“La manzana no cae lejos del árbol.”
“The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”
It’s how we say that kids are like their parents—or they learn through their parents’ example.
Learning Spanish with your kids is one of the best examples you can set for them!
It’s a fun experience that’ll get them invested in language learning early on. If you stick to it, you’ll be giving them a gift that lasts into adulthood: bilingualism.
Did you know that children in bilingual families exhibit increased creativity and problem-solving skills? And with more than 572 million Spanish speakers worldwide, it’s logical to encourage children to learn the language. The ability to communicate with so much of the global population can only benefit young learners.
Bilingualism is good for you, too! Think of all the travel and employment doors that open to those fluent in Spanish.
So why let kids have all the fun? Learn as a family and create an apple tree filled with bright, talkative apples!
Think it’s too tough to find family Spanish lessons?
Think again! There are a lot of excellent family options for learning Spanish. Let’s check some out!
Why Study Spanish as a Family?
The benefits go beyond bilingualism. Research has shown that building a learning-focused home environment early in children’s lives sets them up for academic success. So let’s build good habits—and learn a language, all at once!
When you study as a family, it shows kids that everyone benefits from learning, including adults. And family activities—even the ordinary, everyday stuff—simply becomes more fun and interesting in another language! Suddenly, you’re not just making the bed. Instead, hacemos las camas (we make the beds) while learning how to name the pillows, blankets and the other things that make up the morning routine.
Learning Spanish together as a family can also help the language feel more relevant to your kids (and to you!). You’ll get to use it in real-world applications like ordering in restaurants or watching fun Spanish movies. Not only does this motivate the learning process for everyone, but it also instills a respect for language and culture that’ll only help to widen kids’ perspectives as they grow.
Become a Bilingual Family! 8 Fun Spanish Lesson Resources for Your Family
At-home Spanish Lessons
Learning a language at home can be dynamic, interactive and immersive. That’s right—incorporating these study resources into your family Spanish program can turn home sweet home into Spanish language central!
“Super Spanish” is sure to pull both adults and children alike into the action. It’s a four-disc DVD set that features fun skits and a kid-friendly format to teach Spanish.
The basics of pronunciation and foundational vocabulary are covered early on. Then things progress to harder material like irregular verbs and challenging grammar rules are tackled.
Interactive quizzes test learning after every chapter so it allows every member of the family to gauge their learning.
“52 Weeks of Family Spanish”
“52 Weeks of Family Spanish” is a structured home-study program in book form. It provides a year’s worth of weekly lessons, games and activities and is designed for family participation.
The topics are basic, so even young learners can be readily engaged. The lessons and activities are meant to be an integral part of your family’s daily life. They’re applicable to ordinary situations like family mealtime or describing objects in the home, so there should be lots of teachable moments for the whole family. It’s a good way to bring Spanish to your home with a no-pressure approach.
Small lessons begin with basic vocabulary before progressing to grammar and more difficult issues. There are also cultural notes in the book so it’s a super way for everyone to learn more about our global neighbors!
KidsSpeak Spanish is software designed for “kids of all ages” so it’s perfect for family Spanish lessons.
Everyone will benefit from learning over 700 Spanish words and phrases. The vocabulary potential alone is enough to entice any learner to come to the table!
Teaching through animation, interactive games, puzzles and songs, this software can help a family reach a basic conversational level. It’s designed by educators using a home-immersion approach, so your family can expect to learn naturally and develop well-rounded Spanish skills. There are also printable activities for practice anytime, anywhere.
Spanish Learning Videos
Most of us watch at least some TV en casa (at home). That little habit makes it a snap to bring Spanish lessons to the family!
Even if you don’t live near native Spanish-speakers, your family can have an immersive Spanish learning experience with FluentU.
There are also tailor-made flashcards and quizzes to help you remember what you’ve learned after you’re done watching. It’s an awesome way to actively build your Spanish skills while absorbing the language as native speakers really use it!
The videos are organized by genre and learning level, so it’s easy to find ones that work for you and the kids. Young learners will enjoy this cute animated song while you’ll love taking a virtual trip to a Spanish soccer game. You can keep exploring the full video library for free with a FluentU trial!
HeyKids videos are made for children, but don’t kid yourself—adults will learn from them, too. They’re colorful and amusing. The characters and storylines are engaging so prepare to watch for a while once they hit the screen.
The subjects they tackle are basic—just the sort of material beginning learners need to form a solid Spanish foundation.
Muzzy is a popular language learning program put out by the BBC. Along with the classic TV show that teaches Spanish through fun stories, Muzzy now also offers an online learning website, hundreds of games, sing-alongs and more. That’s a lot of material and honestly, it does a great job of teaching even young children how to speak Spanish.
Again, this is geared toward kids but it’s perfect for adults, also.
The songs are simple and easy to remember so family sing-alongs are a must! The storylines are uncomplicated but bring Spanish vocabulary to life. The dialogue models Spanish pronunciation and the characters themselves are flashy enough to keep every family member’s attention.
Family Lessons to Take Abroad
If you’re able to do so, pack the whole family’s bags for a real-life immersion experience! I know it can sound overwhelming, but there are many places that offer family programs and they’re fully prepared to make the experience a good one for your family.
There’s no way around it. Being surrounded by a foreign language and culture puts anyone on the fast-track to language acquisition.
Family immersion programs are a combination of coursework and cultural activities so there’s an equal measure of work and play.
So… family vacation, anyone? There are a few outstanding spots for just such an adventure!
TLCdénia has a number of family learning programs in Spain. Their programs for adults and children over the age of five feature Spanish language lessons as well as family-friendly cultural and athletic activities.
Options for family study are available year round, although programs do vary by season. One option for children aged eight to 13 who are in attendance during the summer months is sailing lessons. They’ll spend some time in the classroom and some outdoors, putting Spanish to use while learning to sail!
Adults take language lessons separate from their children but the whole immersive experience gives ample time after lessons for the family to practice what they’ve learned together.
Accommodations vary and include hotels, apartments or homestays with a local family.
If your family can’t just pack up and head to Spain, there’s good news! TLCdénia offers family lessons online so it’s possible to bring their Spanish courses right into your own home!
ISLS (Institute for Spanish Language Studies)
The Institute for Spanish Language Studies, located on several campuses in Costa Rica, has some super options for family learning.
They have a children’s immersion program that accepts kids from eight to 13. Children are placed in classes according to age and language level, so while the adults are taking adult-level courses, the kids are learning, too!
They also have a kindergarten program that accepts children as young as 18 months. It’s a half-day program that teaches the young learners in an unstructured immersive environment while their parents attend adult language classes.
Learning starts at an early age so families learning Spanish together is a win-win situation. The entire family will absorb the language, explore interesting cultures and maybe even get the vacation of a lifetime!
You’ll definitely cultivate strong family roots, grow brilliant fruit—and have fun!
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