FAQs

Q?Is there a chance that my child will feel insecure or frustrated in the immersion environment?
A.

The current research on this topic is very reassuring. In their article So You Want Your Child to Learn French, Weber and Tardif report: “During the first days of school, we carefully observed both the regular and immersion students with some of parents’ most often voiced concerns in mind. However, contrary to our expectations, the second-language element did not really seem to be a major source of frustration or difficulty for the children. The video recordings and interviews clearly show that the children were able to construct much meaning from the immersion situation even at the beginning of the year. Many of the children for example, offered the following explanations of how they came to understand the teacher’s French: “I just listen very hard and my brain figures it out,” “I think of a word in English it sounds like,” and “ I ask the teacher.” (pp. 55-60)

Q?Will a Second Language Interfere With My Child’s English Ability?
A.

In most cases, learning another language actually enhances a child’s English ability. Children can learn much about English by learning the structure of other languages. Common vocabulary also helps children learn the meaning of new words in English. Experimental studies have shown that no long-term delay in native English language development occurs between children participating in second language immersion classes and those schooled exclusively in English.

Q?Is immersion an appropriate choice for all children?
A.

Research findings on the effectiveness of immersion education hold true for a wide range of students, including those from diverse socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds (Genesee , 1992).

As is sometimes purported, these programs are not intended exclusively for middle- and upper-class Anglo families. In fact, some recent research indicates that immersion may be an effective program model for children who speak a language other than English or the immersion language at home (deCourcy, Warren, & Burston, 2002). It is hypothesized that these learners may benefit from a leveling-of-the-playing-field effect that occurs when all of the students in the class are functioning in a second language. Students who are not native speakers of English are able to be on par with their native-English-speaking peers and enjoy the same kinds of success with learning.

There are, however, many unanswered questions concerning the suitability of language immersion for children with language-based learning disabilities. Research on this topic is scant. Some researchers and immersion practitioners argue that children whose first language acquisition is seriously delayed or who struggle with auditory discrimination skills may be overtaxed in a language immersion program (see review in Genesee , 1992). Previously identified language-processing challenges should be considered prior to enrolling a child in an immersion program. Still, many children with mild learning disabilities, knowledgeable teachers, and supportive families can and do achieve well in immersion programs and develop proficiency in a second language. Parents and educators need not assume that learning in two languages will overtax these children. In fact, many instructional techniques used in immersion are similar to techniques recommended for struggling learners. Understanding how to make language immersion classrooms more inclusive for a broader spectrum of learners is one of many topics of interest to immersion educators.

Q?How will learning other subjects in a second language affect my child’s English language and literacy development?
A.

Many parents are initially fearful that immersion may have a negative impact on their child’s English language development. But research consistently finds that the immersion experience actually enhances English language development (Cloud, Genesee , & Hamayan, 2000). It should be noted that full immersion students’ English development may lag temporarily in reading, word knowledge, and spelling while instruction is occurring exclusively in the immersion language. However, after a year or two of instruction in English language arts, this discrepancy disappears ( Genesee , 1987). It is important for parents to understand that this lag is temporary and to be expected.

It is assumed that immersion students will have consistent exposure to and support for English at home and in the community. Parents need to provide their children with experiences that will enhance their English language and literacy development. For example, they should read to their children every day and involve them in games and activities that complement their classroom learning. Research shows that the stronger the development of the native language, the greater the proficiency in the immersion language, so children who enter an immersion program with a strong base in English will succeed more easily than those whose English skills are not as strong.

Q?There are too many camp options and I don’t know what to select. Can you help me creating a special camp schedule for my children?
A.

Yes, we can customize your child’s summer camp schedule. Just give us your child’s age, schedule and interests (i.e: Does he/she want a combination of Spanish, Art, Science & Technology  camps? or only  Spanish/Art & Science?) and we will email you back a customized summer camp schedule specially for your child.

Please email camp@YPWkids.com with the following information:
- Campers full name
- Date of birth
- Schedule – dates available for camps -
- Camper’s interest

Q?What does YPW stand for?
A.

Young Peoples Workshops

Q?What is Young Peoples Workshops?
A.

