Spanish is everywhere! An estimated 400 million people from 21 countries around the world speaks Spanish as a native language. Here on the border, international trade is part of daily life; therefore, Spanish is heard daily. Students who study a second language achieve higher in the areas of reading and language arts. It provides more opportunities to engage with the community. Learning another language develops an appreciation for other cultures, fosters a sense of friendship and diversity awareness, and provides a wider global perspective. Knowing a second language also strengthens creativity, divergent thinking and mental flexibility.
At St. Marks, Spanish classes are taught at all levels, from Pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade by specialized instructors.
Elementary Spanish Program
At St. Mark’s, we immerse our students in the Spanish language once a week for Pre-Kindergarten students, and twice a week K – 5th grade students. For students in the lower elementary, Spanish classes are taught to gain exposure to the language and the culture, to build vocabulary and basic language use, and gain confidence in speech and listening skills. This is done through a variety of methods, such as songs, games, and oral and written activities. The students in the higher Elementary grades are introduced to grammatical structures of the Spanish language and continue to learn more vocabulary. These courses provide students a foundation in Spanish reading and speaking comprehension.
Middle School Spanish Program
The 6th and 7th grade students meet three times a week. These Spanish classes prepare a foundation in each of the four language skills of speaking, writing, reading and listening comprehension. Students learn new vocabulary and receive a strong grounding in grammar through a variety of activities. They also learn to employ previously studied language components to gain a greater understanding of the language. Oral communications skills are developed through conversation practice, situational dialogues, paired activities, listening activities, pronunciation drills and multiple opportunities to practice interpersonal communication in authentic situations. Greater emphasis is placed in building reading and writing skills than in earlier years of study. Students will continue to expand their vocabulary and verb conjugations including learning present and preterite tense. More time is spent writing and speaking in Spanish as students expand their vocabulary and knowledge of the language. Additional topics, such as Latino holidays and celebrations, may be included if time permits, to understand cultural practices and comparisons.
Spanish 1 - This course is a high school course for Spanish 1 credit. Topics include:
- Present tense conjugation including proper use of infinitives
- Discussion of Spanish speaking customs, culture, countries
- Emphasis on language production and reading comprehension
- Development of vocabulary and writing skills
- Introduction to preterite tense