and will pass in the same way as all the rest.  I'm just intrigued as to what bathroom related misunderstanding Squeaky's going to come home with next.  And how to keep a straight face when she sings it at the top of her voice in the supermarket.

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