February 9, 2016
Do you remember your foreign language class in high school? Maybe you chose a name from the language you were studying – Collette, Pablo or Fredrick. You probably learned the alphabet, counted to 20, and practiced a few phrases that still come to you now and then. But if we’re honest, few of us mastered the language.
Times have changed. Kindergarten students are now learning a foreign language by immersion, a method in which the entire class is taught is in a non-native language and fluency is happening by 4th or 5th grade. Wow!
Now, this exciting immersion into another language is happening at King’s Schools. This fall, King’s will add to its elementary program a Spanish immersion option. This distinctive approach allows young children to acquire fluency in a second language in the same way they learned English. Our Spanish Immersion class gives elementary students an opportunity to complete the curriculum in a nontraditional way – by immersing themselves in the Spanish language from kindergarten through sixth grade. Students become proficient in both Spanish and English, while learning the same curriculum content as their peers in the traditional English classrooms.
Although it seems new, immersion programs have existed in the United States for over 40 years, although the most dramatic growth in the number of programs has occurred over the past 15 years. Research indicates that by the end of 5th grade, students generally score noticeably higher in math and literacy on standardized tests than students in traditional programs.
Just look what the studies show!
- Positive effects in cognitive development and intellectual growth
- Fosters cross-cultural understanding and encourages engagement in global conversations
- Proficiency and depth in the Spanish language
- Acquisition of a native-like pronunciation when learning a language at an early age
- Produces successful learners who perform well on standardized tests
- Increased career opportunities where communication skills in Spanish are an asset
The world is getting smaller and King’s students will be ready for it! Learn more by visiting http://kingsschools.org/elementary/spanish-immersion-faqs/.