20 Ways to Homeschool Spanish as a Non-Native Speaker
Would you like to homeschool Spanish but don’t yet feel confident to do it on your own?
Don’t worry if Spanish isn’t your first language. Whether you’re a lifelong Spanish learner or just starting out, you can facilitate this language to your child.
In this article, you’ll uncover 20 easy ways to homeschool Spanish and watch your child blossom into a happy language learner!
How To Homeschool Spanish
To learn any language is a matter of output—what you’re able to produce in the target language—and input—what you’re able to receive from the target language in terms of comprehension. Homeschooling Spanish requires that you focus on these two elements organized into four main skills:
- Speaking (output)
- Writing (output)
- Listening (input)
- Reading (input)
Surprisingly, the order in which you present these four skills is irrelevant. Meanwhile, the level of proficiency that your or your child may reach is dependent on several factors, including:
- Learning style
Add these elements to your homeschool schedule and use the tips below to seamlessly integrate them into your lessons.
In the list below, feel free to skip to the skill you’re most interested in covering at home with your children. If you’re considering the option of supplemental Spanish education to help you teach your child Spanish at home, check out our expert-certified, K-12 Spanish classes for kids at Homeschool Spanish Academy!
20 Ways To Successfully Homeschool Spanish
Here are some ways to homeschool Spanish, while ensuring balance and fun.
Homeschool Spanish Skill: Speaking
Some language teaching methods prioritize speaking to facilitate communication and social connection. If this is also your preference, how can you help your child speak in Spanish? Here are five powerful ideas to get you started.
1. Hire a Tutor
1-on-1 classes are important in language acquisition, especially when they’re flexible and adapted to the student’s level and learning style. If you live in the U.S., it may be easy for your to find a local, Spanish-speaking tutor.
In the event that you can’t find a tutor in your area, you have plenty of online options. Check out our list of Top Cost-Effective Spanish Classes for Kids where you can compare and contrast some of the best options on the internet.
You may also want to note that Homeschool Spanish Academy was voted “Best for School Tutoring” by Parents.com thanks to our expert-certified, K-12 curriculum that’s, “focused on helping children speak and understand Spanish, and because Homeschool Spanish Academy is accredited, high school students can earn school credit after completing one semester.” Learn more about our programs here!
2. Try Out Different Online Spanish Schools
Seek out free trial lessons offered by online Spanish schools to see which environment and methodology work best for you and your child. Most of the Top Online Spanish Schools for Kids offer free trials to give you a solid sneak peek of the learning experience they provide before you commit to a package of classes.
3. Get an Au-pair
I was lucky to have dinner with Rosan Bosch, one of the most famous architects of educational spaces that empower learning, and we had an interesting chat on au-pairs.
She remembered how important au-pairs were for her family to help her kids speak Dutch.
Au pairs are not teachers, but finding a Spanish-speaking au pair will give your child an exciting new height of motivation to learn the language.
Au pairs are like a combination of a nanny and a relative, with whom your child is likely to create an emotional bond. The best part? Emotions are essential for efficient and long-lasting language learning!
4. Plan Your Vacation to a Spanish-Speaking Country
If you’re busy dreaming of your upcoming vacation plans, it might be time to consider spending a week in Cancún or another Spanish-speaking country, like Guatemala.
This real-life, direct experience empowers your child to understand the relevance of the target language while offering them plenty of opportunities to hear and use the language in a meaningful context.
The fact is, this immediate type of language immersion provides the most powerful environment for daily practice and it’s crucial for fueling ongoing motivation.
Here are 21 countries to choose from!
5. Participate in a Student Exchange
Did you know that you can host a foreign exchange student in your house through EF Foundation for Foreign Study?
Hosting a student from a Spanish-speaking country not only creates an incredible opportunity for your child to use the target language, but also empowers them to build an empathy-strengthening relationship with a child from another culture.
The big bonus? Having an exchange student in your home reveals to your child the possibility that they also could be an exchange student in a Spanish-speaking country in the future! Now that’s a great motivator.
Hear Your Child Speak Spanish With Our Teachers at Homeschool Spanish Academy! Your Free Trial Class Is Waiting ➡️
Homeschool Spanish Skill: Writing
Writing is a skill relatively easy to homeschool. You can do some writing exercises using textbooks and apps and mix them with free practice by writing a journal or creating a blog.
When your kid feels stronger with their writing skills, they can practice with a pen pal.
6. Use Textbooks
Seriously, don’t underestimate a good textbook!
Good language textbooks provide good quality grammar, vocabulary, listening, and writing material.
They’re also useful when you need to convert the language you’re studying into a high school credit at a specific level and add it later to your homeschool high school transcript.
7. Improve Their Vocabulary with Apps and Games
You need words to construct written text, and there is no funnier way to acquire them than through games and apps.
There are so many apps and online games on the market that I’m sure you’ll find something that adapts to your needs.
Find Your Favorites: 20 Best Apps to Learn Spanish on Your Own
8. Post in Spanish
Do you have an Instagram account for homeschooling? You can invite your child to post in Spanish.
Texts in Instagram posts are not long or overcomplicated in terms of grammar structures. Also, getting likes from Spanish-speaking fans can motivate your kid.
