Culture Club is pleased to bring you Baby Babble and Toddler Talk, which is a unique opportunity to expose your baby to the different phonemes or sounds of other languages. A baby takes in all the sounds of their native language by accumulating ‘data’ from the humans around them. During the ‘critical period’, before the baby’s first birthday, the baby is actually capable of taking in all the sounds from a given language. After the first year, until the age of 7, a child still acquires language by taking in data though language heard around him or her.
Patricia K. Kuhl is a Professor of Speech and Hearing Sciences and co-director of the Institute for Brain and Learning Sciences at the University of Washington. In this TED Talk she explains her research in this critical period in child development:
Patricia Kuhl: The linguistic genius of babies
Why is this important? When we traditionally expose a child to a foreign language, at adolescence, the ear’s ability to distinguish the new sounds of a language is almost entirely reduced. Thus learning the new language becomes more difficult, and producing the accurate sounds often becomes impossible. This difference in native and foreign sounds can cause a teenager to feel alienated in a language classroom, focused on their poor pronunciation and difficulty deciphering native oral production. By exposing your baby early you could leave an important imprint that will later serve him or her in learning foreign languages with ease.
Now you can expose your child to a new language even if you dont speak a second language yourself.
- Baby Babble is a new concept where a native or near-native speaker will come to your home and play with and speak to your baby in French or Spanish. (Other languages may be available; please inquire with the language you seek.) In addition to giving babies language exposure, this program gives stay-at-home parents some free time to shower, pay bills, or do other things around the home.
- Toddler Talk is similar to Baby Babble but with more focus on actual language understanding and eventual production. Parents can put together a small group of toddlers with friends or neighbors and create and host a ‘toddler club’. One of our teachers will come to your home and teach the little ones their first words in French or Spanish with games, song, books, and gestures.
For more information, please contact us.