Immersion 5K Registration
Happy New Year, and welcome back to school for 2020--a year to continue improving our vision. As the new year begins, we also begin preparing for 5K immersion registration. The online registration site will open at 4:00 p.m., February 18th. We will also have parent information meetings at the following times:
Here is a link to the informational flyer.
Here is a link to the website where registration will take place.
German Center of Excellence
Lexington One was recently awarded the honor of being named a German Center of Excellence. This national honor recognizes districts with exceptional curriculum, highly qualified teachers, and a growing and thriving German program. The American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) said this about our program, "The jury was impressed in particular that the German program is so very well established and growing. There is clear evidence that the program has strong support from the administration, professional colleagues, parents and students, and has strong ties to the wider community." They also went on to praise our curriculum, and the value we place on student feedback saying, "This is truly a program that is designed to meet the needs of students." We are so proud of all of our immersion programs, and are especially pleased to have our German program become nationally recognized.
These students from GES are describing a project they made on landforms in science. Notice their beautiful accents as well as their knowledge of science content and their creativity in the creation of landforms out of play doh. Great job girls, and thank you Sra. Arias for providing fun opportunities for students to show their knowledge of science and language.
Hear also what these middle school french immersion students have to say about immersion and what a great experience it is for them. If you have friends or neighbors who are contemplating registering for 5K, feel free to share this link with them as well. Thank you Mlle. Hamner for highlighting your students' points of view.
RBHS has recently created a partnership with a sister school, St. Martine de France in Paris, France. Students from St. Martine will visit RBHS in February 2020, and RBHS students will visit St. Martine in April of 2020. Students from St. Martine sent videos to our students and our students are now creating videos to send back. We also received this photo collage from St. Martine to help our students know what to expect when they arrive in Paris. Lexington One also has the following sister schools: Blaise Pascal in Clermont Ferrand, France, Adolfinum Gymnasium in Bückeburg, Germany and No. 1 Middle School in Chengdu, China.
Immersion Completer Guidelines
Last week I had the honor of advocating for our students on Capitol Hill. Educators from 44 states assembled in Washington D.C. through our national language conference. We met with senators and representatives and asked them to support funding for World Language programs. As I was advocating for your children and our school district, I thought of you since you are your child's biggest advocate. Thank you for trusting Lexington District One to give your child a world class immersion education.
I am pleased to offer you a tool that will help you continue to advocate for your children on their immersion journey. As they enter middle and high school, you will be faced with many decisions about which courses to take. We want you to have clarity as you make those choices, and to understand what it means to be considered an Immersion Completer upon graduation.
These official guidelines explain how students qualify as Immersion Completers. This process is similar to all Center of Study completion guidelines, and will go into effect for the current 2019-2020 academic year. We are publishing the guidelines now so that students graduating this year will have time to follow up if they feel that they should be recognized but do not meet the minimum requirements. We also want current middle schoolers to plan well for high school so that they will be recognized when they graduate as well.
Elementary immersion teachers gathered for Professional Learning in November. We focused on activities to get students talking, and that also motivate kids to have fun with language. Teachers gave feedback on performance assessments that will be integrated with science. This will help teachers assess student language growth and prepare students for the types of integrated performance assessments (IPAs) that they will be getting in middle and high school.
Dr. Liza Speece, World Languages and Partial Immersion Coordinator
How is my child doing in immersion?
As an immersion parent myself, I am concerned not only that my son is learning math and science, but that he is becoming more fluent in French. I am excited, now that he is in third grade, that he will be tested for the first time in all four language skills of French: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. Why am I looking forward to a test? Because the STAMP test is a STAndards-based Measurement of Proficiency. That means it is a nationally recognized instrument that will help me understand how my son is progressing in his language skills.
Starting in the third grade, all immersion students begin taking the STAMP test and are tested each Spring through the 12th grade. This test does not affect students' grades; however, it gives us a chance to measure the progress of immersion students' language development. It also helps us assess the success of our immersion program. The state of SC also accepts STAMP scores to award the Seal of Biliteracy (see the October update for info on the Seal of Biliteracy).
