Our integrated approach specifically engages the child in lively and creative activities to enhance developmentally appropriate skills in a foreign language.
Classes are activity-based, full language immersion classes that will engage students in a circle of interesting and age-appropriate activities and experiments. Instruction is experiential and hands on with a focus on children’s individual needs and interests. We help children to recognize and do their personal best to grow as happy learners.
At LLS children are encouraged to speak French or Italian through captivating workshops designed to both educate and entertain. All of our classes are designed to allow children’s hands, minds and emotions to be active in a safe and supportive environment. At LLS, it is our goal to help lay a foundation for the long term appreciation of learning a foreign language, revealing the rich cultural and linguistic wonders that French and Italian have to offer.
We aim to to serve any family that values the importance of foreign languages and intercultural understanding, to foster enthusiasm for learning a second or third language, and to support parents who wish to raise their children with more than one native language, in order to maintain and strengthen a multicultural identity and heritage.
At LLS children enable to develop their potential and skills to the fullest extent, while allowing them to do so at an individual pace.
The Language and Laughter Studio is a place not only for our children to participate and enjoy language and culture, but a place for us to come together as a community and bring to life the heritage of our extended cultures. Learning language is not just about speaking, but about connecting to the cultures and traditions they come from.
Instruction is experiential and hands on with a focus on children’s individual needs and interests.
- We use games, mimes, songs, arts and crafts, music, movement, theater and visual aids.
- Repetition is an important part of the learning process.
- The program is interactive to make learning a language a pleasant and rewarding experience.
- We foster the collaboration between children by enabling them to participate in small group work and whole group discussions.
- We provide a place where their enthusiasm for discovery is challenged and their natural curiosities are focused into a context of learning about cultures, languages, and the world.
All of our teachers at LLS are native speakers and specialized in their field. Students learn from caring and supportive early childhood educators who possess strong backgrounds in the arts. We collaborate with professional and brilliant early childhood educators, composers, musicians, and artists dedicated to create unique programs designed to stimulate inquiry-based learning, concept formation and creativity.
Pascale Setbon, founder of LLS, believes that children learn by making sense of their world and their experiences. She has seen that children learn best through first hand experiences with people and materials. With a deep belief in the remarkable capabilities of each child, the dedicated teachers encourage the children to hear, understand and speak a second or a third language with joy and pride.
Pascale Setbon – Founder
Pascale Setbon moved to the United States from France twenty years ago with one of her children and the hope that he would remain connected to her French culture. She quickly became aware of the demand for children to be raised bilingually in order to conserve relationships with their various cultures and after eight years of teaching, she finally opened her own school.
Pascale attended La Sorbonne where she earned a BA in Management and an MA in Marketing. Pascale relocated with her family to New York in 1997, where she experienced great difficulty in finding bilingual educational programs for her two young children. She soon found that there were many families in the same situation who were looking for a program to support their desire to maintain and strengthen a multicultural identity and heritage. Pascale decided to explore this dilemma by attending several language workshops and conferences given by Bank Street College, the Board of Education, and other accredited institutes. After four years of dedicated research and studies, Pascale was ready to share with others what she had learned. She helped to develop the French Playgroups curriculum at the International School of Brooklyn and for two years worked at the French Institute in Manhattan. In 2005 Pascale launched her own language-diverse learning program, L’isle Aux Enfants at the fledgling Language and Laughter Studio (LLS). LLS has become a full-fledged learning center for early bilingual education. Complementing tacit experiential language acquisition with focused directives, classes at LLS help to facilitate bilingualism where children learn to hear, understand, and speak foreign languages with confidence and pride.
A French native, Marthe graduated in law, but soon she discovered her true passion for education and working with children while volunteering abroad in English-speaking countries with various organizations. Marthe decided to return to France to pursue her Masters degree in Education with a focus on immersion and bilingual education. Her research examining the difficulties children can encounter in immersion programs has been published in France.
Because of her passion and interest in working with young children, Marthe has worked in many primary schools in France. She also worked in French schools abroad in Russia (Ecole française Dumas – Moscou), Germany (Ecole française Voltaire – Berlin), Georgia (Ecole française du Caucase -Tbilissi) and Italy (Ecole française Chateaubriand – Rome), advising on different resources and methods to help the non-francophone children to not only learn the language, but follow a full curriculum in French.
Marthe’s training and background offer a strong educational foundation to Francophone and to Anglophone (and other) students with the most advanced approaches for developing language-speaking skills.
Sophie is a teacher from Lyon, France. Her first international experience was coming to the United States as a teenager, where she attended an American High School, and discovered the difficulties of learning a new language and culture. This experience abroad inspired her to follow an educational career and to work with children who live in a bilingual environment.
