Before starting to speak in our native tongue, human beings spend a year listening to everything going on around them. It is after this that we start to say our first words, wrongly of course, but the process has begun. We all remember when our children first started to speak and how we would correct them until they could say words properly. How they would have trouble with certain phrases, and would repeat the words until they knew how to say them, as well as the face they would make when knew how to say a word that they had been constantly repeating or had just learnt to say.
Many experts believe that infancy is the best age to learn a second language, as in the early years of its lifespan, the brain is like a sponge, capable of learning anything. It is in the first four years of a child's life that the most neuronal connections are being developed, when their brain is forming and this is a perfect time to absorb information and knowledge.
We all want our kids to be fluent in languages, but it is often difficult to get across to them the importance of having command of several languages, because they are still children and aren't thinking about what lies ahead in the future or may not be completely focussed on studying. Without doubt, one of the best things that they can do is learn languages during summer.
When people think about learning a language, the main thing that comes to their mind is studying, but there are other more efficient ways of learning a language, like for example playing, doing activities in the language you want to learn, songs, stories, videogames. Using these mediums, they learn the language but don't feel like they are studying. Besides this, young children have innate skills, are interested in learning new things and are fascinated by things they don't know about. Depending on their age, young children are inclined to imitate others and willing to participate in different things. The majority of them are much bolder than elder kids and don't know what it is to feel embarrassed. All these factors make them predisposed to learn a language more easily.
Many summer camps put this into practise, organising linguistic immersion camps in different languages. The whole camp develops in the language that they are learning.
There are linguistic immersion camps in English, German, Italian and French etc.
Some of them teach classes to support learning, whilst others are themed (surfing, adventure etc.), but at these camps, only the chosen language is used.
It may be that you don't think your child isn't at a high enough language level to spend 15 days speaking another language, but children can end
up surprising us and something that might seem impossible for us, for them could be a rewarding experience. It is something that most of the children aren't used to, so they will be experiencing something new and will be even more motivated.
As well as this, they can get advice about recommended resources to aid their learning, depending on their age.
Materials that are recommended for learning languages are music and videos from a very young age so that kids are familiarising themselves with the sounds of the language. When the kids grow up, it is good to use games for learning words and short phrases, so that as they grow up, they can use their computer or phone apps to play and learn vocabulary. They can also access reading books to expand their vocabulary.
Learning languages in summer at linguistic immersion summer camps is a good method for strengthening your language. If you still haven't chosen a summer camp, have a look on SoloCampamentos where you can find the ideal camp.