Expectations by Age
Since all of you are starting the curriculum at different times, and some of you with multiple aged children, I wanted to give you my recommendations on how to use this program and what to expect of your child. Of course these are just my opinions based on my interpretation of what Charlotte Mason said about foreign language paired with my own experience learning and teaching a foreign language.
Please, be sensitive to your child. One of our challenges is to find that perfect balance of keeping interest but not pushing too hard. Be certain that Spanish learning remains enjoyable. The most important thing is instilling a love for learning languages early on.
Here is what I suggest depending on your child’s age:
0-1 years: Use the curriculum for exposure only. Let them listen to the audios. Talk to them. Sing the Spanish audios with a slow tempo as you go about your days together or put them to sleep.
2 years: Have your child learn and perform the motions of the songs and let him try to sing it if he wants (even if it sounds like he is creating a whole new language of his own!).
3-5 years: Do not focus on learning everything. Follow your child’s interest and let him guide you on which activity to spend more time on than others. You can memorize songs but don't follow the curriculum timeline. Charlotte Mason had students learn two songs per term during formal studies. Do not have your child learn anything formally. Do everything informally and keep it very playful.
6 years: If you already started formal lessons, follow the curriculum as is.
7+: Follow the curriculum as is. If an activity seems too "childish" for them you can:
-Have them learn the sentence and not perform the action.
-Have the older students tell the sentence to the little ones so that they perform the action.
-Older kids may also memorize and recite more poems and songs than the curriculum suggests (check out our "extra curricular activities" as added practice as well!)
If your child is under 6 you can either loosely follow the curriculum so that it takes about a month per Unit, or cycle the curriculum more than once, leveling up each time. For example, If you start with a newborn, go through the audio files playing them in the background, singing and talking to him. When he turns three start all over again from Year 1 Unit 1 but now leveling up. At age 6 you can start all over with Year 1 and follow it as the directions indicate.