FAQs: ISB Summer Language Immersion

Is ISB Summer Language Immersion open to students who do not attend ISB?
Yes! Our summer Language Immersion program is open to all students who are entering Pre-K 4 through 5th Grade in the 2023-2024 school year. Please note that rising Pre-K 4 students must be 4 years old by September 1st.

My child does not speak any French or Spanish. Will s/he feel comfortable participating in the daily activities? How much progress will s/he make in the language?
We welcome children from all language backgrounds in our Language Immersion program, ranging from those who may speak the language at home to those who are being exposed to the language for the first time. Our aim is to have kids so engaged in various activities (cooking, singing, movement, arts, etc.) that they don’t realize they’re gaining familiarity with a new language. Repetition, paraphrasing, songs, and group routines are used to build children’s comfort, comprehension, and motivation in the target language. Our counselors work to provide a full immersion experience during the program, though there are circumstances that will warrant English being spoken, to ensure that all participants understand the message (for example, for issues regarding safety or social-emotional concerns). We want children to feel comfortable and cared for, so our counselors will also make sure children who do not have the language background know that they are understood even if they don’t speak the target language. Each child will also partake in our two weekly residencies (one hour per residency per week) which will be conducted in English. The amount of language progress made over the course of the program varies from student to student. In the past, those with no prior language exposure have made gains in their comprehension and expression, using simple phrases with teachers and peers and comfortably participating in classroom activities and routines, and more advanced speakers have gained more fluency with thematic vocabulary.

My child speaks some French or Spanish, but is not fluent. Will that be a problem?
Not at all! Our program is open to children of all language backgrounds. We aim to have kids so engaged in various activities (cooking, singing, movement, arts, etc.) that they don’t realize they’re building language skills. Our teachers design activities and experiences around the weekly theme, in order to systematically expose children to new vocabulary and to foster real-world use of the target language. For children who already have some exposure to the language, we find that meeting new French- or Spanish-speaking peers and teachers can be a great motivator to put their language to use.

My child will enter Pre-K 4 in the fall but does not meet the September 1st cutoff date. Can I still register?
We follow our cutoff date fairly strictly. If your child does not meet the September 1st cutoff date for rising Pre-K 4 students, please contact the ISB Summer Team (summer@isbrooklyn.org) to discuss your specific situation.

Are the counselors teachers from ISB?
Our summer team is composed of both ISB teachers and seasonal staff, many of whom work in other schools or with other educational organizations during the year. All staff have deep backgrounds with the language they work in and are passionate about language immersion.

How big are the groups at ISB Summer?
We limit our groups to no more than 18 students with 2 to 3 instructors (based on the number of kids in a group).

What is your cancellation policy?
Registrations that are canceled before May 31, 2023, will be refunded less the non-refundable registration fee of $25. Registrations that are canceled between June 1, 2023, and June 30, 2023, will be refunded less the registration fee and 25% of the program cost. No refunds will be issued after June 20, 2023. If ISB is forced to cancel a program or a session, families will be refunded all payments made including fees.

Have more questions? Please contact the ISB Summer Team at summer@isbrooklyn.org.