Spain: Spanish Language & Culture

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About

Begin your journey in Madrid, exploring famous sites, museums, and neighborhoods while sampling local food. Travel to the province of Andalucía and dive into Spanish language classes.

This program has two language groups. Group One has language training in Granada, where the group will attend exclusive classes divided by language and learn through music, film, city scavenger hunts, and field trips. Group Two has language classes and arts training in Guadix. This group will practice Spanish with classes in ceramics, theater, and flamenco. Students will learn about Romani culture and practice their flamenco with local community members. Both groups explore Granada, including the Alhambra palace, city gardens, and local museums.

Your immersion continues with a homestay, where you will visit local markets, beaches, and cafés with a host family. Experience Spain’s outdoors while trekking along a river and canoeing. Return to Madrid for final language practice.

Highlights
  • Language
  • Arts
  • Culinary
  • Water Activity
  • Homestay

Questions & Answers

Reviews

96%
based on 13 reviews
  • Growth 9.4
  • Support 9.4
  • Fun 9.6
  • Housing 9.2
  • Safety 9.6
Showing 1 - 13 of 13
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Rachel
10/10

Amazing Trip

Activities were very enjoyable and helped the group become closer and work together. The classes we took were pleasant and fun. The host family made me feel comfortable and included me in all of their activities and made me feel as if I was back in Florida. They made me feel comfortable. The group leaders made me feel safe and made sure I was feeling okay considering my dietary needs. My overall experience could not have gone any better than it did.

How can this program be improved?
My experience couldn't have gone any better.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Tiffany
10/10

Best Summer Ever

Going to Spain with the Experiment was the best decision of my life. Not only was I able to understand the Spanish culture and language but i was also immersed in courses where I learned Spanish, ceramics, and flamenco dancing. I was able to do tours of authentic places in Spain where the tourist population is minimal to none. I felt like doing this i was able to have a better experience and understanding of the Spanish culture and improved my Spanish because I was forced to communicate by speaking only Spanish. I was also able to make friends who are now like family to me and I consider like my brothers and siblings. There is nothing I would want to change about my experience and the program.

How can this program be improved?
This program can be improved by the group leaders giving more heads up of what the day's activity would be so that a student can dress more accordingly to the activity.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Nathan
10/10

The Experience of a Lifetime!

This program was so much more than a simple trip abroad. From living with a wonderful, caring, and supportive host family to making countless connections with locals and fellow Experimenters alike, this experience was truly one that I will never forget. Despite previous travels abroad, this experience allowed me to completely immerse myself in a foreign culture more fully than any opportunity that I had had before. It was truly amazing to be able to meet local Spaniards and create unique, memorable friendships with them while learning about Spain’s beautiful language and culture. However, I still believe that the best part of this experience was the ability to live with a host family for an entire week and a half. Although the availability of this aspect of traveling abroad is harder to find nowadays, it is, in my opinion, what made this trip so unbelievable. During this time period, my Spanish skills improved remarkably and I made unforgettable personal connections with my host family and their friends which will undoubtedly last a lifetime. All in all, my participation in this program has provided me with indescribably precious memories and friendships that I am sure to treasure for the rest of my life.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Iliyah
10/10

Life Changing

Going abroad by itself can be lifechanging, but the ease of transitioning and the help of my group leaders is really what helped me be as open and excited as I was. Not only were leaders there to teach us life skills and skills for abroad, they also were emotionally there for us when the reality of situations hit. Being with The Experiment, I never felt unsafe or out of place wherever I went. The bonds I've made and people I've connected with exceeds any other group experience I've had domestic or abroad.

How can this program be improved?
The only issue I had was finding my way around the airport
Yes, I recommend this program
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Adreanna
10/10