In the picture below you will see a data dive with PHES administrators and immersion teachers. Data dives give us the opportunity to look closely at student scores from the previous school year, to set goals for improvement for the current year. Across the nation, immersion students typically score higher on listening skills than the other four; however, we are seeing an increase in reading, writing and speaking skills and we continue to focus on improving instruction.
It's exciting to see how our students are growing in their language skills. Thank you for valuing bilingualism and biliteracy. It is a valuable gift for your child's future. If you have further questions about STAMP testing, your child's scores, or anything to do with your child's development, his or her teacher should be able to help you. You can always send me an email as well.
Amanda Hajji, Teacher Support Specialist for World Languages
Students speak Mandarin in the classroom.
We love when we get to see students speaking and having fun in the language. The videos below show students problem solving and competing in Ms. Li's class on a tower-building activity. You can also see the partnership RBHS and MGE have formed through book buddies, and hear students doing math in Mandarin!
Carolina Springs Middle School teachers implement Capturing Kid's Hearts training in the classroom by encouraging students to share good things going on in their lives. This practice serves to build a welcoming school community and make each child feel appreciated. See how Sra. Zimmerman's class does "Cosas Buenas" where students are sharing good news with their classmates in Spanish! This welcoming environment that has been created through Capturing Kid's Hearts encourages students to take risks with the second language. Sra. Mayride's students presented research projects on Uruguay and Paraguay in Spanish.
Sra Rapio's Spanish immersion class at Gilbert High School is studying the topic: Identifying Strengths. To do so, they created an illustrated story in class, in which they told the story of a character who had to use his/her strengths to overcome conflict. Each student shared their stories with the class.
Rapio's students also practiced grammatical forms with the activity "Running in Circles" where they went on a scavenger hunt around the classroom. This was a fun and active competition to practice grammar and meaning.
Opportunities for Students
Fall is upon us and with the start of a new season, come new opportunities. High school juniors and seniors are strongly encouraged to apply for the South Carolina Seal of Biliteracy. Immersion students stand a very good chance of earning the Seal as the lowest requirement is a proficiency level of Intermediate Mid (which is a 5 on STAMP) in all four areas, Reading, Speaking, Listening and Writing. They also must maintain a GPA of 3.0 in English, or ESOL students can earn a 4.0 composite score on WIDA. For more information, click here.
Last year is the first year the Seal was offered in SC, and we had 103 students who qualified! Let's beat that number this year. The picture above shows RBHS students who earned the seal last year. Many were immersion students. Hard work pays off!
Opportunities for Parents
Dr. Speece, the Coordinator for World Languages and Immersion, will be offering two informational sessions in October for immersion parents who want to learn more about the program. She will share what opportunities your children will have as they get older, and tips for supporting your students in immersion (K-12). They will be held on October 23rd from 8-9 am and October 24th from 12-1 pm at Central Services in the Staff Development Room. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have specific questions, or if there are topics you'd like to discuss at future meetings, feel free to email in advance.
Immersion Program Highlights
We would like to welcome our new Elementary French Immersion teacher, Mme. Villalobos Machado!
Mme. Villalobos Machado will be teaching third grade immersion at Midway Elementary. She and her family are from Venezuela, and lived most recently in Panama. Her husband is teaching French at LHS and her sons are attending LHS. They are all trilingual speaking English, Spanish and French! Bienvenue!!
Take a look at all the fun beginning of the year activities going on at Midway!
Meadow Glen Elementary hosted a night for parents to learn more about bilingualism in partnership with the USC Chapter of Bilingualism Matters. If other schools are interested in hosting similar events, contact Dr. Bauer at USC email@example.com.
Meadow Glen Middle is exploring in the Passport curriculum with its students!
The MGMS immersion team, including Senegalese M. Ousmane Fall, is providing opportunities for students to learn about the history, politics, geography and literature in Senegal! Students are currently learning about African Griots and will be working towards creating their own folklore in the Senegalese style by also incorporating a few words in the native tongue of M. Fall, Wolof!
Students identifying the presidents of Senegal!
Gilbert High school has received its first class of 9th grade Spanish immersion students! It is so exciting to watch our programs and our students grow! Sra. Rapio moved from LMS this year to GHS to teach Spanish and Spanish immersion. She recently presented at the Lexington One Summer Institute on incorporating a workshop model into the Spanish classroom, and has worked closely with her digital learning coach to integrate meaningful technology into the classroom.
