'Baby Steps Into Welsh’ is Mudiad Meithrin's exciting podcast series.
Welsh TV presenter Nia Parry presents the series of podcasts that gives well-known parents the opportunity to share their real-life experiences of their children’s journey through Welsh-medium education to date.
In each episode Nia Parry meets parents who discuss their personal journeys very openly and Dr Enlli Thomas, a pioneer in the field of bilingualism, joins Nia to share her expertise and experiences with parents facing the decision about choosing Welsh-medium education for their children.
TV newsreader & presenter Lucy Owen launches series 2 of Baby Steps Into Welsh! In a lively and honest conversation with our presenter Nia Parry, Lucy talks about the decision to send her son Gabs to Cylch and into Welsh-medium education, despite many failed attempts to learn the language herself. We learn how an interview with a neuroscientist helped her make up her mind to send Gabs to a Welsh secondary school and how Gab’s was so determined to continue in Welsh language education, despite the fact it meant getting up extra early to catch the bus! Lucy shares how she sees the Welsh language as a gift for children and how she wishes she’d been brought up today, where there is a greater emphasis on learning and speaking Welsh from birth.
Throughout this series of Baby Steps Into Welsh, expert of language acquisition, Dr Enlli Thomas from Bangor University, will be listening in and sharing her thoughts on what the contributors have to say, as well as answering questions from the listeners. If you have a question about Welsh language education or if you’d like to share your own experience with Enlli, email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
Laura McAllister and Llinos Jones
Academic and former Wales international footballer Laura McAllister and her partner, radio producer Llinos Jones talk about their differing relationships with the Welsh language growing up. With their daughters Annie and Bella going to the Cylch Meithrin from the age of 2, Laura talks about the responsibility she feels to help protect and preserve the language for future generations. Plus, host Nia Parry listens back to the interview with our resident language expert, Dr Enlli Thomas of Bangor University who gives her expert view on the subjects discussed. If you have a question about Welsh language education or if you’d like to share your own experience with Nia and Enlli later in the series, email us on email@example.com.
Wayne and Connagh Howard
Father and son Wayne and Connagh Howard are Nia’s guests on this episode. Wayne talks about the conversation with his friend that led to him and his wife sending Connagh and his sister to Cylch Meithrin – and which, for Wayne, started a 28-year love affair with the Welsh language. Connagh, a 2020 Love Island contestant, talks about why he felt it was important that he used his Welsh on primetime TV to help raise its profile. Listening along to the interview is Dr Enlli Thomas of Bangor University, who gives her professional insight into the benefits of language learning and the mysteries of ‘code-switching’.
Sarah Coltman and Fran Rumbelow
Nia is joined by two mums who were born in England and who have recently moved to Wales with their families. Sarah Coltman from Essex made to the move to her husband’s beloved home city, Swansea. Fran Rumbelow was learning Welsh online before moving from Nottinghamshire to Pembrokeshire. Bravely, both Sarah and Fran have chosen to send their children to Welsh-medium nurseries and schools for their children. We hear about the worries and insecurities they faced and how they feel about the decision now. Listening along to the conversation is Dr Enlli Thomas of Bangor University who gives us her perspectives on the themes that emerge.
Dr Enlli Thomas
What books should I get my children to read? How can I help with homework? And can my child lose their Welsh? As a finale to Series 2, our resident expert, Dr Enlli Thomas of Bangor University answers your questions about Welsh medium education.