Elevate Your Summer with Language Immersion
Looking for a life–changing summer experience? Fill out the form to learn more about the Summer Language Academies!
We offer one month of immersion in Spanish, French, Chinese, German, and Arabic, including:
- World class language education, based on Middlebury College's renowned language immersion pedagogy
- A community Language Pledge® to speak in their target language for four weeks
- A life-changing experience on a college campus in Vermont or at one of our international study abroad sites
Watch our video from the Summer Language Academies!
About the Academy
The Language Academy aims to create lifelong language learners through the development of world language skills early in life. To this end, the Academy offers a rigorous four-week language immersion experience for rising graduated 8th graders to 12th graders who are passionate about learning a language and gaining cultural understanding. Students take a Language Pledge® to speak in their target language 24/7 while engaging in meaningful cultural exploration projects. At the Middlebury Interactive Language Academy, students make unrivaled strides in language acquisition in only four weeks.
We work with schools, foundations, and international organizations to create opportunities for young learners to attend our Academy where they become linguistically proficient and culturally versed while realizing their potential in their college years, professional life, and beyond.
The Academy is offered by Middlebury Interactive Languages, which also specializes in digital language learning for K-12 students. Middlebury College Language Schools have influenced the development of the curriculum and the “No English Spoken Here” immersion tradition at the core of the Academy experience.
Why Choose the Academy?
The Academy is an enriching program for motivated middle school and high school students who want to accelerate their language skills, while enjoying a pre-college summer camp experience with other like-minded teens. Language immersion can be challenging, but choosing to spend a summer learning a language at the Academy offers a number of tangible benefits.
We are the academic leader in world language instruction. Our Academy experience for rising 8th—12th grade students is based on 100 years of language education at Middlebury College’s renowned Language Schools. We know that the best way to learn a language is through full immersion, and at the Academy, we take immersion seriously. Students and instructors take a Language Pledge® to only speak in the target language 24/7. We make every effort to minimize English language pollution. So leave your English at home and tell your friends you will be in touch (in a new language)!
2. Role Models
Live and learn from people you admire. Don’t be surprised if your teachers and residential advisors have lived abroad themselves. They know the struggles of becoming fluent first–hand and are dedicated to helping you learn in a fun and engaging way. Our alumni often rave about the hands–on, enthusiastic, and supportive mentorship at the Academy.
3. Cultural Exploration and Project-Based Learning
It is important to learn languages in a cultural context. We bring the langauge to life with enriched language instruction in the morning and with cultural activities in the afternoon. Depending on your target language, you may be learning salsa, Tai Chi, or bread–making. Skits are performed and sports are played againt rival langauge teams. Cultural tours of ancient cities are available in our international sites as well.
4. Domestic and International Opportunities
At the Academy, you can decide where you learn best. You can choose to focus on language immersion in Vermont at a college campus or to learn in an international setting abroad. Contact us, and we can help you decide which setting best fits your needs!
Our immersive summer language program is about creating a supportive community where every moment becomes an opportunity for language exploration.
In the field of language education, you often hear a familiar story about immersion programs. People recall traveling and exploring while attending exciting study abroad programs in high school and college. The sites were amazing and the cultures were rich with history and tradition. In retrospect, however, the experience was sometimes disappointing. There was so much time spent speaking English with other American students that their language skills didn’t improve much at all.
What is Language Immersion?
Language immersion is a proven method of language pedagogy in which all learning happens in your language of study. The Academy is a full–immersion program, meaning that all instruction, activities, and interactions are in your target language for the entire duration of the program.
With immersion, language and culture are inextricably linked. Class materials may come in the form of a magazine clipping or a YouTube video. Vocabulary words are learned through daily activities—playing a game of soccer or learning how to cook dumplings. The immersion experience is what sets our program apart from other language learning programs.
“Immersion is how you learn. Once you’re immersed, you’re not going to learn the language just because you want to. You’re going to learn to the language because you need to communicate.”
How Is Immersion Different from Other Language Learning Methods?
In school, language classes often focus on grammar and vocabulary for one class a day. At the Academy—though grammar and vocabulary are a large part of the curriculum—the 24/7 immersive environment is what enables students to quickly improve their speaking and listening skills while truly living in language.
Students commit to the Language Pledge®, developed at Middlebury College's Language Schools, promising that they will speak in language 24/7 and will not speak a single word in any other language for the entire four weeks of the program. The Language Pledge® plays an essential role in the learning process because it represents your commitment to participating in a totally immersive community.
Living in an Immersive Community
Because immersion is so inherently about community and interacting with others, your commitment to the Pledge determines not only your own success and growth at the Academy, but the success of your peers as well. You are all in this together! And the Academy has established an amazing support network to guide you through.
We provide a wonderfully diverse community that welcomes absolute beginners to fluent speakers. We do not emphasize forced memorization, but hearing and repeating as a primary basis. You just go about living your life. The next thing you know, your peers have become your good friends and learning the language has evolved into an organic and familiar experience.