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New Spanish immersion child care academy opens

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- A new child care center is focusing on immersing children in Spanish at a very young age.

Mi Escuelita Bilingual Christian Academy's grand opening was Monday.

Founder Camila Contreras said the younger students start learning to speak a different language, the better.

"We've had kids who started at 3 or 4 years old, and they've never been exposed to it, like not even with Dora. They come here and within months they're doing their ABCs, saying a couple words and things like that," she said.

Mi Escuelita is a Spanish immersion center, not a bilingual center, meaning all they speak with the children is Spanish.

"They're listening to it and talking between peers in Spanish the whole time, and we are also Christian based and do a Christian curriculum," Contreras said.

Every teacher is fluent in both Spanish and English.

Contreras said the school will be a great resource, not only for Latino parents but also for non-Hispanics who want their children to be more well-rounded and prepared for life.

In fact, almost all of the children enrolled are native English speakers.

"If I start using signs or pointing at things... If we're trying to draw a hand, I have to point at the hand, or if I do an example, they may not get it right away. But we try to give them an idea of what, say 'mano' means. Then they'll start drawing a hand."

The school also has security cameras in every room, and parents can download an app that shows them those cameras.

The password-sensitive app lets you always know what your children are learning.

Contreras said immersion works and will benefit children later in life.

"I've seen the benefits it's given me for my career, and I wish nothing but the same for my kids."

Mi Escuelita is still enrolling.

To find out more about it, call (901) 270-4132.