3 to 6 Language Camp

The Summer Foreign Language Immersion Camp has registered over 125, 3rd to 6th grade campers since its 2009 opening. Camp is divided into four critical language groups:

  • Arabic
  • Chinese
  • Japanese
  • Russian

Campers have been studying a critical foreign language since kindergarten or first grade and are non-native speakers. Camp is in session 5 mornings a week for 3 weeks. Students are transported to and from camp by summer school bus transportation and enjoy breakfast and lunch each day through the city’s summer food distribution program. Each camp session coordinates activities around a theme.

  • 2011's Theme — “Campers Give Back…Helping Hands Around the Globe”
  • 2010's Theme — "AWL's Got Talent"
  • 2009's Theme — "Here's What We Do! How About YOU?"

Camp Goals  

  • A fun and dynamic language immersion experience using technology as a learning vehicle through which proficiency in listening/speaking/reading modes in the target language is improved.
  • An intensive concentrated enriching study going beyond the confines of the regular school year language program through which understanding of culture and manners are expanded.

The goals are realized by implementing project-based educational strategies including numerous off-site experiences and integration of a variety of technologies and educational activities.


Digital Backpacks. Campers work daily with Digital Backpacks to collect pictures, videos and recordings according to the week’s activities.

Digital BackPack

  • Laptop
  • FLIP Video Camera
  • Digital Camera
  • iPod
  • iPod Recorder
  • Headphones

Field Trips. Wednesdays...field trip days...have included:

  • Theodore M Berry International Friendship Park
  • Krohn Conservatory
  • Purple People Bridge
  • Barnes and Noble Book Store
  • Greater Cincinnati Islamic Center
  • Middle Eastern Café
  • Ronald McDonald House
  • Japanese Serenity Garden - Cincinnati’s Civic Garden Center
  • Greater Cincinnati International Airport
  • Jungle Jim's
  • Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden
  • Findlay Market
  • Ten Thousand Villages
  • Bonbonerie

Discovery. Campers' days are divided among discovery activities geared toward deepening their understanding of the Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and Russian languages and cultures. Campers...

  • Play outdoor games
  • Play indoor games
  • Create cultural art projects
  • Sing folk songs
  • Learn folk dances
  • Create simple plays
  • Take neighborhood walks
  • Collect digital videos and pictures
  • Produce a final digital presentation

Special 2011 Outreach Activity

In 2011, all critical language groups contributed to the “Giving Back” theme by working on a major camp project...creating a Senbazuru (1,000 origami cranes) stabile (stationary mobile).

The Japanese Senbazuru project focused on students working cooperatively to fold 1,000 cranes to be presented to the families, children and staff of the Cincinnati Ronald McDonald House as a symbol of hope and courage. According to Japanese legend, folding a thousand cranes grants a wish.

The stabile was so large it was necessary to hang it in the school cafeteria while the work progressed.

The presentation ceremony took place on the camp's final Wednesday at the Ronald McDonald House where each student group recited, sang or performed a dance aligned to the hope and courage theme. The Senbazuru stabile hangs in a prominent location in the Ronald McDonald House entry hall.


The Academy of World Languages school principal serves as the camp supervisor with a full time project manager overseeing day-to-day details. Each language group is directed by an experienced native-speaking instructor and a high language proficient student intern. A Technologist-in-Residence and technology intern manage the maintenance and use of the technology. Special instructors for art, music and physical education lead each language group in culturally relevant projects.