Multi-lingual music and language company babyboomboom is advocating a return to fun for babies and toddlers and thinks its band bags which contain a CD of well-known nursery rhymes in English and a second language with a selection of musical instruments, will do just that.
babyboomboom takes traditional and well-known nursery rhymes in English and repeats each verse in a second language – currently available in French or Spanish. The idea is that children sing along and in the process pick up some of the sounds that will help them learn a second language as they grow up.
Founding Director of babyboomboom, Juliet Machan says: “It is very easy to put too much pressure on children to achieve greatness before they have learned to have some old-fashioned fun, not least because fun has been shown to significantly enlarge our ability to learn and understand.”
babyboomboom works through active learning – in essence, the children teach themselves. Even before they can speak, babies and toddlers listening to babyboomboom CDs participate by joining in with the actions in the right places, and the idea of the instruments is that children can play along too.
Myra Barrs, an expert in what happens when young children begin to read and how they transfer this to their writing, talks about ‘tuning the page.’ She says children listen to the tunes in the words; their patterns and rhythms, and has shown through years of research that children get a lot of their implicit understanding of how language works from that enjoyment. A simple thing, like reading stories aloud to your children, has a huge impact on their lifetime enjoyment and ability with reading and writing. And nursery songs and rhymes remain very powerful and potent for children. These songs and rhymes are whole stories, with linguistic patterns and are musically enticing. They don’t have to make sense, or be based in the natural world (who ever said a story had to make sense?) but they do engage children and they learn a vast amount about how language and ‘literacy’ works from them. It seems a pity that schools, under pressure from a government insistent on measurement, and in their urgency to impart the science of words and sentences, reducing the sense of enjoyment.
What happens when other languages are introduced into this exciting and heady mixture of words and music? In short, it is hard to determine a measurable effect, but we can make a reasonable judgement based on the excellent work done by language teachers, our own intuition and the observation of our own children in how they react to being exposed to other languages through song and rhyme. The children love it, and quickly begin to repeat and play with the sounds of other languages. The emphasis is not on learning for assessment; it is about allowing children, from the time of their birth, to hear the sounds of languages in a fun and enticing way. There is a growing interest in introducing young children to other languages in a variety of ways, and already babyboomboom’s multilingual musical CDs are proving extremely popular; not just with parents who want their children to be well-rounded people, but with the children themselves. Childhood is mercilessly short in our modern world, and anything that can return fun to literacy has to be good in itself.
Photos and samples available for press.
More information available at www.babyboomboom.com
Mob: + 44 7768 283074
Tel: +44 1491 636262
About babyboomboom Ltd
babyboomboom® Ltd provides fun ways to familiarise babies and toddlers with the sounds of other languages. Creating fun, lively and participative multi-lingual products for the whole family to enjoy, babyboomboom launched with its hugely popular multi-lingual musical CDs and Band-Bag musical instrument collections. The CDs are original recordings of well-known and traditional songs and nursery rhymes played first in English, and then repeated in a second language. babyboomboom is not a provider of language courses, but does strive to develop products that contribute positively towards a child’s early development. babyboomboom sells direct at www.babyboomboom.com
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