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Holiday Clubs to improve English language for children 10 and 11yo? Or other immersion ways?

(12 Posts)
MrsCoyote Fri 20-May-16 12:25:54

We live in European country and English is not our native language (so please forgive any mistakes in my posts).
My passive English is quite good - I like to read discussions here and am able to watch Grey's Anatomy and Game of Thrones in original:-) but I don't use it actively much.

My children go to school with more English language than usual - think 8 lessons a week, also with a native speaker, for four years. So they are able to speak basics and understand - but it is not fluent and I would like to improve it - not in language school but in a more natural way - by being with kids their age, having fun and learning by the way.

I would like to find some camps for kids - for summer holidays and also for other holidays in England (autumn break, spring break). This and the next year would be very good for it - they are still at primary school - so we can have some time out of school and travel to England.

I would prefer something good, safe and recomended, but not much expensive - I am earning not in pounds and the exchange rate is not in my favor.

So my questions are:
Can you give me some advice?
Can you reccomend some camps/summer or school break activities for children?
What time are there breaks/holidays in English schools?

ReallyTired Fri 20-May-16 14:51:41

What are your children interested in? There isn't quite the same culture of residential holiday camps as the uk. You might consider PGL if want residential.

There are lots of day camps and that might be more affordable if you can find some short term accomodiation. You would have to decide which part of the U.K. you want to stay and perhaps some mumsnetters can give some recommendations.

MrsCoyote Fri 20-May-16 18:03:43

Thank you, ReallyTired.

Kids are interested in usual things - one in sports, adventure, minecraft, the other in animals, craft, outdoors.

The idea of day camp seems good, I can come too.
I would like to have a car and the easiest way is a ferry from Holland or Belgium to the east coast of England (I am not sure - area of Ipswich or Norwich?)
I am not used to driving on the left side so a smaller town and not very busy roads would be better, I think (so no Dover and London, definitely).

Could someone reccomend what should I look for?

MrsCoyote Fri 20-May-16 18:06:30

recommend even

LIZS Fri 20-May-16 18:15:10

Dc school host Our World camps in summer holidays which are residential for overseas children. Day camps here include Camp Beaumont but these are often really daycare for children of working parents. Pgl is residential at their own sites and can include family groups.

MrsCoyote Fri 20-May-16 19:48:32

Thanks LIZS. Maybe I would prefer day camps (I would come and stay in a BaB with kids).
What do you mean day camps are often really daycare for children of working parents?

LIZS Fri 20-May-16 19:53:06

Yes, unless they are focussed on a particular activity - drama or sport for example. Lots of local councils hold them at sports centres and private day schools often run their own to cater for working families.

ReallyTired Fri 20-May-16 20:41:59

Most towns have sports courses or music or drama courses. I think you need to pick a town that you want to stay in and maybe mumsnetters would recommend a course. Daycare schemes are expensive. If you are on holiday you only need a couple of hours.

A lot depends on your budget.

Izlet Fri 20-May-16 20:44:26

OP, another option is Ireland. Cheaper than England and you can pay in euros. I'm also in continental Europe and some friends of mine with a lot less English went to Ireland twice and their children frequented day camps. They were in Dublin but I'm pretty sure there are others elsewhere. I can find out where they went if you're interested. It wasn't an English for foreigners thing, it was with Irish kids.

Another thing to bear in mind is the UK school holidays are a lot shorter than Southern European school holidays (if you're from there). So any holiday clubs won't start until late July, which is a pain for our kids who are off from early June.

Finally, on the ferry to the UK, we went Hoek van Holland to Harwich, so we missed London entirely. The first roundabouts are a bit freaky but after that just followed other cars, so it wasn't too much of a challenge. If you decide to go to Ireland it will probably be best to fly, although I think there are ferries from Northern Spain if that's handy for you.

MrsCoyote Sat 28-May-16 19:43:39

Izlet, thanks, but Ireland is not an option. I would like to miss London entirely too - thats why I am considering eastern coast (Ipwich, Harwich and around) where ferries go from Holland.

I think I would like to find some accomodation (BaB, private room atc. owned by people with children) where is also a chance for kids to play and communicate with other kids. And during the day I would send them to a summer day campsmile

Anyone has some ideas what to google?
Any recommendations?

lifeisunjust Sun 29-May-16 17:39:53

Follow the advice to choose a town and then look for camps.

There is this organisation which uses the buildings of schools to run Summer day camps, it's a pity you are not interested in being near Dover as there are several good choices such as Northbourne Park school near Deal (it's a private school which is beautiful, small open air pool, it specializes in outdoor education), 3 schools in Canterbury, I'd go for St Edmund's there, another private school.

You can search on a map using this link.

lifeisunjust Sun 29-May-16 17:43:36

If you want your children to mix with other English speaking children, a B and B is not a good choice. You should stay at a holiday camp. There are loads along the coast of southern England and in very touristy areas as well. In fact, many of these holiday camps run "day camps" as part of the holidays where children spend a few hours with an animator and a group of children.

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