Spanish at Greenspring Montessori School is oriented to present an introduction to the language and culture of Spanish speaking countries. It is designed to enable the students to communicate in Spanish in simple, everyday conversations and acts as a stepping stone to the next level of study. Students learn basic and meaningful vocabulary and phonetics, they are introduced to the fundamentals of grammar, begin to read and write in Spanish, and gain cultural awareness so they develop a greater understanding of the world in which they live in.
The Spanish Spring 2020 Curriculum presents the details of activities that take place during Spanish Enrichment time. The program, in general, focuses on the three modes of communication: interpretive, interpersonal and presentational. The proficiency level of the students is expected to range between novice-mid to intermediate-mid on the ACTFL scale. Students learn various thematic units, use basic vocabulary and phrases and interact in various social situations. In addition, students develop an awareness of the distinct cultures, traditions, and celebrations of the Spanish-speaking world.
Children’s House students explore Spanish using songs, games, finger plays, stories, short activities and specific lessons to build on vocabulary and exposure to the Spanish language and culture in the Spanish speaking world. For the Dual-Language classrooms, the third-year students have a half-hour of dedicated Spanish in addition to the regular lessons given by the assistant. The second-trimester curriculum starts with a brief review of greetings, feelings, and common expressions, followed by working with materials that present different parts of the body, parts of the house, and ending with the weather and clothing. It is expected that during the second trimester of the year Children’s House students will be exposed to vocabulary and songs that help them learn and use previously learned vocabulary to:
- Recognize the different parts of the body and face
- Answer to the question ¿Qué es esto?
- Be able to name different parts of a house.
- Answer to the questions ¿Cuántos (cuántas) hay? And ¿Dónde está el/la…?
- Identify some words to refer to the weather.
- Recognize some basic words to talk about clothing.
- Answer to Qué, Dónde and Cuántos questions
The songs that we sing with the children are mostly from the music groups Cantoalegre ( https://www.youtube.com/user/ccantoalegre/featured ) and Cantajuego (https://www.youtube.com/user/CantaJuegoVEVO)
Lower Elementary students explore Spanish using TPR (Total Physical Response – created by James Asher), and specific lessons to acquire new vocabulary and to practice what they learned in Children’s House. Students are also exposed to some of the different cultures and traditions found in the Spanish speaking world. At this level, since movement is the key, comprehension comes first, and then, there is a point where students are ready to talk, to read, and eventually, ready to write. Each lesson starts with a short chanting activity that is useful to review vocabulary and to transition the students into the Spanish time. It is expected that during the second trimester of the year Lower Elementary students will:
- Review expressions of courtesy and basic communication in the classroom and basic commands to move around campus and in the classroom
- The Spanish alphabet and special sounds
- Recognize and use words and short sentences to name parts of a house, the weather, and some clothing.
- Continue working with opposites and contrasts.
- Read short sentences or paragraphs and identify what they are about.
- Be able to ask simple questions to gather information.
Upper Elementary students explore Spanish using TPR & TPR Storytelling, and through specific lessons and mini-projects to acquire new vocabulary and to practice what they learned in previous years. Students are also exposed to some of the beliefs, food, and traditions of the people from different Spanish speaking countries. During the second trimester of the school year, students will review and practice basic commands and work with materials to understand the function of words. It is expected that during the first trimester of the year Upper Elementary students will:
- Review expressions of courtesy in Spanish
- Review the alphabet and special sounds.
- Understand the main idea and some information in short texts.
- Start creating sentences and a series of sentences to tell a short story about their life, activities, events, and other experiences.
The Adolescent Community Spanish curriculum focuses on strengthening the interpretive, interpersonal, and presentational communication skills, providing the basis to better prepare students for the high school world language sequence. Students learn various thematic units, use basic vocabulary and phrases and interact in various social situations. In addition, students develop an awareness of the distinct cultures, traditions, and celebrations of the Spanish-speaking world. Adolescent Community students will learn the language in a more traditional way, with a variety of activities to promote a successful learning experience. Each set of lessons presents new vocabulary words pertaining to a particular theme. Each topic is first presented in context and then the vocabulary is further practiced through a variety of activities. All the students are encouraged to have an active participation. It is expected that during the second trimester of the year Adolescent Community students will review, learn, and practice:
- Expressions of courtesy and basic communication in the classroom
- Uses of personal pronouns
- The alphabet and special sounds
- Working with paragraph-length texts to follow the main message, sometimes in various time frames.
- Working with audio files to understand the main idea and flow of events expressed in various time frames in songs, conversations, and discussions.
- Writing sentences or paragraphs to present information on a variety of familiar and some concrete researched topics.