About Bon Voyage World Languages Academy
At Bon Voyage World Languages Academy, our mission is to create a new generation of culturally aware, global citizens who embrace new experiences and ideas, and who work to create a more collaborative world.
Bon Voyage World Languages Academy was founded by our director of Curriculum, Instruction, and International Programs Elizabeth Porter. We are a national organization headquartered in Richland, Washington.
Bon Voyage World Languages Academy was founded in April 2016. We offer language classes for both credit and enrichment. Courses take place online in our virtual Zoom Classroom. These courses are designed for students ages 3 to 18 and adults. Our virtual classroom functions much like a traditional brick and mortar classroom, and offers us many of the same benefits of a regular classroom, including the ability to group students into cooperative learning teams.
We also offer our cultural outreach program and international travel and immersion programs. We have been a registered nonprofit organization since March 2017. Our program is dedicated to the promotion multicultural and global citizenship education. This program supports our immersion programs and helps us provide scholarships.
Our Method- Language with the Five Senses
A zero-translation, Comprehensible Input based, and Brain-Friendly method that facilitates language acquisition the way our brains are naturally wired for learning.
The Bon Voyage Method, Language with the 5 Senses, is unique in that it focuses on communication and fluency. Our method reduces fatigue on the brain that can come with second language acquisition.
Language with the 5 Senses teaches language through pictures, stories, rhythm, music, body movements, and well-focused experiential learning tasks. We do not use translation but focus on whole language and communication. We use all 5 senses to FEEL and EXPERIENCE the language.
Our method focuses on making language connections in the brain and opening those connections for the acquisition of new language. This method might feel slightly unconventional but it is highly effective. The method takes a little while for students to get used to it, because the instinct is to want to translate.
All coursework has been designed to help students practice specific practical language skills that will help build brain connections and promote fluency. Students are assessed through experiential learning projects that require them to APPLY their learning in a practical way – NOT through tests.
Because the method focuses on techniques that create language connections in the brain that promote communication and fluency, and because this is a whole language approach, we are a zero translation school! We ask that parents who are sitting in class with students PLEASE NOT translate for your children. There are times when students will not understand right away, and THAT IS OK! Translation breaks the connections in the brain that are being created and creates reliance on the native language to speak the new language. Doing so hinders fluency because it creates a barrier for the learner to be able to think in the new language. Not only that, but language cannot always be translated word-for-word. That type of translation can create cultural misunderstanding. The Bon Voyage method helps students to be able to think in the new language by providing “comprehensible input.” Students are able to communicate much faster than if they had used a translation method.
In addition, we use a lot of authentic materials in class that come from the countries that speak the languages we teach.