Wednesday, July 20, 2005
7 News Features: Play & Say
Remember summertime as a kid? Lounging around, letting your education slide. Well those days are officially over. Today, children are living it up learning a second language. Here's Lynn Martinez with more in tonight's special assignment report.
WSVN--We've heard of sports camps and music camps, so why not spanish camp? This summer, youngsters from all over south florida are at a place where you can play and say. An enviroment with all the traditional memories minus one exception - no english allowed.
Teacher: "Go ahead Jimmy."
Boy at camp: "What I did on my summer vacation...I went to the pool, shot some hoops, played videogames and hable espanol."
Teacher: "Hablaste espanol?"
That's right...while your child may have been splishing and splashing this summer, hundreds of others have been hablando espanol.
Merida Talavera from Camp N: "They realize how important it is to learn a second language and how fun it is to do it during the summer where theres no book no grades."
This is Camp N at the University of Miami in Coral Gables. Spanish teachers, Merida Talavera and Beatriz Cosculluela opened the camp in the hopes kids could.
Girl at camp: "Aprender."
Boy at camp: "Practicar."
Boy at camp: "Espanol."
From salsa and merengue dance lessons...To singing songs...To arts and crafts... Daily activities are done in spanish, and the kids don't even fight it.
Veronica Sanchez: "Here they have a lot of fun things and it helps you learn spanish because they make it so much fun."
Chelsea Blanco: "I like talking in spanish. It's a fun way to practice what you already know."
Merida Talavera: "If there is one thing that the kids could take from Camp N during the summer would be that learning spanish could be fun."
A lesson that is also applied at Camp Lingua in Davie. Here, kids not only get geography and grammar lessons, they also immerse themselves in the culture.
Andreina Ojeda from Lingua Language Center: "It's very important when they learn a language, to learn about the culture of the country where that language is spoken."
The children have so much fun learning, they even get to be part of a real Mexican fiesta.
Andreina Ojera from Camp Lingua: "They're having a ball. They're just learning the language by having fun, which is the good thing."
Camper Jonathan Gutierrez: "Well I was talking too much English at home, I was barely talking any Spanish, but then when I came here I was talking alot of Spanish."
And if you ask the parents, playing and saying pays off.
Parent Janine Sanchez: "I definitely see a difference as the summer goes on in the way they're able to speak and think and read in spanish, it makes a big difference."
Proof once and for all, learning can be.
Boy at camp: "Divertido."
Especially when it's en espanol.
Both camps run all summer long. The Lingua Language Center also has an intense boot camp for adults, who want to learn the spanish language.
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