Language Adventure Camps

Language in the Wild! Prescott, AZ Edition! 

Thank you for your interest in our camps! Registration for this camp is now closed. 


After three incredible years of outdoor language learning adventures at our base camp in Idaho, we're finally taking our innovative approach on language learning on the road! 

First stop: Lynx Lake in beautiful Prescott, Arizona!

You're invited! Join us for this fun-filled 4-day / 3-night , language-rich camping adventure (yes, 100% Chinese immersion the whole time!), where language learning and culture are seamlessly woven throughout the many outdoor skill-building activities and adventures.

Our experienced program staff (from Arizona, Utah, and Idaho) are fresh off a wildly popular Language in the Wild STARTALK summer program, where students from 17 different states joined us for 100% Chinese immersion two-week sessions. We have had so many requests for us to offer more programs, and are thrilled to finally be able to create a program customized to the beautiful terrain of Prescott, AZ!

 Space is limited; register and reserve your spot now!

The Basics 

Date: October 2-5 

Location: Lynx Lake, Prescott, AZ

Attendee Numbers:  Just 21 spots! 

Attendee Qualifications: Currently in grade 6-9 with a novice-high or above Chinese proficiency. 

Drop-off/Pick up: Students will be responsible for transportation to the camp location; we will help coordinate carpools upon request. If transportation is a concern please contact us directly. 

Price: $750. 

Price Includes: A 5:1 student to teacher ratio, all outdoor adventure equipment and tools, all food and lodging, a t-shirt, Chinese nature journal, and much more (obviously!) . 


The Details 

Who is the camp for?

Our camps are for anyone who wants an awesome wilderness adventure while using and growing their language skills with veteran instructors and friends both new and old.

This fall break camp is designed for Chinese language learners grade 6-8 with about a novice-high or above Chinese proficiency (this camp is not suitable for beginners as we will operate 100% in Mandarin Chinese). Students in a language immersion program will find it to be a perfect opportunity to expand their language proficiency beyond anything they've experienced in a classroom. Learners in traditional secondary language programs or heritage speakers will find our immersion setting, experienced teachers, and outdoor activities to be a powerful combination for acquiring and using new language at a variety of levels.  We are a coed camp, though boys and girls sleep in different areas and in their own tents. 


Sleeping Arrangement

Our program provides large bell tents that can comfortably sleep 16+ campers, however we only assign a maximum of 11 campers in each tent.

We ask you to bring your own sleeping pad and sleeping bag—though we can provide you both pad and sleeping bag if requested before camp. (Just let us know ahead of time.)

Our camp staff sleep in separate tents right next to the campers. 




Who We Are

Language in the Wild Camps are organized and directed by Eric Chipman and Brinn Bagley. Eric and Brinn have worked for 14 years in the world of education, outdoor adventure summer camps, language teaching programs and Chinese dual immersion.

For this camp we are so happy to be teaming up with two amazing Arizona based teachers: Wanting Wang and Enrique Rivera, both fabulous and experienced teachers who we taught alongside at our STARTALK summer program. All instructors have been trained in wilderness first-aid and are state certified language teachers. Eric Chipman is a certified wilderness first-responder, lifeguard, and rock climbing instructor. 

See our staff page for more information

Language in the Wild Core Objectives

 Language in the Wild - Prescott, AZ will focus on (3) core LITW objectives: 


  • Display and illustrate an understanding of wildlife, natural systems, and wilderness skills.
  • Identify and explain the natural and agricultural themes inherent in the Chinese language and culture. 
  • Collaborate to solve group challenges while negotiating for meaning 100% in Chinese across all camp contexts.

We align our curriculum with the following (5) intersecting sets of standards:

  • ACTFL (American Council for Teaching Foreign Languages) World-Readiness Standards of Learning Languages
  • NCSSFL-ACTFL Intermediate Can-Do Statements
  • NAAEE (North American Association of Environmental Education) K-12 Environmental Education: Guidelines for Excellence 
  • Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ School-Based Outdoor Skills Education Standards
  • Next Generation Science Standards

Every camp attendee is given a Language in the Wild custom nature journal with specific "Can-Do" statements derived from our core objectives and intersecting standards. Camp instructors work with each camper individually to pass off these different can-do statements throughout the camp—these can-do statements include outdoor wilderness skills, language skills, Chinese culture concepts, earth science understandings, social/community goals, and personalized "can-do" goals for each camper. The custom nature journal includes resources and guides for gaining the skill necessary to accomplish all our camps objectives. Each day will also include structured but independent time for attendees to explore the natural world, play field games with new friends, and extend their practice of specific skills. 


