With the push of a button on her belly, Baby Thando says a phrase in English before repeating it in Zulu. She says 25 phrases in total, which include “I love you/ Ngiyakuthanda”, and “I’m hungry/ Ngilambile.”
“Everyone loves dolls but 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.
Dolls are the quintessential toys.
They’re been around forever and for good reason. They encourage role play and develop gross and fine motors while helping a child express their emotions.
For many children dolls are an integral aspect of their childhood and no doubt their identity.
It’s no wonder then that we adults throw our toys when a doll emerges that has a completely unrealistic/ idealistic body or why we celebrate when we see dolls of colour being made that we know will help build the confidence of young children across various groups.
Toys, and their value, in short are not to be underestimated.
Zikode says the “soft bodied” doll is perfect to cuddle and adds that great consideration was given to her skin tone.
“We tried to ensure that we created the right skin tone for Baby Thando, a tone that most South African children can identify with,” says Zikode.
“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 children practice language and develop new vocabulary. “
The Baby Love Range also includes Baba Tasha, which says Afrikaans phrases and Baby Bella, which says 50 English phrases.
Each doll comes with a plate, spoon, fork, bottle and dummy for loads of fun play and sells for about R 699.99.