Young Peoples Workshops (YPW) is an exciting place for Young People to experience “intelligent
fun”. We offer the following services:

a. Spanish Immersion School for infants to kindergarten and after school age children

b. Spanish Workshops

c. Science, Technology & Math workshops in English

d. Camps –Over 28 varieties in Art, Science & Technology, Math and Spanish – Both in English & Spanish

e. Spanish Tutoring

YPW Spanish Immersion School

Q?At what age can my child start YPW Spanish Immersion School?
A.

YPW accepts children from 6 weeks old through 12 years old.

Q?What is your enrollment process?
A.

YPW has ongoing enrollment. However, students in the age group 2.6 years to 6 are primarily
enrolled in September for the school year. Some of our students enroll in July for the summer
sessions and continue through the fall. Parents can select two, three, or five full day
sessions. However, the popularity of our infant and toddler program can at times limit those
options.

Q?May a child enroll just for the summer program?
A.

Yes, YPW does offer a summer program from the first of June through the third week in August. Kindergarten bound children are eligible to enroll in the summer program. Please note that YPW dedicates the fourth week of August to staff training and building maintenance.

Q?Do you offer tours of the school?
A.

Tours are available at all locations. The visit includes a 15-minute walk through the facility
and a question and answer period. Family information must be entered in our Visitor
Information form to schedule a tour: http://www.ypwkids.com/about/scheduling-a-visit-to-our-school/

Q?How can I enter my child’s name on your Visitor Information?
A.

Click onto our website “About YPW” link and select “Scheduling a Visit to our School”.

Q?What advantages do children who learn a foreign language have?
A.

“Children who have been exposed to a foreign language early often learn the read faster and with greater ease because they are able to recognize the relationship between letters and their sounds without the help of visual objects. Exposure to a second language clearly benefits children’s reading abilities.”

American Psychological Association May 1997

“Children who learn a second language typically have better problem solving abilities, better reasoning skills, and are more creative.”

Eric Clearinghouse on Languages & Linguistics

“Children with bilingual skills outperform similar monolingual children on both verbal and non-verbal tests of intelligence and typically, have higher SAT or standardized test scores. “

Department of Education, USA & ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages & Linguistics

Exposing children to a second language not only gives them the ability to communicate with more people but also teaches them to appreciate and respect other cultures and people that are different from themselves.

Q?Will teaching a second language confuse them? How will I know if it is a positive thing for my child?
A.

Teaching your child a second language won’t confuse them unless they have a language
disability. Do not be concerned if your child mixes two languages while in the process of
learning a second language, that is to be expected. Not all children exposed to a second language,
however, will acquire it well or at the same pace. That is because not all children have a facility
for learning a new language easily. Of course, girls usually develop language skills before boys,
so if your boy is still not interested in playing language games at 3, it doesn’t necessarily mean
that he won’t be able to pick up a second language. No matter how linguistic a child may be no
harm can be done by exposing them to other languages during early childhood!

Q?How can I teach my child a second language if I don’t speak much of it?
A.

Even if you don’t speak the language, you can provide your child with rich language input and
you can learn along with your child until he/she gets to a point where they are ready for more
complex language at age 5. Just because parents are bilingual doesn’t mean that they will raise
bilingual kids—one needs to be intentional about it and kids need to be interested to continue
speaking the language after they enter school. You can check out materials from the public
library or purchase and download audio CDs, software and/or DVDs to show at home, if you
desire to continue the language exposure at home.

Q?How will my child understand what is going on in class?
A.

Young children learning a second language will learn similarly to the way they learned their first language. The teacher will use hand and body cues, stories, inflection, facial signals, songs, games, and fun to make clear what is being conveyed. Children learn to explore and examine their surroundings and environment. In a short time, they catch on to what is being communicated. Young children do not have the same inhibitions that older people tend to have while learning. They are natural mimics and have little fear of making mistakes; they absorb the second language much more naturally and with less hesitation than an older child or adult might.

Q?Is there any “Spanglish” spoken by teachers in the preschool?
A.

No. Research shows that complete language immersion is important to acquisition at a young
age. Spanglish is never used.

