While summer can definitely be an exciting break, it also comes with a lot of free time that requires parents to use some creativity in order to keep their children busy and entertained.
If you're working on practicing a second language with your children at home, summer also means plenty of time for extra language practice! Language learning can most definitely be fun and entertaining, especially when it’s done while participating in an exciting summer activity that the whole family can enjoy together.
For this blog post, we’ve partnered with our friends at Binibi who make bilingual sound books for kids to practice Spanish. We’ve come up with a list of five activities to keep your bilingual child busy practicing Spanish while having fun! These exciting activities will help make the most of extra time this summer and help reinforce that language learning is enjoyable.
Take your child to the zoo or farm
Children love a good trip to the zoo or farm where they can see some of their favorite animals, but this can also mean an opportunity to practice new Spanish words such as animal names, their colors and action verbs describing what they’re doing. Binibi’s bilingual sound book La Granja is the perfect language learning tool to practice animal names before you head out, and you can even take it with you to the zoo or farm. Try finding as many animals from the book as possible for a fun challenge. Also, Binibi’s online resources include coloring sheets for both that can be used to keep your little one happy on the car ride, while also providing additional time for them to practice animal names before seeing them in person.
Some at home downtime is inevitable, even during hectic and activity-filled summer days. Squeezing in some bilingual reading time whenever possible is an amazing way to get your child practicing Spanish. The more exposure to their second language, the more proficient they will become, so practice is key! When you throw in fun sounds and songs for reading time, along with vibrant illustrations and parent-child interaction, it facilitates the learning process and helps your little learner make associations between words, sounds and images. Reading aloud also helps with picking up on rhyme and repetition that help with language learning. You can find Binibi’s collection of children’s bilingual books on our site for perfect summer addition to your child’s bookshelf!
Movie night in the target language
Movie nights are always a hit! Throw in some fun, delicious snacks along with language learning to really take this plan to the next level! How do you add language learning to movie night? It’s simple–just play the movie in your child’s second language! This is great exposure that your child will consider to be a treat, all while absorbing new vocabulary words and hearing them in an exciting context. The more interested they are, the more likely they are to associate these new words with what they are watching and remember them!
Bilingual lemonade or cookie stand
It’s never too early to show your little one the value of earning money through hard work, especially when it means you can introduce new words to them in the target language. Building a lemonade or cookie stand is not only fun for kids as they prepare the goods and await their customers with excitement, but also a great way to introduce new words and numbers in the target language. You can help your child count things in the second language, like the items the customer requests, the money they earn, the amount of sales they had, or the amount of goodies they have left to sell. In addition, you can label your stand with words in the target language and practice them ahead of time for your child to use when interacting with customers. This will leave you with more than just money at the end of the activity, so it’s a win-win!
Bilingual Summer Fun Checklist
Creating a bilingual “Summer Fun Checklist” that lists your child’s dream activities or summer goals is a super exciting way for little ones to check off their ideal summer activities one by one while also practicing their second language. Include realistic activities that you can actually take your child to and turn it into a game where you encourage your child to master the name of the activity or goal in the target language before you go do it. As you check goals off your list, you can go over them again and discuss what their favorite part of the activity was! We hope you enjoy these activities and find them helpful for continuing your bilingualism journey during summer!
This blog series is powered by Binibi, an education company dedicated to promoting bilingualism at the earliest ages. Binibi makes bilingual sound books for children ages 0-5 that are designed for parents to have a fun and easy way to introduce a second language at home, from day one. Binibi is dedicated to creating reading experiences that are both entertaining and educational, and to encouraging parents and caregivers to spend time with their babies through reading together.