The Spanish Program at Junipero Serra School is dynamic, engaging and allows students to participate in their learning experience. Their curiosity and interest are awakened as students become familiar with words, expressions, and aspects of Spanish culture. Most importantly, they are active learners who are encouraged to build upon their previous knowledge, use critical thinking skills and receive preparation to participate in a multicultural society.
The curriculum is relevant to the trends, approaches, and strategies currently being used in high performing classrooms. While the cognitive benefits of bilingualism are well-documented, bilingual learners nurture a greater understanding of their native language than their mono-lingual peers. Students in grades K-3 participate in activities relevant to their immediate world, including hands-on experiences, the use of different strategies and opportunities for movement. Also, by using the Total Physical Response (TPR) approach, students’ comprehension is maximized through an engaging and enjoyable method of learning. Students in Grades 4-8 are encouraged to use concrete-thinking and problem-solving skills in class. They are given strategies for studying and are introduced to more complex elements of the Spanish language. They become aware of grammar rules, verb conjugations and other elements that establish the foundations of Spanish language. This preparation is essential for any future decisions to continue studying the language in high school and college. The goal therefore is to achieve fluency, both written and spoken, through further study of the Spanish language.