World Languages

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience. The language profiles of students in PYP schools may be complex and diverse; however, the influence of mother-tongue development is significant for all learners. It is acknowledged that development of mother-tongue language is crucial for cognitive development, and in maintaining cultural identity. An integral part of the IB Program is to foster “International Mindedness” and initiate a lifelong love for both mother-tongue and foreign language learning. Children are taught to appreciate other cultures through the study of their language and traditions, thereby encouraging more understanding and awareness. Every learner benefits from having access to different languages, and, through that access, to different cultures and perspectives. Acquisition of more than one language enriches personal development and helps facilitate international-mindedness.  In order to develop multicultural awareness and gain a global perspective, students study two Foreign Languages at The Discovery School: Spanish and French.

Program Overview

Spanish is taught to the Primary, Lower Elementary and Upper Elementary classes. These classes occur once a week for Primary (3s, 4s, and Ks) for 30 minutes and twice a week for Lower Elementary and Upper Elementary for 50 minutes. French is also taught once a week at the Lower Elementary and Upper Elementary levels. All classes are held in the centrally located in the Library Commons in Building 4.

The World Languages Program strives to initiate a long sequence of foreign language learning beginning in the early grades, thus promoting proficiency in the target language. By teaching foreign languages at a critical age/sensitive period for language acquisition the children are very receptive to trying out the new sounds. An additional benefit is that it helps students make connections between multiple languages. It is important to prepare students to compete in the global economy, as well provide a meaningful context for developing multicultural awareness and a more global perspective. Another goal is to strengthen the language competency of Spanish and/or French speaking students. We encourage students to develop and maintain skills in the foreign languages, following the FLES (Foreign Languages in the Elementary Schools) standards and IB PYP Program. By introducing students to the culture and celebrations of Latin American countries and France, we increase their cultural sensitivity.

Primary-K Learner Outcomes

  • Use and respond to greetings and introductions

  • Become familiar with vocabulary for days of the week, months of the year, seasons, weather, numbers, shapes, colors, daily routines, family members, animals, body parts, likes and dislikes, and food

Lower Elementary Learner Outcomes

  • Memorize and use vocabulary for days of week, months of the year, seasons, weather, family vocab, daily routines, colors, numbers, house vocab, school vocab, animals, places in the community, and landforms

  • Incorporate -AR verbs, IR+A+infin, and me gutsa into vocabulary to speak phrases and sentences

  • Use common expressions and share emotions

  • Understand written passages

  • Act out short dialogues

  • Students write short paragraphs to reinforce grammar lessons

  • Participate in “El Pueblo de Discovery” day where they use oral skills to communicate with various Places in the Community; La Escuela, El Supermercado, etc

Upper Elementary Outcomes

  • Students learn about the culture of Spanish speaking countries through the study of their traditions and celebrations

  • Communicate their likes, about their families, their hobbies and emotions

  • Read and act out plays written in the target language

  • Watch videos and programs in Spanish and French and discuss what they comprehend

  • Write stories using present tense verbs, adjectives and nouns that they have learned

  • Work with more complex grammatical rules, such as : Tenery Que+ Infinitive, Ir + A+ Infinitive and Question words

  • Learn vocabulary for Landforms, La Clase, Body parts, Clothing and La Casa

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