9. Use a Journal
I’m a big fan of journaling with your kid, as a very special bonding experience. And if you can do it in Spanish, that’s even better!
It can be something as simple as a drawing or a picture with an Instax camera. Then you can label it in Spanish using a word, sentence, or a short text.
You can also use experience books. For example, we use The Adventure Challenge and Family Edition, and our daughters often label our adventures in Spanish.
10. Get a Penpal
Why not connect with another kid in a different country, and talk with them in a non-chat format?
Writing longer emails is a good practice and offers cultural enrichment to both parties. I recommend the Global Penfriends website for a safe, secure, and family-friendly experience.
You can even try snail mail with them and exchange local candies.
Homeschool Spanish Skill: Listening Comprehension
This is a tricky skill to hone, and there are no shortcuts.
Your child will need hours of practice. Only this way can you help them foster an understanding of native Spanish speakers who tend to blend words into what seems like a single continuous sound.
11. Watch Movies in Spanish
Change the language to Spanish on the streaming services you’re using, and you’ll get more options for movies and shows in Spanish.
Start with watching short episodes of a series your kid already knows—in Spanish and with subtitles.
They will pick up new vocabulary and expressions and develop their comprehension skills.
You might like: 15 Good Family Movies in Spanish to Watch on Netflix
12. Subscribe to Spanish YouTube Channels
There are programs, songs, cartoons, movies for kids of all ages, and interesting YouTubers for older kids and teens.
Subscribe to a channel that explores your child’s hobbies to get extra motivation.
You might like: 8 YouTube Channels With Spanish Stories and Read-Alouds for Kids
13. Get Familiar with Spanish Podcasts
You can listen to podcasts in your car while driving your child for extracurriculars. There’s no visual distraction, and your kid works only on oral comprehension.
You can find podcasts that mix English with Spanish and some that offer purely Spanish content.
You might like: 50 Best Spanish Podcasts for Bilingual Kids
14. Sing Spanish Songs
Everybody loves songs. Little kids adore singing and dancing, and teenagers connect with lyrics on a different level.
You can combine listening to songs with a Lyrics Training app to work on their vocabulary simultaneously.
15. Listen to Spanish Audiobooks
Audiobooks complement Spanish reading.
You can read a book one night and then listen to the same chapter the next day.
Epic! offers books that your child can read or listen to.
For more information, see The Importance of Listening With Purpose: How To Improve Spanish Listening and 25+ Resources to Promote Spanish Listening Practice for Kids.
Homeschool Spanish Skill: Reading
If your child reads a lot in their mother tongue, reading in Spanish is a matter of time. Reading improves your language skills in a non-stressful way.
16. Buy Many Picture Books
It’s a good idea to start with picture books. Then, even beginner learners can grab the main story based on illustrations and look for words they already know.
Texts in comic books are short and use modern language that appeals to younger readers.
17. Order Magazines
There are many thematic magazines in Spanish directed to kids that you can order online or by mail. If your kid has a specific hobby, look for magazines in their area of interest.
You can find shorter texts and lots of illustrative images in magazines.
Choose your favorite: 10 Engaging Spanish Magazines for Kids
18. Follow Spanish-speaking Kid Influencers
Kids like social media and scrolling through posts.
Use this addiction and subscribe to Spanish-speaking Instagrammers. Images are accompanied by short texts that your kids will want to understand.
My kids love Dana Explora, who has a Youtube channel. But they also like going through her posts on Instagram.
They may easily find other kids who post about games, new toys, cooking, and other topics.
19. Download Free E-books
You don’t have to spend a fortune on Amazon to get your kid books in Spanish.
Many websites offer free books in pdf format you can download for free.
Books expose your children to new words that will expand their vocabulary in a meaningful way.
You might like: 15 Fun Children’s Spanish Books With Free PDF Download
20. Get Reading Apps
Reading with apps is fun and can be an excellent way to turn kids into readers too.
You can find apps that teach Spanish. Others teach Spanish through reading specifically. And others still offer unlimited access to Spanish books such as Epic!
You might like: Top 5 Reading Apps to Improve Your Reading Skills in Spanish
Ready To Homeschool Spanish?
In conclusion, homeschooling Spanish can be a challenging and rewarding experience for both you and your child. However, it is possible to successfully teach Spanish even if it is not your first language. With the help of the 20 easy methods outlined in this article, you can foster your child’s love for the Spanish language and watch them thrive as a language learner.
Join one of the 40,000 classes that we teach each month and you can experience results like these…
“This is the best way for your kid to learn Spanish. It’s one-on-one, taught by native Spanish speakers, and uses a curriculum.”
– Sharon K, Parent of 3
“It’s a great way to learn Spanish, from native Spanish speakers in a 1-on-1 environment. It’s been fairly easy to schedule classes around my daughter’s other classes. The best value for us has been ordering multiple classes at a time. All the instructors have been great!”
– Cindy D, Parent of 3
“HSA offers very affordable, quality, one on one classes with a native speaker. My son has greatly benefited from taking classes. We have seen his confidence increase as well as his pronunciation improve, because he learns from a native Spanish speaker. HSA has quick, personal customer service. Our family has been very pleased with our experience so far!”
– Erica P. Parent of 1
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