Joe Lai from Ystrad Mynach had never considered learning Welsh or choosing Welsh-medium education for her son before attending Cymraeg for Kids sessions, but now she realises all the opportunities that are available.

“My first experience of Cymraeg for Kids was a baby massage group at Ystrad Mynach Library. I attended it for about four months, then moved onto the story and song group at Caerphilly Library. It gave me the chance to get out of the house and meet other mothers - we chatted and shared information about looking after babies, which was very helpful as I’m a first time mum.

“The baby massage sessions allowed me do something with my baby, Joseph, other than just the usual feeding/talking /cuddling when he was really young. I also learned some Welsh through the songs at each session, which made me want to learn more of the language. I then attended Clwb Cwtch with my baby and try to attend the story and song whenever possible. 

“Joseph really enjoyed baby massage as it was very relaxing for him, I gave him massages every day until he was about 6 months old. The singing while we were learning the massaging skills fascinated him, and as he grew older, he kicked and moved his arms while we sang.

“Before attending the sessions, it never crossed my mind that I would learn Welsh or send Joseph to Welsh-medium education. I have since explored other opportunities for me to learn the language, and will consider both English and Welsh medium schools when Joseph is old enough. 

“I would definitely recommend Cymraeg for Kids sessions to other parents who don’t speak Welsh. I am a translator and I understand all the benefits of being multilingual. The sessions allow parents as well as the babies to acquire a language without knowing they’re learning it. As the Cymraeg for Kids sessions are baby-focused rather than language-focused, through doing all the activities with my baby, I learnt some Welsh and am able to use what I learnt with Joseph.”

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