Q?Is any prior exposure or knowledge of the second language required?
A.

No. We assume children coming to our class are being exposed to second language immersion for the first time. However, we welcome and encourage children who have some prior knowledge of a second language – they tend to be natural tutors and helpers to the other kids!

Q?Do we, as parents, need to know how to speak the second language?
A.

No. The teachers instruct your child with proper pronunciation, grammar, and accent.
Of course, having reinforcement at home is always an advantage, but children with little or no reinforcement of the second language at home are usually just as successful in immersion programs as those with native speakers at home. Parents often enjoy learning the second language at the same time as their children. Most parents observe that the younger students quickly surpass adults in their learning curve.

Q?How much of the second language will my child retain/remember?
A.

It is difficult to quantify exactly how much a child will retain since each child is unique in his/her language development. However, studies have shown that exposure to foreign language at a young age aids in learning a second or third language at adolescence and adulthood. The familiarity with the second language will also help them to “pick it up again” at a later age.

Q?Will my child be ready for kindergarten?
A.

Yes. We follow play-based preschool curriculum based on research. Our primary goals for children, aside from acquiring or reinforcing Spanish language, focus on social and emotional skills: self-regulation, decision-making, social participation, appropriate problem solving, making observations and hypotheses, making and following democratic rules, following teacher rules, and participating in a daily routine. In addition, teachers intentionally plan hands-on learning experiences that build pre-academic foundations in math, science, literacy, social studies, and the arts. Children exiting our program and entering kindergarten are well-equipped for kindergarten curriculum.

Q?Why is it so important to start learning a foreign language as early as possible?
A.

“Children have the capacity to develop new language more naturally than adults. Between the ages of 0 – 5 years old, children’s brains are prepared for language development. “The power to learn language is so great in the young child that it doesn’t seem to matter how many languages you throw their way. They can learn as many spoken languages as you allow them to hear systematically and regularly.”

Learning Languages, Winter 1996

“Studies have shown, and experience has supported, that children who learn a language before the onset of adolescence are much more likely to have a native-like pronunciation.”

ERIC

“Languages are for life and they can’t be taken away once you have learned them. By helping your child and continuing to help her, you’ll have a lasting contribution to her quality of life and understanding of others and their culture.”

Hodder and Stoughton Educational, 1994

Q?What are the myths about exposing children to foreign languages?
A.

Learning a second language will interfere with the child’s ability to learn English

“In most cases, learning another language enhances a child’s English ability. Children can learn much about English by learning the structure of other languages. Common vocabulary also helps children learn the meaning of new words in English.”

ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages & Linguistics

Q?If I don’t speak Spanish, how will I be able to teach my child?
A.

Parents do not have to be native speakers or know the foreign language to teach it to their children. There are many venues that can be used to teach children Spanish; bilingual television, songs, bilingual preschool, books, movies, bilingual toys and computer games.

Q?Will my child become proficient in the second language? How long will that take?
A.

Achieving high levels of oral proficiency in a second language is a long-term process. A long-term commitment is essential. Children may not reach proficiency in every skill area, however, your child will have a strong second language base upon which to continue moving toward full proficiency. Language learning is influenced by many factors, including students’ personality and motivation, teacher expectations, parental support and program leadership. Student success requires the active involvement of all of these stakeholders.

Q?My child does not know Spanish –will he/she be confused and not understand what to do?
A.

Our program is mainly designed for children who do not yet understand or speak the Spanish language. We do, however, welcome and encourage children who already use Spanish in their homes to be part of our program. All staff is completely bilingual in English and Spanish. The first couple weeks, we will start the program speaking both Spanish and English so that the children understand each activity and also the children become familiar with daily routine. Once the children are familiar with the activities and daily routine, it becomes easy to switch to speaking Spanish. Most of the time, children don’t even notice when we switch. They are too busy having fun. If the teacher every doubts the children understand something, she will briefly explain in English and then continue in Spanish. We are here to encourage the love of the Spanish language and will ensure that the children feel comfortable and secure. Pretty much by the fourth week of class we will totally immerse the children in the Spanish language.