After receiving her Master degree in Education from France, she pursued her interest in teaching children from different countries and cultures. She has experienced teaching in French, English and Spanish, by working in a bilingual school in Belgium (Athénée Royale – Gembloux) and in an indigenous school in Ecuador (Escuela Transito Amaguaña – Quito). She also worked in an American kindergarten during her studies abroad in Pennsylvania.
When Sophie arrived in New-York, she taught at the FIAF (French Institute Alliance Francaise) of Manhattan and then worked at the LFNY (Lycee Francais of New York) where she was in charge of organizing activities for the After School Care Program. In addition to her full time jobs, Sophie has and is still tutoring children of the LFNY. Sophie is a dedicated teacher, enthusiastic and motivated with strong communication skills, who promotes the children’s interest in learning by discovering the world through meaningful experiences.
Emilie Weibel is a bilingual vocalist and song-writer born in Switzerland. She started music and singing at five years old in her home country.
Emilie has a degree in Performing Arts at the City College of New York. She can be heard performing in many venues in New York with different projects from Jazz to Electro and Pop. She also has been teaching music to children for 5 years in South of France, Switzerland and in New York.
She loves to share her passion with children. Her repertoire includes her original songs, classic children songs or specific comptines that help the children to learn the language in a natural and fun way.
Born and raised in Milano, Italy, Serena moved to Brooklyn, New York, with her family in 2006. Since her arrival, she has worked with young children at various schools, including the Rudolf Steiner School in Manhattan.
She enjoys leading children’s creative workshops and engages her attentive audience with animated short stories and illustrations. Her ateliers or laboratori are filled with laughter, happy faces and fingers covered in paint!
Moving to New York with two young children who spoke only Italian, she has had an inspiring experience raising them bilingual. So when in 2015 she joined LLS, she felt blessed to be able to combine her passion for creativity with her interest for bilingual education.
Lauren received her B.A. in French and theatre from Muhlenberg College. She started learning French in middle school, when she had the opportunity to begin to study a language. Her love of language motivated her to continue to study the French language and culture throughout high school and college. In college, her passion for language also led her to study other aspects of linguistics and bilingualism. She has completed psycholinguistic research on the process of switching between speaking multiple languages and has presented this research at the Language, Linguistics, and Life Conference at Temple University. Lauren studied abroad in a French immersion program in Aix-en-Provence, France. While studying abroad, she received an award for her excellence in French. She was also recognized for her achievement in French by Phi Sigma Iota, the National Language Honors Society, at Muhlenberg. Previously, Lauren has worked for Middlebury Monterey Language Academy’s French immersion program.
Elise studied Information Management and Communication in Paris. She worked in Paris Descartes University Department for Career Guidance, then moved to Germany and became an Account Manager in online marketing.
Successive international moves with young children allowed her to become an educated advocate of bilingual education. A lover of languages, she is a psychology enthusiast as well, interested in supporting active education, the awareness of “neurodiversity”, and positive psychology in France. She worked as an independent translator and taught French to children and adults before joining The Language and Laughter Studio.
Elise enjoyed studying and working in the arts field in her youth. She believes that a workplace valuing creativity leads people to flourish and succeed, children included. She loves how the search for excellence and high expectations for the students, typical of a French school, meet a supportive and child-friendly environment at LLS.
Cédric Chaudré grew up in the North-East of France. He graduated in Education and taught in middle schools in France.
He moved to Paris where he was employed as an Automatic Speech Recognition Software Analyst in a very international team. This experience unveiled his interest in language acquisition and Cédric decided to pursue a Master degree in applied linguistics where he researched how mobile technologies can improve language acquisition.
After teaching a few more years in language institutes in Paris, Cedric moved to New York where he enjoys teaching French in the After-school program of dual language schools.
Specialized in Art performances, production and creativity, Aurélie Harp is a versatile artist, producer and acting teacher who just moved back to Brooklyn. She graduated from Sciences-Po Paris with a BA in History and a Master in Marketing, and she is now completing a degree in Teaching French as a foreign language (DAEFLE). She worked a few years in advertising before starting her acting career in Paris and London. She loves the stage and theater includes Winter under the table by R. Topor, Scorched by W. Mouawad, Eclipsed, the story of the Magdalena’s sisters, Mme Antoine, the story of Queen Marie-Antoinette, Carmen… She believes in ongoing training to improve her craft and has been participating for over 10 years in Jack Waltzer’s Masterclass, member of the Actors Studio. She is also a member of NY Lab, a creative collective and incubator for creative projects. She is also a playwright starting her third play and a voice-over talent, she recently played “Jargonaise”, the French bug, in a TV show on the BBC children program). Aurélie is a mother of two and loves interacting with children.