Franklin Report Report Card for The Language Workshop for Children in New York City
★ Franklin Report Card
The Language Workshop for Children
888 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10065
(212) 396-0830
Language Instruction

Services & Specialties
Language classes that are fun and show results

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FR Review:
The Language Workshop for Children is a learning center/playspace where curriculum takes the form of song, dance, drawing, and foreign language free time. Instruction is interactive and fun and encourages students to pick up language (French, Spanish, Chinese, and Italian) organically. Kids learn new words by association, rather than translation (no English speaking) and classes are geared to stimulate all types of learners, ''the movers, the lookers, and the listeners." In fact, one glimpse at the classroom and you may mistake it for a playroom, with wooden cubbies, toy chests, and art projects pinned to the blue walls.

Francois Thibaut founded The Language Workshop for Children in 1973 when early language education was still seen as controversial and potentially detrimental to development. A slim, grey-haired gentlemen with glasses and an accent as French as his name, Francois is an innate teacher and the heart of the operation. He can gauge a person's learning style on a first meeting and is not shy about encouraging newcomers to grasp a phrase or two. He crafted the Thibaut method to speak directly to children. Francois is clear that there are distinct differences between the way children and adults learn. "Give adults a formula and they can make sentences" because "adults relate to techniques," and can easily learn systems. "Children do not relate to systems, [but] they [will] discover rules if you give them facts." This is the premise of his highly effective method and the world's first baby-through-adolescent language program (ages six months to nine years). Teachers are trained to engage children emotionally (with exciting singalong stories and movement exercises) because, as Francois says, "there is a link between emotion and memory." The Thibaut method capitalizes on children's tendencies to learn through participation and retain words to which they relate. Take home CDs and workbooks help polish materials covered in class. Rates start at about $600 per semester for one class a week. Full school year costs range from $1,500 to $2,000 depending on child's age and class length. Fees are higher than the competition. However, Francois says that his approach will have a child who comes in once a week, speaking conversationally and even fluently, within six months.

Representative Client Comments:
"If Francois had classes for adults I'd be first in line!"

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