Baby Thando is an adorable new doll that is also the first of its kind, because this doll speaks Zulu. Baby Thando is a baby doll designed specifically for little girls in South Africa and is set to pave the way for a new generation of dolls.
Baby Thando is the very first Zulu-speaking doll, made especially for South African girls. With the push of a button on her belly, the doll speaks 25 phrases in English and 25 phrases in Zulu. She first says a phrase in English which is then followed by the Zulu translation. Phrases include: “I love you/ Ngiyakuthanda”, and “I’m hungry/ Ngilambile.”
“Baby Thando is no ordinary doll. She speaks Zulu and this makes her the first of her kind. The fact that she also has an educational aspect is a huge plus for both parents and children. She is the perfect companion for children who want to learn English, a language which is not their mother tongue. Thando also provides the opportunity for children to start speaking Zulu or add to their vocabulary,” says Sphe Zikode – Brand Manager for Prima Toys.
Baby Thando is a soft bodied doll. What’s more, the doll has perfect skin tone, something which was an extremely important factor during the design stages of the product. “We tried to ensure that we created the right skin tone for Baby Thando, a tone that South African girls can identify with. This was very important,” continues Zikode.
Learning through Play
“Playing is a child’s primary and most important job as it is both essential to development – cognitive and motor – and hugely beneficial. Through play, be it by themselves or with others, children develop fine and gross motor skills, practice language and develop new vocabulary. With Baby Thando, children have the added benefit of learning a new language and new words,” continues Zikode.
Playing with dolls provides the opportunity for children to understand new learning concepts and develop imaginative play skills as they care for the doll. Furthermore, this type of play is ideal for experiencing and expressing different emotions and relationships as part of role-play.
Role-playing with Baby Thando also encourages the use of feeding utensils, which is excellent practice for real mealtimes. It also develops fine motor skills through the dressing of the doll. Moreover, it encourages the practice of dynamic balance skills when rocking the doll like you would a real baby.
The Baby Love Range
There are two other dolls in Prima Toys’ Baby Love range – Baba Tasha and Baby Bella. Baba Tasha speaks 50 phrases in Afrikaans, including “Ek is honger” and “Ek is lief vir jou” and many more. Baby Bella is English-speaking and also features 50 phrases.