Speak, Listen, Engage: Practical Activities for Language Immersion This Summer

Welcome to another blog post in our "Poolside Proficiency" series, where we explore a variety of engaging ways...


Welcome to another blog post in our "Poolside Proficiency" series, where we explore a variety of engaging ways to immerse yourself in the languages and cultures you teach—without needing to travel far. From local experiences to digital explorations, here are seven activities to enhance your linguistic and cultural understanding, enriching your personal growth and professional practice.

  • Local Cultural Festivals
    & Events

    Dive into the vibrant world of cultural festivals, art exhibitions, or traditional performances happening in your area. These gatherings are a firsthand experience of the language, music, art, and customs of another country.
  • Language Meetups
    & Conversation Clubs

    Participate in or organize a language meetup. Two humans willing to speak the target language are all you need! These meetups can be face-to-face or virtual. Such clubs are perfect for practicing speaking skills and learning colloquial expressions in a friendly environment.
  • Cooking Classes or
    Culinary Experiences

    Take a cooking class that teaches cuisine from a target culture or host a culturally themed potluck dinner. Consider the possibility of preparing some of your new-found treats with other educators in your community. Since cultural identity is infused in recipes from around the world, profitez-en!
  • Volunteer with Immigrant Communities

    Engage with local immigrant communities through volunteer work. This provides a meaningful way to practice a language and understand current cultural contexts. In addition, your contributions will go far in making your community and the world a better place to live!
  • Watch Foreign Language Films
    & TV Shows

    Watch films or TV shows in the target language. This not only improves listening skills but also helps you pick up on cultural nuances and non-verbal cues. Netflix, Univision, TV5Monde, YouTube are among the many options you have to engage and enjoy!
  • Listen to Music and Radio in the Target Language

    Immerse yourself in language through music. Listening to music and singing songs helps us retain word chunks and expressions more easily. The rhythms, repetitive patterns and the activation of emotional connections enhance language learning for everyone. Check out Paroles de Clips from TV5Monde, Zambombazo, Deutsche Musik Radio, or any favorite site or radio station.

Don't miss our Language Lounge LIVE panel discussion on June 14, 2024 at 1:00 ET. Panelists from national language associations will share their ideas on how to get out into the community to use your language and make intercultural connections. More info here.

Sharing Your Experiences: As you dive into these immersive activities, we encourage you to share your experiences in our Facebook communities, "On your Way(side)" and "Proficiency Talks." Use the hashtag #SummerCulturalExchange to post about your adventures, learnings, and insights. This not only fosters a sense of community but also inspires others to explore and engage with different cultures and languages.

No matter where you are this summer, opportunities to immerse yourself in the languages and cultures you teach are plentiful. These sensational seven activities not only help you refine your language skills but also bring authentic, vibrant experiences into your teaching. Challenge yourself to try new things, share your journey, and open up a world of cultural and linguistic enrichment right from your own backyard or living room.

Bonus: Join our Proficiency Talks Live Facebook group and join the conversation or tag us on X or LinkedIn @waysidepublishing. Share your best insights from Language Lounge Live Panel Discussion.

And don’t forget to check out our other Poolside Proficiency recommendations and play our Poolside Proficiency bingo! Learn more HERE!