It took “Charlotte” ~3 to 3.5 years of work (1.5 years of homeschooling and ~1.5 to 2 years of regular private school, from second half of 3rd grade till ~middle of six grade) to get her English competency back to native peer level (matched for age and intellect, I would say). She just made the first of two cuts for Battle of the Books program at school. She reads English novels fast. She writes well too….I think. Well, at least she loves to write and writes profusely. And she did quite well in the language portion of one of those national standardized tests toward the end of last school year.
So, once again, that’s what worked for us: little emphasis in English early on, with focus on Chinese competency up till ~ 8-9, and then catching up in English afterwards. By end of third grade, the goal is to reach end of second grade reading level in Taiwan or ~ second grade first semester level in mainland China (more advanced there). Yeah, it’s no easy task. It’s hard. But so is spending 15-20 hours a week playing the piano or doing gymnastic. But it is doable.
And if one of the parents in the family can’t comfortably read my writings here, it is highly unlikely that the said parents will be comfortable slacking off in their child’s English early on to make room for enough Chinese. Maybe that’s one good reason that I am not in a hurry to translate all these into Chinese, yet.