Outdoor Skills and Activities

No previous experience with any outdoor skills is required to attend our program, though we can differentiate our activities for those with previous experience. With all our activities we integrate Chinese cultural comparisons and perspectives to broaden and deepen campers' understanding of the target language and culture in domains rarely encountered through formal study.  Some of our activities include the following:

  • Camping
  • Outdoor camp cooking (including Chinese food!)
  • Lashing/Knot tying
  • Shelter building
  • First Aid/CPR
  • Outdoor Rock climbing
  • Canoeing/Kayaking
  • Lake Activities
  • Swimming
  • Wood carving
  • Hiking
  • Animal identification 
  • Plant identification and foraging
  • Mapmaking
  • Orienteering Quests!
  • Astronomy/Star gazing
  • Nature journaling & sketching
  • Fire starting
  • Chinese board games (Chinese Chess, Go, and Mahjong)
  • Tai-chi, Yoga, 
  • Jianzi, diabolo, and bamboo dancing
  • Basketweaving
  • Archery
  • Outdoor Nature Games (we call them Coyote Games)

Daily Routines and Camp Structure

Our camp will have 21 total campers. We strategically divide these campers into three groups of seven based on age, maturity, language proficiency, and background knowledge. These groups of seven campers are guided by a veteran Chinese teacher as they rotate through activity centers throughout the day.

Every morning starts with a routine of exercise and breakfast. Groups take turns working with an instructor to prepare the meals (both Chinese and western camp food). After breakfast we gather as a whole group to discuss the objectives and activities of the day, review vocabulary and safety instructions, and establish expectations. 

Campers spend the majority of the day rotating through learning and activity centers in small groups working independently and as a group with their instructor as a coach to be able to pass off that center's can-do's. Campers have structured independent time every afternoon to play games, explore in small groups, read our many Chinese nature books, continue projects from the day, extend skills, or swim in the lake.

Each night after dinner, we gather for a whole group Coyote game, and close with a fire circle where we tell stories, act out Chinese folktales, sing custom Chinese campfire songs, reflect on the day, and finish the night learning about the stars.  

Target Language 

All participants, staff, and instructors commit to communicating throughout the camp in Mandarin Chinese 100% of time. We've found that 100% is actually much easier to execute than 80% , where there is no question in each moment of what language to speak. The remote, natural setting allows us to almost entirely retreat from the English speaking world and truly immerse our minds into Chinese. With about 45 hours of concentrated and super supported Chinese communication, campers will find their language proficiency improve over the course of the camp. 

It is important that all attendees understand that when they apply for this camp they are committing to the 100% Chinese challenge. It's very important that everyone in attendance commits to this goal together. We do allow campers to communicate in English when they retire to their tents at night, and certainly if an emergency arises we will switch to English. 

Location and Camp Sites

After a long hot summer, campers will enjoy the cool fall mountain air of Prescott. We have a group camp site with electricity, running water, a pavilion, and toilets at Lynx Lake. The site is removed from other campers, and is surrounded by beautiful Ponderosa Pines (which we are so excited to incorporate into our activities). It is a short walk to Lynx Lake and the many surrounding hiking trails. 

We will have a large van for some excursions away from camp, including rock climbing at some local Prescott rock climbing crags. 

Lynx Lake is about an hour and forty minutes drive from Phoenix area. 


Campers are responsible for arrival at camp on October 2nd and pick-up on October 5th. At registration please tell us if you're interested in carpooling with other attendees, and we will coordinate a carpool contact list for you to find rides with other parents or guardians. 

If transportation is a major concern for you, please contact us directly. We may be able to work something out for your camper. 

Cellphones and Technology use

A valuable benefit of a camping trip is how it can provide a much needed break from screens and phones. Our vision is that attendees can fully enjoy this benefit and agree to lock their phones safely away during the camp, able access the device for any emergency. We recognize the challenge this will be for attendees, but we are excited for them to experience several days phone free in the outdoors. From our experience, campers will be shocked how satisfying it is to be free from the constant demand of their devices. They will be given time at the end of camp to access their phone. Additionally, camp leaders will be updating parents/guardians on activities regularly via our See-Saw app account. We also ask students not to bring any other device such as tablets, mp3 players, headphones, headphones with storage, etc. If you need an exemption from this policy for medical reasons, etc, you can request an exemption in the registration. 

Outdoor Education!

Designed to provide learners with a sustained full-immersion, outdoor adventure environment, this 4-day camp will support our camp attendees, helping them grow their proficiency and confidence in the language while enjoying the short and long-term benefits of outdoor education. 

Getting into and staying in the "zone" with their language for four days in a row, while encountering and navigating all kinds of new vocabulary, physical and mental challenges, unique settings and life lived fully in the wild, leads to a kind of growth, development, and memories that will last a lifetime.

Campers will be provided with opportunities to step outside their comfort zone, take on responsibility and leadership roles, learn about and connect with the natural world around them, and of course, there will be plenty of silly campfire stories, sticky smores fingers, and quiet moments with the stars.

"School performance increases when children learn outdoors. Research has documented increased standardized test scores, enhanced attitude about school, improved in-school behavior, and overall enhanced student achievement when students learn in and about nature. In addition, outdoor education effectively employs a greater range of children’s intelligences. Many researchers contribute the increase in performance to increased relevance and hands-on experience of learning outdoors." Charles, C. (2010)

Let's go camping!