Get ready for Summer Camp!

Located on Whidbey Island, NWLA’s Summer Language Camps provide immersion instruction through fun, themed activities in a beautiful outdoor setting.  Now in their 16th year, these popular camps allow students to explore a country’s culture while learning the language with lasting results.

“French camp was the highlight of my childhood. I remember suddenly realizing there is so much more in the world,” said a 17 year old who is now back as a counselor.

And a parent said, “Ellie loved the camp. She goes around the house singing the songs and she loves to repeat her lines from the play.”

It’s NWLA’s mission to make the camp experience available to all, regardless of ability to pay. Scholarships and sibling discounts are available; please inquire. To make a donation to our scholarship fund, contact Josette Hendrix at [email protected].

Read on to learn about this year’s camps and themes!

For Kids (Ages 7-12*)

Children enjoy a week filled with all the joys of summer camp, while being immersed in another language through music, arts & crafts, exuberant games, and ethnic food. The week culminates with a presentation to parents and community members of an original play, film, or sporting event.

Monday-Friday, 9:30 am – 3:00 pm


*Older students may apply for counselor-in-training positions

Japanese Camp, July 9 – 13


Have you noticed that Japanese art is different from art in the West?  That’s partly because, instead of the classical beauty of the Greeks, the Japanese value something called “wabi-sabi”: an aesthetic of imperfection, simplicity, and wear.  Can old, torn things be beautiful? Can an obvious repair or flaw make us appreciate something more? In this year’s Japanese Camp, we’ll explore “wabi-sabi” and Japanese life and art in visits to Japanese gardens and temples, in a real Japanese tea ceremony, and by making our own “wabi-sabi” tea bowls.


French Camp, July 16 – 20

Le Naissance du Cinema

Martin Scorsese’s acclaimed film Hugo brought the motion picture’s beginnings in 1930s Paris vividly to life. In this year’s French camp, we’ll explore this history too, making our own film, sets, and costumes, and learning about the early days of the movies in the time of George Melies and the Brothers Lumiere.  Expect lots of fun crafts and activities as we figure out how to replicate Melies’s rocket flying into the moon, and take a trip to the movies in themed games and song.


Spanish, July 30 – August 3

Los Juegos Olimpicos

Are you ready for the 2012 NWLA Olympic Games? Spanish campers this year will learn about sport and citizenship, creating their own version of the games happening this summer in London.  Campers will build their own countries and teams, designing flags and uniforms and taking turns reporting on and participating in their own friendly competition in this dynamic, high-energy camp.

Chinese Camp, August 13 – 17


Learn Chinese through China’s 2000-year-long history! This year’s Chinese campers will explore the Forbidden City, meet Chinese Emperors and their famous armies of terra cotta horses and soldiers, and learn about ancient Chinese inventions like the abacus, Go, Kung Fu, paper, the Peking Opera and more! Activities will include watercolor painting, opera masks, paper cutting, traditional drama, songs, and games.

New! English Camp (ESL), August 20-24

An American Summer

ESL students in our English Camp will delve into classic American summer camp traditions, with lessons in archery, canoeing, and edible plants, building campfires and eating s’mores.  Learn English through the rituals of American childhood summers: telling ghost stories, performing skits, singing camp songs and more!

New! German Mini-Camp, August 22-24


For Preschoolers & Parents (Ages 2-6)

Our preschooler program is designed for children and adults to learn a language together.  Through play and gentle, age-appropriate activities and games, participants build up a repertoire of words and phrases that can become part of everyday family life.

French: July 23-27

Spanish: August 6-10

9:30 am – 1:00 pm

TUITION: $300 per family (includes child and guardian)

Family Lodging at the Cultural Center Guesthouse

Enjoy Whidbey Island while your child’s at camp! The NWLA Cultural Center Guesthouse offers B&B accommodations for campers and their families on 3 acres of landscaped grounds.  With Langley’s restaurants, movie theater, and shops a five-minute walk away, the fun doesn’t have to end with the day’s activities!  For off-island families or parents just looking for a change of scene, our lushly planted patios and comfortable rooms are a perfect place for a restful family getaway.


Don’t let the kids have all the fun! Refresh or expand your language skills in a stress-free, supportive small-group setting.  We offer weekend immersions and private lessons at reduced and competitive rates.  Call or email to inquire!

Contact NWLA at [email protected] or 360-321-2101 for more information, to book a room, or to register.