YPW Workshops

Q?Who teaches the YPW workshops?
A.

YPW Instructors are highly trained and have extensive experience in their respective fields.

Q?Does my child need to be talented or love the subject in question to enroll in a YPW workshop?
A.

No. Most YPW workshops and camps are structured to allow Young People of differing ability levels to learn within the same workshop or camp. Each participant will be allowed to participate within his or her aptitude ability and encouraged to advance his or her problem-solving abilities to the next level. Your young person’s interest in the workshop subject will likely increase after exposure to the energized and unique instructional techniques used by YPW instructors.

Q?How long are the workshops?
A.

Workshops are usually 50 minutes in length. School-break/Holidays workshops and camps are 2 to 3 hours in length and include a snack break. Check the current schedule for more info.

Q?How many young people are enrolled in a workshop or camp?
A.

YPW workshops and camps for pre-school age children are limited to a maximum of 12 young people. Enrollment in YPW workshops and camps for school-age children is limited to a maximum of 18 / group. A minimum of 4 young people is necessary to keep a workshop or camp open.

Q?Can I observe my young person during a workshop or class?
A.

YPW workshop rooms are parent-viewing friendly so that you can stay and observe your young person during the workshops, as long as your presence is not a distraction. Some workshops, such as Music & Movement, require the attendance of an adult with the young person. See the workshop description for more information.

Q?How do I sign my young person up for a YPW workshop or camp?
A.

Visit the YPW website to fill out a registration form and make a payment. Payment is due in full before the start of the workshop or camp.

Q?Are the workshop and camp materials included in the price?
A.

No, there is a separate material fee. Check each program for corresponding material fee.

Q?Do workshops activities change from session to session?
A.

Yes, they usually do, but check when registering to verify that your young person is not
repeating a workshop or camp.

Q?How should the kids be dressed for any of the workshops?
A.

Your child should dress in regular school day clothing. For art workshops he/she should dress with clothes that you don’t mind getting messy.

Q?Can my kids bring snacks to a workshop or camp?
A.

No snacks or drinks during the YPW workshops please. YPW camps include a break for a snack provided by YPW.

Q?Do you offer make-up days or refunds for workshops a young person misses?
A.

Sorry, no.

Q?Do you have a cancellation policy for workshops?
A.

Workshops that do not enroll a required minimum number of students 4 days prior to the start of the workshop may be cancelled. Young people that have paid for a cancelled workshop will receive a refund or may apply credit to another workshop.

YPW will NOT refund a workshop fee for a cancellation initiated by the participant.

YPW Camps

Q?How can I find out which camps are available?
A.

For further information, please email at: info@YPWkids.com
We will let you know if a camp or workshop has space or not.
If a camp or workshop is full we can add you to our waiting list.

Q?Can you accommodate my child with special needs?
A.

We are happy to accommodate children with special needs but we ask that you notify us of your child’s needs prior to your child’s first day of camp. Please help us help your child by notifying us of any allergies, accessibility concerns, behavioral, psychological or emotional conditions, or other special needs. Please email info@YPWkids.com to contact the Camp Manager. While we hope to offer these camps to as wide a range of children as possible, it is not possible for us to offer one-on-one care. In the case of severe food allergies, it is not possible for us to monitor the food other children bring into camp.

YPW is NOT responsible for administering medication to children. Consult a pediatrician about altering the child’s dosage so that medication can be administered outside of camp hours.

Q?To make it a full day camp, do I have to pick a morning and afternoon session?
A.

We offer a wide variety of camps. We strive to help our young campers to discover intelligent fun through our hands-on and fun camps exploring different branches of art, languages, math, science and technology.

You can select a morning and afternoon camp to make a full day camp (i.e: an art camp in the morning and a science camp in the afternoon). In this way, you have a full day camp by selecting a morning and afternoon camp. This camp runs from 9 am to 4 pm.
Before ( 7 to 9 am)  and after ( 4 to 6 pm) camp care is available for an extra cost.

Or you can select our YPW Spanish Day Camp. This camp runs from 9 to 4 pm. Before and after camp care is included in the tuition if needed.

