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Sing 'n Learn - Press Releases



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - April 18, 1997 - Two new products developed and produced by Master Communications, Inc., of Cincinnati make learning Korean and Chinese fun and natural for children of all ages.

Sing 'n Learn Chinese and Sing 'n Learn Korean uses familiar melodies to teach basic vocabulary and pronunciation. Each 32-page songbook contains illustrations featuring Penny and Tommy Panda and a digitally recorded cassette with more than 20 vocals on one side and music only on the other. The book also includes English translations, suggested activities and instructional guides.

The inspiration of Master Communications President Selina Yoon, the Sing 'n Learn series gives children a head start in learning another language, which in turn stimulates greater mental development. "Children love to sing. It's one of the easiest ways for them to learn the words for fundamentals like greetings, colors, numbers and animals," Ms. Yoon explained.

The Sing 'n Learn series is the first of its kind to be released in the United States. Many children's recordings are sung by children, making it difficult to hear syllables. To promote communication, Master Communications used clear adult voices on the 45-minute digitally recorded tapes, slowing the tempo slightly to allow for clear enunciation.

To further enhance the learning process, Ms. Yoon chose collaborators who knew each language, music and children well. Together, they compiled songs that are popular around the world - like the "Hokey Pokey" and "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" - and songs native to each country. When possible, they used lyrics sung by children in Korea or China, like Old MacDonald, which is sung as "Uncle had a Farm Field" in Korean and "Old Mr. Wong had a Farm Field" in Chinese.

The song books and cassettes were produced, almost in their entirety, in Cincinnati, something that Ms. Yoon found surprising. "I thought I'd have to go to a larger city like New York or San Francisco to find people experienced in children's music and foreign translations," she said.

Trio Jan Jeng, Ms. Yoon's co-author on Sing 'n Learn Chinese, teaches at the University of Cincinnati's College Conservatory of Music and chairs CCM's Kindermusic program. In addition to helping with development, she sang on the Chinese tape.

Bo-Kyung Kim, an instructor at Northern Kentucky University, helped Yoon with the Korean translations. An experienced translator and author with a degree in Korean language and literature, Ms. Kim also has been published in Korea. Esther Hyun, a University of Cincinnati student pursuing a master's degree in voice, sang on the Korean version.

Rob Currens, senior composer and engineer at Cincinnati's Madison Park Productions, teaches technology in media at Raymond Walters College. He arranged and performed the music for both cassettes. Although most of the music was familiar, a few native songs he'd never heard before and some called for revisions.

Educators already are clamoring for the Sing 'n Learn series. A teacher from Philadelphia has requested permission to use it on a television program that teaches elementary Chinese.

Versions are planned for other Asian languages, including Vietnamese, Cantonese and Japanese.

Master Communications also publishes Asia For Kids, a full color, 48-page catalog that features books, cassettes, CD-ROMs, crafts and toys designed to share the rich Asian culture with children of all ethnic origins. It includes products in Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Khmer, Tagalog, Thai, Vietnamese, Lao, Hmong, Spanish and English. The catalog offers resource materials for parents and teachers.

The Sing 'n Learn sets, priced at $14.95 each, and the catalog may be obtained by calling (800) 765-5885. Orders may be faxed to (513) 563-3105 or sent by e-mail to sales@afk.com.

The Sing 'n Learn series is now available in Book & CD in Chinese, Japanese, Korean & Vietnamese.




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