Homeless

"Por favor ayudame"- A piece of cardboard held between tired hands grabbed my eye. A woman, maybe late 30's, held out this cry for help, asking pedestrians for spare change. Her sign then continued to describe how she has 2 children in need of food. Unfortunately, during my time in Spain, I saw this too often. "How are they allowed to beg?" I asked. Arturo, our in-country advisor, had a solemn look on his face and explained how homelessness is a big issue in Spain. It seemed to me that asking for change was legal and often ignored. As well as sleeping on benches, ledges, or anywhere you can lay your belongings down. I had never seen something like this before. I knew homelessness was a problem, but I have never realized it was to this extent.
In my hometown of Key West, begging is not tolerated. So this situation was something extremely odd and foreign, but to Arturo, it was something sad and typical. In Granda, as we took our hike to where we would have our language classes, we stopped at "La Mirador de San Nicholas" A viewpoint overlooking La Alhambra. There sat an older woman, next to her, boxes of castantes. Shell-shaped clappers connected with string. As people passed by she looked longingly. As if praying for someone to look at her product. As someone would walk by, she would play the castantes.
This woman stayed in my mind throughout the day, as we began to leave the school, I saw her again still playing her castantes. Then almost every day on our way to school I would see her. It bothered me so much I began to not even look at her. But as we pass more and more people without homes, I saw others do the same. Too ashamed to watch and to distracted to care. I then saw how instead of becoming the solution, I was ignoring the problem.
Over 40,000 people in Spain are homeless,1.5 million families are living in shelters, and over 100 million people are homeless worldwide. As these statistics continue to rise, so does the rate of unemployment. These events have unexpectedly made me realize that because of my actions I might have affected someone's life. I was feeding into these statistics without even realizing it. Although I might not be able to help them financially, I could help with my body expression and what I say. Sometimes just being kind to someone can change an attitude. Or perspective.
Too many times have I seen mothers with their children hold just a little bit tighter while passing by someone less fortunate than them, or see someone looking down at them because of their situation. Unfortunately, people are put in that position of being homeless because of being laid off at work, addiction, etc.…
Since my Experiment in Spain, I've found myself being kinder. Saying hello instead of silently judging, or offering a warm smile while passing by instead of moving away. I believe that people follow by example. I am now a senior in high school and have learned that what I do is seen by others. Therefore what I do or say can influence people positively or negatively. I want to be that change that people see in the world. I am a leader and a role model to the younger generation. I believe that educating people on the statistics of homelessness and showing how to be kind to people can help better the future and help create a more peaceful world. This program has enlightened me in so many ways that I could go on forever about my experience. I've chosen this story to talk about to show that actually experiencing the country does not always mean rainbows and butterflies. This has opened my eyes to an issue that I otherwise would have never thought about and has made me realize that I can influence change from the knowledge I've learned in my experiment abroad.

How can this program be improved?
I believe this program is perfect the way it is.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Jake
8/10

My Experiences in Spain

I must say that my trip to Spain was all that I expected and more. Throughout the trip, I was taught the Spanish language through complete immersion, and I learned more than I thought possible. I think it's important that future participants realize that this trip is a learning experience designed so that any Spanish language background is fine. This was most emphasized by my lack of in-depth knowledge because of the few language classes I had taken prior. However, it is essential that I state, that this lack of knowledge, though troublesome, was efficacious in altering the experiences I had. Through my struggles with the language barrier, my trip was made unique. I forced myself out of the so called 'comfort zone' and into the unique country of Spain. I learned the names of foods in Spanish by simply eating them and figuring out what I ate after, and I learned subjunctives through the explanations of kids my age in Spain. Overall, I must say that this trip was a learning experience, and any future experimenter should know that the best way to learn in Spain is full immersion. No matter how little Spanish you know, it's good to meet locals and just talk to them.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Ciara
9/10

No Pain Spain

This program provided me with a comfortable and encourage setting of kids from all of the US as well as kids from Spain to help improve my language skills as well as explore the culture. The in country leader was fantastic at explaining historical sites and significance to us both in Spanish and in English, allowing us to have a deeper understanding of our surroundings. The homestay portion was for me, as well as many others, was another great highlight of the trip. Personally, the activities done with the host siblings made everyone feel included and allowed us to make unforgettable friendships. A lot of us still have shared group chats to keep in contact with one another.

How can this program be improved?
The only thing that caused a little concern were the living conditions in Granada. This included things like not being able to eat outside the cafeteria, the rooms smelling, but these were eventually compromised.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Janet
9/10

Spain 2018

My experience on the Experiment was beyond incredible. Initially, I was extremely hesitant to be immersing myself in such an unfamiliar culture for what seemed to be for such an extensive amount of time, but these emotions quickly faded. The 15 strangers that made up my group turned into my close friends almost instantaneously, and the experiences we shared were beyond compare. From exploring the streets of Madrid and Toledo, to meeting our homestay families in Guadix, to taking language and history classes in Granada, my time in Spain succeeded all my expectations. While I was the most anxious about the homestay portion of the trip, I ended up absolutely loving it. My family was beyond welcoming, and even though the language barrier was difficult to take in at first, I grew more comfortable communicating as time went by. I have so many great memories with my family from Guadix and they were, without a doubt, one the hardest goodbyes. I highly recommend this program, as not only is Spain such an amazing country full of endless culture and beauty, but I also met some of my best friends through this experience.

