Bellochka Devyatkina was only three and a half years old when the editors of the Amazing People project on Russia 1 tracked her down. She was four by the time she was filming, but she still remains the youngest among the participants in the show. The youngest and one of the most amazing. After all, the girl speaks fluently in Russian, English, German, French, Spanish, Chinese and Arabic. Well, to really finish you off: at the age of three, Bella spoke five languages, and in six months she mastered two more … It is not surprising that after the broadcast, the video with Bella's performance on YouTube in a matter of days gained more than 5 million views and 160 thousand comments.
“We didn't expect this,” laughs Bella’s mother, Julia. - We did not even plan that we would get to the shooting, because we were worried about how our daughter would react to the studio and the audience. But Bella really liked it.
The film crew found a carnival mermaid tail for her. And when she finally got it, we couldn’t drag her away from Mosfilm for another hour and a half (the shooting of Amazing People is taking place there. - Author). Now Bella asks me once a week: "When are we going to shoot?"
However, the "examiners" of the show also had a difficult task: try to explain to a four-year-old baby that she needs to participate in a competition and win a million rubles! I had to come up with a whole quest.
- At first I was skeptical about the show, - says Julia. - Well, what is there to do for a small child among the adult participants? But on the other hand, I have an idea that early development methods should be popularized in our country. Indeed, many treat them with mockery or even aggression: they say that you are torturing a child. I want to convey to people that I'm not trying to raise a child prodigy. Bella has a talent for languages, but she's not a genius. Any child can achieve good results if the right approach is found. We communicate with people who are also engaged in the early development of their children, and all babies know 4 - 5 languages. In our circle, this does not cause excitement in anyone.
Yulia became interested in the methods of early development long before the birth of the girl. Back at the university.
- Then I started to study the topic of bilingualism (fluency in two languages. - Auth.), I looked at various methods. And when my daughter appeared, I really wanted her to speak two languages: Russian and English. I am an English teacher, so I spoke English to her myself. By ten months, Bella began to understand speech in two languages. And we tried to connect French (I studied it at the university). It turned out that the child has a real interest. I remember how she stood in her bed and, hearing French speech, began to scream and jump with delight …
Evgeny and Yulia Devyatkin now grab their heads - their daughter asks every week: "When will we go to the shooting?"
Photo: Channel "Russia"
Bella became interested in Arabic when she accidentally saw a cartoon in Arabic. And again everything was perceived with wild delight. Tutors were invited to study Arabic and other languages. Moreover, preference was given to native speakers.
All early development techniques teach mothers that the child should not be forced. He just needs to offer new information. And if the parents see that the baby absorbs it with pleasure, then they must continue to study. Bella has no interest in mathematics. And Julia says that the most important thing for her is not to put any pressure on the baby.
Bella works with tutors every day for several hours. Each month, an emphasis is placed on one language (they are taught five hours a week), while others are allocated two to three hours a week. But do not think that the child is put at the desk to write the keys of Chinese characters or learn German grammar. All classes are played in a playful way. Bella plays with the teacher with dolls, pyramids, or even goes for a walk. It's just that they speak to her in a foreign language.
- Bella does not know the word "study", for her there is the word "play". In the summer we went to the dacha, the teachers came there too. Everything is the same - we swim in the pool, make Easter cakes, swing on a swing, play tag, just at this time we speak Chinese, for example, or Arabic - depending on what we are doing now, - says Yulia … - I wanted Bella to be interested. Now we are attending a drama club where classes are in English. Bella is very fond of drawing and speaks French in the art studio. Thanks to the show, we found a figure skating coach, she speaks German, so the training will be held in German. I understand that when Bella grows up, some languages will remain passive for her, and she will stop paying so much attention to them. But I would like to keep French and English. And we thoughtthat you can send her to a school where children of foreigners study. For example, in French. There, the entire learning process will be in French.
The only thing is that we try to offer Bella languages from different language groups. Because knowledge of languages is the development of intelligence. And when a child "wiggles his brains" to construct the correct phrase in Arabic, for example, and then build it in English, this is a real exercise for the brain.
True, this summer Bella herself expressed a desire to learn Italian. We went to France and ended up in an international company. Bella talked very freely with the kids, but when she suddenly heard an unfamiliar Italian speech, she was even upset. Now he asks: "Let's learn Italian."
Bella does not know the word "study", for her there is the word "play"
Photo: Channel "Russia"
Ekaterina KOLISOVA, educational psychologist:
- From zero to six years there is a sensitive (most favorable. - Author) period of speech development. And the brain activity of a 3-year-old child is three times higher than that of an adult. No wonder babies learn languages so easily. And, developing the child in this direction, parents give him good tools for the future.
However, it is very important not to overwhelm the child. Indeed, from the point of view of psychology, bilingualism is often viewed as a problem: children whose parents, for example, are from different countries and speak different languages, often begin to speak later, their speech in general suffers greatly. Excessive loads can lead to overloads of the nervous system: from an overabundance of information and from an overabundance of communication. And then neurological manifestations are possible: hesitation in speech, stuttering, tics … Therefore, it is very important that parents, while developing a child, very closely follow the normal regime, the change in the child's activity, and full-fledged physical activity.
And further. At ten years old, the child's brain will turn on ordinary mechanisms. And all the tools that the parents tried to put in, the child may simply not want to use. And we must bear in mind that at some stage (although this is not necessary) the child may have a protest.
But if the kid does not protest in any way, expresses his emotions, runs and plays pranks, like all kids, and he is interested in doing it, then there are no contraindications to early development.
Anna SEMENOVICH, neuropsychologist, candidate of sciences:
- If we, the audience, knew the culture and history of our country better, we would remember that in pre-revolutionary times, children also had bonnets and governesses. Seven languages are, of course, many. But if a child in a decent noble family by the age of 5-6 did not know at least 3-4 languages, it was a shame to bring him out into the world. And in the gymnasium, Latin and ancient Greek were added to this set without fail. Thus, 5-6 languages is the standard set of an educated young person in the 19th century).
Prepared by Yaroslav KOROBATOV