Q?How do I get to YPW?
A.

You can find directions on our website or email info@YPWkids.com

Q?Where can I go for YPW summer camps?
A.

YPW Summer Camps are available at the following locations:
YPW Camps at Westlake
3640 Bee Caves Rd
Austin, TX 78746

YPW Camps at North West
3620 Hillside Drive
Round Rock, TX 78681

Q?How should my child dress for camp?
A.

In comfortable clothes that may get messy.

Camp Day

Q?What are the qualifications of your teachers and assistants?
A.

All of our teachers are certified school teachers or highly trained professionals with extensive experience in their respective fields. They all have experience working with children and enjoy hands on interactive activities.

Q?How are campers supervised?
A.

Campers are supervised at all times. For your child’s security all campers MUST be escorted to and from their camp room by a parent or guardian and signed in and out EVERY DAY. We realize leaving your contact information each day may not always be convenient. In the event of an emergency, we want to have the most accurate contact information for you.

Q?May parents stay in the classroom?
A.

No. If you feel that your child is unable to remain in camp without you for more than a few minutes, you probably should wait a year before you send him/her to camp. Our weeklong camps promote independent learning and socialization. Parents are not allowed to remain in the classroom during camp hours.

Q?What are the behavior expectations for campers?
A.

Camper expectations are posted in each room and are emphasized throughout the week. In case of a severe behavior problem, we will call you and ask you to pick up your child. At our discretion, your child may be allowed to return to camp the following day.

Q?Whom may I contact during the day if I need to leave an emergency message concerning my child?
A.

Please either email at info@YPWkids.com or call YPW Westlake at 512-329-5611;
YPW North West at 512-248-8887 and a staff member will deliver your message to the appropriate person.

Food & Drinks

Q?Does my child need to bring a lunch?
A.

Yes. Campers are supervised in their camp room while they eat lunch.

Q?Does my child need to bring snack?
A.

YPW Provides healthy snacks to campers.

Q?Does my child need to bring drinking water to camp?
A.

Yes. Please make sure your camper brings a bottle of water everyday to camp.

Spanish Camp

Q?Does my child need previous experience with Spanish before enrolling?
A.

No, many YPW Spanish workshops and camps are developed with the beginner in mind.

Q?Do you cover different material every week / camp?
A.

Yes. Every week we cove different vocabulary and key phrases.

Q?My child knows Spanish. Do you have a camp advanced enough to keep her/him challenged?
A.

We design our Spanish Camps for children with different abilities and skills levels. For further questions email at Spanish@YPWkids.com

Q?I’m afraid my child may be bored of just taking a Spanish Camp
A.

Our Spanish curriculum is packaged with art projects, games, relay races, cooking projects, drama, singing, and more, all designed to appeal to a young child’s sense of discovery and fun. Our hands-on, interactive, high-energy approach ensures that children are motivated and engaged while learning at the same time.

Our teachers use dramatic presentation, miming, gestures, facial expressions and silliness to enhance both comprehension and fun. The curriculum, with its varied activities, and the teaching style, with its demonstrative approach, foster in children a positive attitude toward language learning.

Brownie and Cub Scout Meetings

Q?What does a Brownie meeting at YPW include?
A.

YPW Brownie meetings give your Brownie troop members the opportunity to earn a
Science “Try-It” patch by completing at least 4 exciting scientific activities. Contact Monica Moreno (contact link here) for a list of activities to choose from.

Q?What does a Cub Scout meeting at YPW include?
A.

YPW Cub Scout meetings give your Cub Scout troop members the opportunity to earn a Science belt loop by completing at least 3 exciting scientific activities. An experienced YPW Science & Technology instructor will conduct the meeting. Email us at info@YPWkids.com for a list of activities to choose from.

Q?Does YPW provide the actual try-it badge or belt loop?
A.

Sorry, no.

Q?Are snacks included?
A.

No, we do not provide snacks for meetings, but you may bring your own.

Q?How do I schedule a Brownie or Cub Scout meeting?
A.

Email us at: info@YPWkids.com, then fill out the registration form and pay a deposit in the amount of half of the meeting cost.