Education   Mon, November 30, 2009 07:52 PM

Washington, DC Isabella & Ferdinand™ Spanish Language Adventures™, a Spanish language learning program in Northwest Washington for children ages 1-9 is open for Winter Registration. Priority registration closes this Friday, December 4. Isabella & Ferdinand, which teaches the Spanish language to children through a special cultural curriculum, is located at  5117 MacArthur Blvd, NW, 2nd Floor, Washington, DC 20016. Winter session runs from January 4 to March 13, 2010. Space is limited.  

Isabella & Ferdinand Spanish immersion classes are tailored towards children with or without a Spanish language background. Founders Alexandra Migoya and Pilar O’Leary state, “Whether your child is learning Spanish for the first time, is already bilingual, preparing to take Spanish in school or could just use a supplemental class to strengthen the Spanish she or is already learning, Isabella & Ferdinand provides classes for every level of learner.” Add Migoya and O’Leary, “We designed this program with our own children in mind, desiring a high-caliber program that teaches Spanish language and culture.” Unlike other local foreign language programs for kids, Isabella & Ferdinand is exclusively a Spanish language program and makes sure that the culture of the Spanish-speaking world is part of every class. As Migoya and O’Leary emphasize, “Our mission is for children to become linguistically fluent in Spanish and knowledgeable about the art and culture of the Spanish-speaking world. We believe this ultimately allows kids to use Spanish in a more comprehensive, effective way.” 

Launched in October 2009, the program has received high marks from parents. Testimonials include:

  • "Isabella & Ferdinand has proven to be a wonderful cultural and linguistic experience for my children. The program is terrific for children with or without a Spanish-language background, and expands a child's world through cultural activities---both in the classroom, as well as the many organized activities outside the classroom!"
  • "My child is intrigued and stimulated by this immersion program. She absolutely loves her Spanish class!"
  • "Isabella & Ferdinand is a charming program that draws an international crowd. The small class size ensures the toddlers are well engaged. My 15 month old gets a real kick out of the music and activity...and so do I!"
  • "We are delighted we are with Isabella & Ferdinand. Spanish is my first language, and my husband and I vowed that we would raise our children in a bilingual household, which we are doing. We were struggling, however, to find a bilingual program to support our 3-year-old's burgeoning language capacity and were so happy to have found your program. [My son] just loves it! He felt immediately comfortable with the setting and the teachers, and comes home singing the songs he's learned--totalmente en español, por supuesto! Isabella & Ferdinand's focus on the cultural aspect of learning a language is truly what sets it apart from other language programs."
  • "The Spanish immersion classes at Isabella & Ferdinand are enjoyable, entertaining and culturally educational. In addition to learning another language at a young age, the program provides for a challenging yet fun environment to grow and learn. We especially love how [the program] incorporate[s] the extracurricular cultural activities with the learning of the language. The overall energy and dedication [brought] to the program is amazing."

All of Isabella & Ferdinand’s teachers are native speakers. The program’s music director, a talented guitarist, pianist and composer hailing from southern Spain, is a part of every class, ensures that music is used throughout the classroom to enhance children's learning and fun.

As a supplemental offering Isabella & Ferdinand now also hosts on-site children’s birthday parties with themes such as flamenco dancing, Mexican fiesta, tropical beach and Latin American rainforest. All birthday parties include live entertainment.

Cultural Curriculum and Programming

Isabella & Ferdinand Spanish Language Adventures collaborates with the Embassies of Spain and Latin America, the Spanish Department of Georgetown University, GALA Hispanic Theatre, Instituto Cervantes and other educational and cultural institutions. This past Fall, the program’s young students began their Spanish studies by taking a look at the Golden Age in Spain. In addition to their activities in class, students and their families went to see the Washington Ballet's performance of Cervantes' seminal work "Don Quixote" (including a backstage tour with artistic director Septime Webre), participated in tours of the exhibit,  "The Art of Power: Royal Armor and Portraits from Imperial Spain" organized by the Embassy of Spain at the National Gallery of Art; had a visit from Christopher Columbus (actor Hector Diaz), went to see "Ferdinand the Bull", created a "Day of the Dead" altar and painted with Diego Velazquez.  This in addition to learning the alphabet, numbers, colors, songs, stories and everyday sayings in Spanish in an immersion setting. This Winter, students will take a “tour” around Latin America--visiting Mexico, Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Cuba. To complement work in class on these themes, Isabella & Ferdinand will continue to organize activities with the Embassies of Spain and Latin America as well as other cultural institutions.  Activities currently planned include:

  • Participation in the “Los Reyes Magos” (Three Kings Day) celebration at GALA Hispanic Theatre;
  • A private tour of an exhibition of the colorful works of Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo at the Meridian International Center;
  • Viewings of films at the GALita’s Children’s film festival at GALA Hispanic Theatre, presenting the latest trends in children’s Latin American film;
  • Activities related to learning about the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in Peru;


  • Music and dance presentations of tango (Argentina), vallenato and cumbia (Colombia), merengue (Dominican Republic), salsa (Cuba) and bomba (Puerto Rico);
  • In-class activities related to the Costa Rican rainforest, the process of making coffee and the creation of dazzling Colombian emerald jewelry;
  • And even a “parents’ night out” featuring: A tour of the exhibition, “The Sacred Made Real” at the National Gallery of Art, which portrays a variety of paintings and sculptures from the Spanish baroque.


Classes and Registration 

Isabella & Ferdinand classes are 1 hour each and are offered Monday-Saturday. Classes on Tuesdays and Friday afternoons are geared towards children with a bilingual background or with previous knowledge of Spanish. Children may take classes once to up to six times per week. For the littlest learners (12 months to 3 years), Isabella & Ferdinand offers "Mommy and me" style classes such as Baby Barcelona and Olé and Play while the older set (3-9 years) can take classes after school beginning at 3:15 PM. In addition, Isabella & Ferdinand is now offering a supplemental advanced Madrid Musketeers II class designed for older bilingual children for reinforcement in writing, reading and grammar.  Classes are kept purposely small (no more than 8-10 students per class), so space is extremely limited. For more information and to register today visit:

Alexandra Migoya 202 364 4999