Did you know...
...that in Lexington One Immersion schools, we have some 5th graders whose language proficiency could earn them the Seal of Biliteracy? Unfortunately, they are not eligible until their junior or senior year in high school, but what great motivation for our kids to stay with their immersion language, and even consider learning a third language in middle school or high school. The sky is the limit for our kids, especially since they are becoming multi-lingual.
Here are some options for continuing language study after high school...College and University Programs.
It's never too early to start thinking about the future.
There are also many options for studying abroad: Some from outside agencies (click here), and others that are lead by Lexington One teachers. PHMS is organizing a trip to the Galapagos Islands for 2021, and Riverbluff High School is working on an exchange with students in France that would allow French students to visit here, and our students to visit there. We will continue to post information and opportunities on this Immersion Updates Blog as they become available.
You can also follow us on Twitter @LOWLT or on Facebook Lexington One World Language Teachers.
A New School Year and New Leadership
Dear Immersion Parents,
I am pleased to introduce myself, Dr. Liza Speece, as the new Coordinator for World Languages and Dual Language Immersion. While I am new to this role, I am not new to Lexington One, or immersion. I began my Lexington One career as a third grade Spanish immersion teacher at Pleasant Hill Elementary. Then I became the World Language Teacher Support Specialist for the district, and I worked alongside our previous coordinator, Dawn Samples for several years. My son is also an immersion student, which means I understand this program from every possible angle.
Before coming to Lexington One I taught Elementary Spanish in a different district, at the University of SC, and at Columbia College and I teach as an adjunct professor for USC and College of Charleston. I am also proud to introduce our new World Language Teacher Support Specialist, Amanda Hajji. Amanda taught French at LHS for 8 years, as well as Yearbook; she has also served on a variety of boards and professional organizations in the World Languages community. I am so glad to have her on board!
You might have heard that we hosted our very first district wide Immersion Summer Camp in July: Passport to Adventure. We had 209 students studying all four immersion languages (Chinese, French, German, and Spanish) under one roof. There were 5 Spanish classes, 3 German, 2 French, and 2 Chinese. It was such a great success, we are already planning for next year! We'd especially like to see more involvement from MS and HS immersion students as classroom helpers. Check out pictures and performances here.
Immersion is such an incredible experience both for children and parents, but at times, it can also be confusing and challenging. I understand that, and it is my goal to keep you informed and make sure that you and your children have the best, most enriching experience possible. Thank you for trusting us with your children, and for believing that languages open doors.
Please check back here monthly for immersion updates and classroom highlights. You can also reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or in my office at 803-821-3812. I look forward to hearing from you.
Immersion Program Highlights
Maria Jose Sabillion and Yenobis Amundaray de Galan from RBES presented to a packed room at the National Dual Language Immersion Conference in Charlotte, NC. Attendees were taking notes, asking questions and snapping pictures of all of the great ideas and resources that Maria Jose and Yenobis shared. The title of their session was, "Strategies for Staying in the L2 in Grades 3-5," and they shared tips, strategies and resources for teaching Math and Science without resorting to English. There were over 50 other immersion teachers and administrators from around the world learning from our very own LexOne teachers. It was a VERY proud moment for us all.
Chinese Immersion teachers at MGES hosted another spectacular Chinese New Year celebration.
Kindergarten presented a play, The Story of the Chinese Zodiac. There are 12 Chinese zodiac signs, in the following order: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. Each sign is named after an animal, and each animal has its own unique characteristics. The story story reveals legendary reasons, and some of the characteristics of the 12 animals. It is widespread among Chinese. Though it is made up, it might be interesting for you to tell your children and friends.
First grade immersion performed a dance called Chinese Opera. Chinese Opera is a popular form of drama in China. It has gradually evolved over more than a thousand years.
Second grade performed a rap song call Counting Frogs, which integrated math, language, and music.
Third grade performed a dance called Exercise Song. It is an active dance to advocate for staying healthy.
Fourth grade performed Kong Fu Fan. Kong Fu Fan is the most popular Tai Chi Fan form ever practiced in China. There are 52 movements in the whole routine based on the characteristic Tai Chi posture with the fan's artistic and martial functions.
