Beginning in our Preschool and continuing through the Fifth Grade, the Spanish language comes to life through songs, games, stories and dramatic play. Students are introduced to basic vocabulary and grammatical concepts with an emphasis on communication skills. The Hispanic culture is also examined and students learn that it is not only diverse and unique, but it is also very much an integral part of the language itself.
Pre-School and Kindergarten
Spanish in the Pre-school and Kindergarten areas begins at a very introductory level. Basic words and phrases are introduced through a thematic approach. Instruction is presented through the use of props, visual aids, songs, and movement supporting the belief that fun, stress-free learning creates retention and positive attitudes towards second-language learning.
First and Second Grades
Spanish is still presented at an introductory level in these two primary grades but at a faster pace and with a greater quantity and variety of vocabulary. Music, games, and dramatic play are methods utilized in the instruction and students maintain an in-class notebook of their vocabulary words. The first written work is introduced and sound-word identification is practiced.
In the Third Grade there is a greater emphasis on conversation and communication skills. Previously learned vocabulary is utilized and expanded upon and correct pronunciation is stressed through the introduction of the Spanish Alphabet and its sounds. Reading and writing skills are practiced as well as oral-aural competencies. The geographical location of the Spanish-speaking world is studied as are new cultural concepts related to the Hispanic people.
Communication and conversation skills are stressed at this level as students utilize previously learned words and structures and new ones are added to their vocabulary. There is continued study of correct pronunciation skills, and grammatical concepts are presented, practiced and compared to the English language. Games, hands-on projects, and songs are just a few ways that language is presented to aid in the retention and enjoyment of this language learning experience. Cultural concepts are discussed and native speakers are invited to discuss their language and culture as often as possible.
The fifth grade year consists of an emphasis on communication skills. The use of the foreign language in the classroom is stressed, and reading, writing, pronunciation and comprehension skills are emphasized throughout the year. New grammatical structures are stressed such as noun-adjective agreement and verb basics. Hispanic geography will be expanded upon, and cultural differences and similarities will be discussed. During the last semester the students study the history of the pinnate and design and create their own pints to be used at the “Farewell Fiesta” held at the end of the year.