Trendy Brooklyn babies learn French — and sip on ‘babyccinos’

Nadine Bells
Shine OnAugust 23, 2012

For cosmopolitan babies in Brooklyn, Baby French class is the place to be.

Moms are hoping their too-young-to-speak tots will benefit from the early exposure to a second language.

"I'm one of those moms that said she's going to do this and that and everything else," Naila Daaj, who brought her 9-month-old daughter Monira Lucas to Tuesday morning's class, tells

"I want her to experience as much as possible and also for her to hear the way the language sounds so she can pick it up later."

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Lyndsey St. John, 28, a Montessori-trained teacher who started the class, says, "It's really good to start those pathways forming at a very early age. Anywhere from 8 months to 3 years is when children are really sponges. They're picking up everything."

A 2002 study finds that children who learn two languages at once sound like a native in both tongues and are able to talk at the same speed as children who only speak one language.

"This [study] flies in the face of educational policy that says expose a child to only to one language at first," lead author Laura-Ann Petitto tells WebMD. "This does not support the holding policy that today is rampant in education. A child is not confused by a second language or delayed in learning the community language."

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Besides, Brooklyn dwellers appear to be having a love affair with all things French.

This summer, the New York Times published a piece about food trucks in Paris. It talks about how Parisians revere Brooklyn food trucks.

"Among young Parisians, there is currently no greater praise for cuisine than 'très Brooklyn,' a term that signifies a particularly cool combination of informality, creativity and quality."

Brooklynites are now trying to raise their kids with a flair for the Parisian. And it's not just the Baby French classes, either. Kids can sip on "babyccinos" at certain coffeehouses in the trendy New York neighbourhood.

"Babyccino is hardly a scientific term, with some shops and customers using the word to describe a macchiato-like beverage featuring a shot of decaf espresso topped with steamed milk and froth, while others use it to describe steamed milk with foam on top and a touch of cinnamon. Baristas around the borough say they get requests for both versions of the drink," the Brooklyn Paper reports.

As for learning French at a super-young age, studies have shown that babies start learning language in the womb. To really get ahead, bilingual-wise, maybe expectant Brooklyn moms should be taking French classes themselves.

Watch the video below examining the benefits of being born to an older mom.

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