Fifth grade presented a song using sign language. This song is about a world full of love, which encourages everyone to follow their dreams with perseverance. Here is their introduction “We speak English. We speak Chinese. We use different languages to convey information. We also convey information without speaking, that is sign language.”
MGMS Chinese Immersion students have some exciting events coming up in February. Sixth grade immersion students will go on a field study trip to Charlotte True Buddha Temple and Seventh grade immersion will go to an Asian Market. These are such valuable experiences for students to understand cultural products and practices, as well as to motivate them in their language studies.
CSMS Immersion students will partner with all of the WL classes to present a Festival of Cultures. See flyer below. All are welcome to attend!
Immersion Year 2 at LHS will be examining the needs of their community and ways in which they can be of most use to those in need. Sra. Cormier-Bausch states, "To begin we will work on a collaborative project to bring awareness to the LHS population of our FIT (Food Improving Thinking) program. This will be a broadcast segment on the school’s daily video news in English and in Spanish!" It is great to see immersion students sharing their language skills with the entire school.
RBHS Chinese classes also hosted MGE students to celebrate Chinese New Year.
Immersion News and Important Updates
Former Pleasant Hill Elementary Immersion students who are graduating at LHS this year were recognized recently during the PHES Noche de la Familia event. Immersion students are shown here with their parents.
Dual Language Immersion Registration for 2019-20 5K Kindergarten will begin on February 20, 2019 online only at 4:00 p.m.
Parent information sessions will be held in late January and February and all information from the meetings and how to register will also be updated online soon HERE. Information regarding the parent information sessions will be sent out via Peachjar and posted on the web.
HIGH SCHOOL IMMERSION
The Office of Standards and Learning at the South Carolina Department of Education is pleased to announce the State Board of Education’s approval for the South Carolina Seal of Biliteracy, an award that recognizes students who have attained a functional level of proficiency in two languages (English and one other language) by graduation.
The South Carolina Seal of Biliteracy serves to certify attainment of biliteracy for students, employers, and universities. It is a statement of accomplishment that helps to signal evidence of a student’s readiness for career and college, and for engagement as a global citizen. The Office of Standards and Learning has provided a support document explaining all related guidelines for the South Carolina Seal of Biliteracy, as well as an application that must be used for students to earn the award.
SC Department of Education Supporting Documents:
South Carolina Seal of Biliteracy Overview and Guidelines: https://goo.gl/wuCUny
South Carolina Seal of Biliteracy Student Application: https://goo.gl/PXx4Ba
**If your child has not registered to apply for the Seal of Biliteracy with a teacher at school and would like to do so, please have them see a WL teacher or the WL department about how to apply online and provide the hard copy application to the district as soon as possible! **
For more information visit:
The National Seal of Biliteracy website: https://sealofbiliteracy.org
The South Carolina Department of Modern and Classical Languages:
Lexington One World Languages website: https://lexoneworldlanguages.weebly.com/
Look for information coming soon regarding...
Immersion Program Highlights
Yenobis Amundaray de Galan, 4th grade teacher at RBES, recently created a collaboration through the program, Skype a Scientist (https://www.skypeascientist.com/). Skype a Scientist matches scientists with classrooms around the world! Scientists skype into the classroom for 30-60 minute Q and A sessions that can cover the scientist’s expertise or what it’s like to be a scientist. This was a perfect match for our elementary immersion classroom, since the students are already learning math and science in another language.
We also hosted a visit from the Goethe Institute recognizing DES as a PASCH School (Schools: Partners for the Future). The aim of PASCH is to create and strengthen a global network of partner schools with special links to Germany. The entire school participated in a STEM day, including a visit from a famous TV personality from Germany, who is similar to our Bill Nye the Science Guy. Throughout the rest of the day, students participated in STEM activities in their classrooms.
MES hosted a French author through the French Embassy in Atlanta. She visited the fourth and fifth grade immersion classes and read them a story she had written. Students received an unillustrated version, which they illustrated themselves, and then read aloud.
