10 Crucial Ways to Support Your Child’s Homeschool Spanish Classes
Learning a second language is an invaluable tool. With home education on the rise, it’s never been easier to provide your child with this highly regarded ability. When I first began homeschooling my children almost 12 year ago, I understood the importance of teaching them a second language, so I started teaching homeschool Spanish to them myself. Since I had taken 4+ years of Spanish, I thought I would be sufficient as their first Spanish teacher.
However, as my children approached middle school, I quickly realized my inadequacy as their Spanish instructor. In all honesty, we didn’t get much beyond colors, numbers, body parts, everyday objects, and basic conversational words. My kids needed more. They deserved more! So, I began to search for another option.
You may be in a similar situation! Are you a homeschool family? Do you want your child to learn Spanish…really learn Spanish? Perhaps, like me, you’ve exhausted your own abilities to teach the subject. Either way, there are ten essential steps I believe you should take to ensure you find the best homeschool Spanish solution for your child!
1 – Research your homeschool Spanish options.
Children can learn Spanish from home via numerous different types of programs. Examples include individual workbooks, offline digital curriculum, online software, and live virtual instruction. And, we have tried them all! As you research your options, I believe it is beneficial to take into account your child’s primary learning style.
The three main learning styles are auditory (learning by hearing), kinesthetic (learning by doing), and visual (learning by seeing). Quite often you may find that each child exhibits a combination of learning styles, but oftentimes they tend to lean towards one particular style. How your child learns best can be directly proportional to how successful they are with whatever Spanish program you select for them. For example, an auditory learner will likely struggle with a workbook style curriculum. Likewise, a kinesthetic learner may struggle with an offline digital program.
If you are unsure of what your child’s dominant learning style is, you can easily do an internet search and find Learning Style Quizzes to help you in the process. Knowing your child’s learning style will enable you to tailor your teaching to their specific learning needs, as well as find and use a curriculum that is conducive to how they learn best.
The beauty of Homeschool Spanish Academy is that it is live, one-on-one, online instruction. That means that the teacher can cater their instruction specifically to your child and their learning needs. For example, since the instruction at HSA is one-on-one, teachers can incorporate interactive learning activities for kinesthetic learners. If your child is a visual learner, the teacher can share their screen with the child so the student can see exactly what the teacher sees as he/she is teaching the material. If your child is an auditory learner, rather than utilizing the screen share option, the child may prefer to listen as the teacher provides instruction, all while engaging in Spanish conversations.
Regardless of your child’s learning style, it suffices to say that Homeschool Spanish Academy is an excellent educational solution for all learning styles alike! With the many options for Spanish education from home and the need to address multiple learning styles, Homeschool Spanish Academy definitely rises to the top of the bunch! I encourage you to take a free trial class to confirm that Homeschool Spanish Academy will meet the needs and learning styles of your child as well!
2 – Determine the appropriate placement level.
If your child is just starting out with learning Spanish, placement is easy! Start at the beginning with level one. However, if your child has had some prior Spanish education, the free trial class is key! It was in our free trial class that we discovered that my daughter’s prior Spanish instruction was lacking and she had several gaps in her knowledge of the Spanish language. We thought she was ready for level three. But, that simply was not the case. While I was slightly disappointed to learn that her previous Spanish class (at the local high school) was not up to par, I was impressed with how well the HSA teacher was able to assess her knowledge of the Spanish language! Furthermore, I was encouraged to find out that Homeschool Spanish Academy could customize and cater the curriculum to help my daughter not only fill in the gaps, but learn and comprehend Spanish in ways she had never been able to before!
3 – Select the right teacher.
The right teacher is of paramount importance! With Homeschool Spanish Academy, there are many different native Spanish speaking instructors to select as your child’s teacher. Perhaps the teacher from your free trial (placement) class was perfect for your child. If not, I encourage you to try out multiple teachers to find the perfect instructor(s) for your child. One of the best places to start is with the teacher bios. That’s what we did!
After the free trial class, I signed my daughter up and purchased our first set of 50 minute classes. We read through all the information provided in all the teacher bios. Somehow, we managed to select the perfect teacher for my daughter! We truly couldn’t be happier with her instructor!
While my daughter likes consistently having the same teacher for each and every lesson, other students may prefer a variety of teachers. With Homeschool Spanish Academy, you get to the choice. Schedule the same teacher for every class or experience multiple teachers by utilizing a variety of instructors!
4 – Provide the optimal environment.
There are both pros and cons to home education. However, I believe that if, as a parent, you provide the proper learning environment, Homeschool Spanish Academy is an excellent way to provide your child with quality Spanish instruction from the comfort of your own home. But, that begins with providing the optimal learning environment. Students need a distraction free zone. They need a room or area in the home where they can interact with their teacher without distractions and interference.
