LEARN YORUBA | TIPS TO TEACH YOUR CHILD

When I visited my husbands family, in West Africa, I noticed that my nieces and nephews though fluent in three sometimes four languages the majority of them could not speak Yoruba their tribal language. It got me thinking if these children just a stones throw from their ancestral land in Nigeria, surrounded by Yoruba speaking adults could lose their mother-tongue what hope did my little girl growing up abroad have? all the way in the U

At Polyglot Tot we strive to bring global learning within arms reach of the tiniest learners. Our Tribal Art Flashcards are for you, whether you are speaking several languages fluently at home or just getting started on your bilingual journey. We create beautiful, engaging products based on bohemian African textile art, to help young language learners and their grown-ups explore the tribal languages of Africa. As your family begins their journey to learn Yoruba with our Tribal Art Flashcards our hope is that you'll keep learning fun, visit our games page for fun new ways to interact with your little in Yoruba.

Here we've compiled a list of tips and tricks to supplement your flashcard learning and further reinforce your little polyglot tots understanding of Yoruba. This is not an extensive list but a taste of somethings that work in our family.

Best way to learn easy Yoruba to teach your child

1) Choose a time of day to speak your target language
I like starting the day in Yorùbá. By greeting my daughter in the morning, when she first wakes up in her target language it strengthens her Polyglot Tot muscles. It also helps to reinforce my knowledge.
Try:
a) Good Morning!
b) How did you sleep?
c) Let's brush our teeth
BONUS #FORTHECULTURE: Teach your children how to greet their elders in Yoruba language, the proper Yoruba way. 
For girls this means while kneeling down
For boys this means prostrating down 

2) 
Pick a common phrase to only say in Yoruba.  You say the phrase so often, your child will pick it up in no time, it will also familiarize the both of you with proper pronunciation.
Try:
a) "I love you" 
b) "thank you"
c) "take that out of your mouth, please."

​3)  Translate the world around you
a)

Best way to teach your child yoruba, if you are a native Yoruba Speaker

Though Yoruba is my Husband's first language after 10 years stateside with no one to talk to, he found it hard to engage our daughter in his mother tongue, especially after she began talking. The Tribal Art Flashcards benefit him as a native speaker, by serving as a helpful reminder to speak Yoruba to Noon. She'll choose a flashcard bring it over to him, curl up in his lap and they'll explore it together in Yoruba.

1) Encourage your child to respond to simple requests/ phrases such as
“Kilo maa jẹ?” (What will you eat?)  “Maa jẹ ẹba pẹlu ọbẹ ẹfọ” (I will eat ẹba with callaloo/spinach) 

2)Tell them jokes or make them laugh “Talo so?” tabi “Olori nla” ati bẹ bẹ lọ

Resources to teach your child Yoruba

1) Bilingual English Yoruba children's Books
     a. My Daddy Is A Giant by Carl Norac
     b. A is for Adire! Yoruba Cultural Dictionary by
2) Yoruba Coloring books
     a. Lets Explore the Languages of Africa! Yoruba Alphabet Coloring Book by Ayo books
3) Yoruba language Cartoons
     a. Bino & Fino Yoruba Episode
4) Yoruba language Sing Along Songs
     a. Baba Macdonald ni oko (Old Macdonald had a Farm) by The Culture Tree TV
     b. Eropílénì ó däàbò (Goodbye Aeroplane)  by The Culture Tree TV
     c. Ti nu ẹ ba dun (If you're happy and you know it) by The Culture Tree
I hope you find these tips helpful. Please do share if you have any tips of your own. What steps have you taken in teaching your children Yoruba? I’d love to hear from you.