Remember New Year’s Eve, 2019? Nobody could have suspected what lay in store for us just a few short months later. That includes the millions of parents and caregivers who, during Lockdown 2020, suddenly found themselves having to take on teaching duties for their children. This has often included helping little ones to develop language skills.
There are all kinds of resources out there to help support language development, including Tiny Happy People
, backed by the Duchess of Cambridge and many other household names
. As a mum of three constantly in the public eye, it’s apparent that the Duchess understands the importance of communication in the early years. This BBC initiative includes interactive weekly schedules, tips and advice, crafts and science, and SEND resources.
In bilingual families, however, it isn’t just one language that needs to be developed, but two - which is where Mantra Lingua’s specially designed resources can help. For over 18 years, we’ve been working with Bookstart
on dual language titles
to help with this crucial life stage.
Some of the books enjoyed by Mantra Lingua’s own family of children include dual language board-books like Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes
, Row, Row Your Boat
, Wheels on the Bus
, and If You're Happy
. For slightly older children (3+), there’s the Let's Go series
, Errol's Garden
, Touch, Listen, Learn
and My Bilingual Talking Dictionary
. Using the pen
means these books can truly come alive and become completely interactive, and we can personally vouch for the enthusiasm of 1-year olds and 4-year olds in the family! They love hearing the narrative recorded by familiar voices of parents and caregivers as they turn the pages, and they also have fun recording their own voice and listening to the playback.
While tablets and smartphones have become go-to educational devices in many cases, they can sometimes feel like a very passive way of teaching. One of the most positive aspects of the Mantra Lingua pen plus book plus voice approach is that it’s interactive. Several language skills are developed - listening, reading, and speaking. You also have the reassurance of knowing that it’s safe to let your child lose themselves in the pages; the books are specially designed for the Early Years.
Children really feel they can read the book for themselves, they become so familiar with the words and the accompanying pictures. And where there are new words, they can sound them out, syllable by syllable, in both languages. With the sense of achievement comes increased confidence.
So if you’re looking for a guilt-free way to entertain, educate, encourage and enthuse your little one when it comes to getting a headstart in bilingual language education, we’d like to end with a (kind of) mathematical equation - Board Book plus Pen plus Bilingual Playback plus Bilingual Recording=Tiny Happy People indeed!