Travel Magazine

Family Spanish Immersion Program: My Biggest Fears

By Sarah Fazendin @aweekatthebeach
Family Spanish Immersion Program: My Biggest Fears

This summer, my family will embark on an epic adventure through Central America. We?ll cover most of Costa Rica, dip into Panama and end this journey with a week in Nicaragua.

While we're definitely a well-traveled family, this is the biggest trip we've taken to date as a family. Our youngest is four, and has reached an age where we can now be a bit more mobile and aggressive in our travel.

Family Spanish Immersion Program: My Biggest Fears

And recently, after a wonderful, relaxing week on the beach in Mexico, we decided that it's in fact time to take our travels up a notch. It's time to travel further, explore more deeply and push ourselves out of our comfort zone a little.

We recently decided to add in a family Spanish immersion program into our Central America itinerary. Now, this is WAY out of our comfort zone. When I proposed it to my husband, he wasn't exactly enthusiastic about the idea. But when I mentioned it to my kids, they both thought it was a great idea.

And their enthusiasm is what sealed the deal for us.

I think this language immersion experience will be an incredibly rewarding way to show the kids a different culture. After spending time in the home of a local Costa Rican family, I hope they will come away with an idea of the cultural differences that exist.

Family Spanish Immersion Program: My Biggest Fears

So now that we've decided to go ahead with the experience, I?m equal parts excited and anxious. As we prepare for our family Spanish immersion program in Costa Rica this summer, here are the things that I'm most worried about.

I'm afraid the kids will be bored.

I'm worried that the kids won't be fully engaged. In a classic school setting, they may enjoy the first few hours, but have a hard time hanging on for a full day of school.

I'm hoping there is plenty of experiential learning opportunities and fun activities built in to break up the day.

I'm afraid we (I!) won't really learn that much.

My Spanish is probably the most limited among my family. Everyone but me has had formal instruction. It might seem obvious, but I really hope we actually learn something during this experience.

I have no idea what to expect with our homestay experience.

Unlike booking a hotel, there is no web site to scour with photos of the house, sleeping rooms or bathrooms. Especially when traveling with kids, I like to see where we're going to be spending the night well in advance.

Family Spanish Immersion Program: My Biggest Fears

I think it's important to document my fears as we prepare for this experience. I've had to let go of control and am simply looking forward to this experience with the same wide-eyed wonder as my children. Going through something like this together is a pretty awesome opportunity, and I will continue to share my fears and expectations with you as we prepare for our Spanish language immersion program this summer!

Have you done a family Spanish immersion program? I?d love to hear about it and any tips you may have as well! Leave me a comment below.

Family Spanish Immersion Program: My Biggest Fears

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