Yes, I recommend this program
Jane
10/10

Life Changing

I went into this trip with not super high expectations because I was a bit nervous about spending a full month in a different country (my first time in Europe, no less!) and a different language with a group of people I'd never met before. My Experiment group turned out to be some of the coolest, funniest, most loving and wonderful people I've ever had the honor of meeting. They are like my second family. We still keep in touch and talk quite often! The program itself was also amazing! I learned so much about Spain's history and culture. We were able to visit some beautiful museums and see great pieces of art. I loved every second of it. Our homestays were in Granada, and that was a very immersive and interesting experience for us all! I think my Spanish skills improved, my interpersonal skills improved, and I had the best summer of my life (: We also did ceramics, flamenco, and language sessions for 2 weeks in a small town named Guadix. There, I was able to explore the town at night with friends and it was truly magical. To be in a new place and breathe the air and experience life and love and friendship was so incredibly special. Also, my leaders on the trip were super knowledgeable and cool!

My favorite part of the program was the 2 weeks we spent in Guadix because I just felt so much personal growth. In a language class activity, we had to ask locals for directions to a "secret" place (the house of a famous artist) and it was so strange to see strangers stop their day and help a group of Americans to find a seemingly random place. A lady we encountered actually waved to a moving car, motioned for the driver to stop, and asked him if he could help us out. And he did! Incredible.

To future participants: Look at the Spanish sky; it's so unbelievably blue and beautiful. Take those siestas, the naps will do you good. Don't get distracted, focus on being in Spain and truly experiencing it. Make each moment last. Don't be afraid to speak Spanish. Listen to the history lessons and museum guides; Spanish history is one of the richest and most fascinating in the world! And last but not least, have fun!

How can this program be improved?
Spending some time in Barcelona would be incredible!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Sahil
10/10

A life changing opportunity!

I learned a lot and grew as an individual by traveling abroad to Spain through the Experiment. The group leaders, host families, and coordinators made this trip especially memorable for me. I not only learned more about myself and how independent I was traveling to another country, but I also was able to strengthen my Spanish skills greatly. This was an experience that I'll cherish and I'll never forget.

Yes, I recommend this program
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June
9/10

Unique Experience

The memories I made while abroad with the Experiment program are some that I will treasure for my entire life. The year leading up to this past summer was my first year taking legitimate Spanish and my excitement in the classroom stayed with me when I went abroad. My home stay situation was not what I expected, but it made my experience all the better. My host family made my integration into a new country flawless, and provided me with a sense of belonging. With them I was able to grow as a person academically, and mentally. The month I spent in Spain has impacted my life in so many ways, and I am grateful I had the opportunity to go.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Emily
10/10

Las Maravillas de España

The few days before the others on my program and I would inevitably meet at the airport to travel to Spain, I was overwhelmed with nerves. I kept wondering: what was in store in the upcoming month? As soon as I met my leaders and peers, my jitters instantly melted away. The leaders made me feel so incredibly welcome and comfortable. Our group would soon turn into a family by the end of the month. Not only was my group amazing, but so were all the planned activities that we did together. I can't even name all of the fun activities that we did! We went on a graffiti scavenger hunt, explored the Alhambra, participated in language classes, did community service in Guadix, and traversed the beautiful landscapes of Castril. What made this trip so meaningful was that I got to do all of these wonderful things with my best friends.

How can this program be improved?
While we were boarding at the school, there weren't great food options, especially for vegetarians.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Lynn-Tyia
10/10

The Experience of the Experiment

Studying abroad in Spain was a dream come true. Not only did I make new unbreakable bonds with my group and our group leaders, but I gained a new family through my home stay experience. While in Spain, I became more confident with speaking more Spanish and becoming a more open minded person. Along the way, I became stronger and grew familiar with the Spanish tradition that I now make an effort to incorporate into my daily life. On this trip, I got the opportunity to see things that I have never seen before and I got to immerse myself in a culture I want to become more familiar with. Last but not least, I was given the chance of a life time that has made me a better individual. This was my first time going abroad and I will forever be grateful to the Experiment, my friends and family, and other people who made this happen for me.

How can this program be improved?
If people enjoy the home stay as much as I did, they should be given the opportunity to stay longer if possible.
Yes, I recommend this program

About The Experiment in International Living

The Experiment in International Living is the most experienced provider of summer abroad programs for high school students. For more than 85 years, our immersive programs have allowed participants to explore the world in an authentic and impactful...