For our family, that means using our guest room. We have a work space in the room where my daughter can easily set up her computer for class without all the distractions that are present throughout the rest of the home. Occasionally, she will utilize her bedroom, but the guest room is definitely the optimal location for her!
5 – Gather the needed supplies.
It goes without saying, but a dependable internet connection is a must have! This is in fact one of the reasons my daughter uses the guest room rather than her own bedroom for classes now. The internet reception is much better in the guest room than her bedroom!
In addition to dependable internet, my daughter has also found it helpful to have a notebook dedicated solely to her Spanish studies. She keeps a spiral notebook for note-taking and a binder for any handouts or printables she receives from her teacher or prints from the student portal (more on that later!)
Regardless of their age, students should come to class ready to learn with the required supplies. If parents or students are unsure of what additional supplies are needed, the teacher will provide the information! Being prepared for each and every class avoids wasting time and allows for maximum use of the allotted instruction time!
6 – Schedule reminders for class.
Homeschool Spanish Academy provides the flexibility that most homeschool families desire by allowing you to select the date, time, and the frequency of classes to best suit your scheduling needs. With that said, I have found that it is vital to set reminders on our phones for class time. Trust me, I speak from experience. My daughter was late to class once because I was convinced that I would remember the class times. Big mistake! However, I soon learned that Homeschool Spanish Academy has a simple solution for this. When you schedule classes on the portal, you are provided with the option to sync the classes to your calendar. Brilliant! Especially for moms like me, who would be late to everything if it weren’t for the reminders and notifications pinging my phone!
7 – Follow up with your child.
Ask questions. Get feedback. Don’t simply let your child have class with no discussion of how it went. While my daughter is quite self-sufficient when it comes to attending class and completing her assignments, I still make it a point to ask her about every single Spanish class she has. This helps me keep up with not only how she’s progressing, but with how she is feeling about her progression. We talk about upcoming quizzes or tests. We discuss fun or interesting conversations she has with her teacher. Being an open door for communication with your child is very helpful, not only for Spanish instruction, but for parenting in general!
8 – Engage in open dialogue and communicate with the teacher.
As with your child, it is important to communicate with their teacher as well! The Homeschool Spanish Academy teachers are readily accessible. I have interacted with my daughter’s teacher not only via email, but live online as well. Although her teacher regularly asks to speak to me after every test, she always emphasizes that if I have any questions at all, to not hesitate to reach out to her.
I was most impressed with our teacher when she spoke to me about my daughter’s tendency towards perfection and how hard she is on herself. That conversation alone showed me that it’s not solely about the Spanish instruction. Her teacher has taken the time to actually get to know my daughter and her tendencies. If I wasn’t in regular communication with her teacher, I never would have known just how amazingly attentive she is to my daughter’s educational needs.
9 – Utilize the portal.
Ah, the portal! This is a great place filled with lots of information! With the online portal, parents and students alike can access the coursework, print lessons, schedule classes, view grading reports and more! I highly encourage you and your child (if age permits) to become very familiar with the portal!
10 – Provide additional opportunities.
While I firmly believe that Homeschool Spanish Academy is an amazing resource for homeschool families wanting to provide their child with stellar Spanish instruction, there is one last step I would highly recommend. Don’t let Homeschool Spanish Academy be the ONLY Spanish resource that you utilize for your child. Provide additional opportunities. Yes, your child will speak Spanish with their teacher. But encourage your child to improve their fluency by conversating with someone in your community who is fluent in the Spanish language. Try watching movies or television shows in Spanish. For younger students, this could mean watching cartoons or an early learning program in Spanish. Check out books in Spanish from the library. Perhaps select books that your child is very familiar with in English so that they can easily make the translation while reading it in Spanish. While Homeschool Spanish Academy is excellent, I urge you to not let it be your child’s only experience with the language. Support their learning by providing additional opportunities to speak, read, and learn the language!
Our Thoughts on Homeschool Spanish Academy
Homeschool Spanish Academy has been an incredible resource for my daughter and I am so thankful that we discovered the program. My daughter has been taking classes with Homeschool Spanish Academy since August 2018.
During the very first class we discussed a plan for covering the material she was lacking from her Spanish 2 class at the public high school. The HSA teacher tailored the instruction and got my daughter all caught up. She then moved into the level three lessons. My daughter is currently in level 4B and is earning high school foreign language credit from home, on OUR time schedule, with a wonderful teacher! She is becoming more and more fluent in her Spanish speaking skills and more confident in her knowledge of the language. I really couldn’t have asked for a better situation! We recommend Homeschool Spanish Academy for anyone wanting to learn Spanish via live, online, one-on-one instruction from a native Spanish speaker, all from the comfort of their own home! Read more about our Spanish journey and how HSA has solved our Spanish education problems.
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- 10 Crucial Ways to Support Your Child’s Homeschool Spanish Classes - August 6, 2020