Neyibeth Gonzalez, 8th grade immersion teacher at PHMS, has created a website for parent communication. This is a fantastic way to stay in communication with parents so they can partner with us in our work with students. Click on the image below to view.
And here are a few moments from her recent classroom activities, which include a presentational speaking activity on a superhero they created for themselves, as well as "Baile Miércoles" (Dance Wednesday) in which students are exposed to songs and dances from Spanish speaking countries.
Marci Hite, also from PHMS, organized a visit from native Spanish speakers from the community to help her 6th grade immersion students practice their Spanish conversational skills. One of the volunteers stated, "Sra. Hite....congrats on the great job you did today....WE LOVED IT, and I do believe the students enjoyed it too. After the session, I chatted with some of the volunteers, and they were pleased to see the students speaking Spanish. There were also some emotional questions, questions that made us remember the beauty of our countries, our families, our food, and how we celebrate some holidays."
Also in middle school immersion, Dr. Todd Spaulding's 7th grade French immersion students at MGMS, recently finished video game presentations. Dr Spaulding states, "All the students were super motivated. Basically, we learned about the history of video games and certain genres. Then we learned what goes into a video game review (both written and video). The students then chose their favorite video game and wrote up a presentational speaking review of their game." Our teachers clearly strive to connect classroom learning to student interests, while also challenging students to improve their language acquisition.
Also, in a connection to the spooky month of October, we they read a Goosebumps book. Dr. Spaulding states, "They’re enjoying it, and learning a lot and creating a lot of visuals to show understanding."
Mandy Domenech, immersion teacher at WKHS, has been encouraging students to read a book of their choice. She explains, "We are at the final half of our unit of Self Identity and have begun our individual reading of a Spanish language novel. The photos below are of our “Book Tasting” of Spanish language young adult novels. They will use information gathered from sampling or “tasting” each book to decide which one they will choose for their independent reading of a novel. There will be vocabulary and grammar lessons pulled from what they read as well as interpersonal conversations and presentations (both written and spoken) based on the books they have chosen." What a personalized approach to language and literacy instruction!
It is hard to believe we are approaching the end of 2017-18! This year has been very busy and we have learned and grown a lot together. As the year comes to a close our students will be taking the STAMP test. This online proficiency assessment allows us to see how our students are doing in 4 communication skills, reading, listening, writing and speaking. This is not a test where students have to memorize facts or study for it per se. This assessment is interactive and students respond to prompts in a communicative manner, using skills they have learned throughout the year. This assessment helps us track how well we are progressing towards our language goals and also helps us in assuring rater reliability with our teachers. The more language your child can use, the more details they can provide and the more they can share information, the higher they will rate. Please encourage your child to show what they know! We sometimes find that our immersion students are so “to the point” getting across a message, that they don’t show how well they are capable of communicating and describing. For example, when you ask your child about their day, do they ever say “fine” or “okay” instead of giving you lots of detail about their day? We find that they sometimes respond very effectively and to the point, which is okay in some cases, but this type of response will not show their true ability to communicate in another language on this assessment. We know they can do SO MUCH, but we need to them to use lots of details and expand their thinking when they respond! We wish everyone good luck!! We know they will do great!
Immersion Program Updates
Registration is still open for rising 5 year old kindergartners to register for kindergarten and immersion in Lexington One! Please be sure to visit our registration page for more information! Parent information sessions were held in February. If you are interested in learning more about the registration process or have questions you can check out the information below, or contact the registrar, Harriet Cotterman, at email@example.com .
CLICK HERE FOR THE PARENT BROCHURE!
CLICK HERE TO REACH MORE DETAILED INFORMATION ON DUAL LANGUAGE IMMERSION REGISTRATION!
Middle School Updates
As we are nearing the end of the year, parents of middle school students will receive a letter, notifying you of your child’s current status in their course and what their projected placement will be for next year based on this year’s performance. Their final ratings will convert to numerical grades at the end of the year. The conversion scale can be found here. If you have questions about your child’s performance in class, or placement for next year please feel free to contact your teacher or reach out to us at central services (Dawn Samples firstname.lastname@example.org or Ryan Pool email@example.com). We will be happy to help!
High School Updates
As we are preparing for our rising senior immersion classes, we are planning to recognize them as immersion graduates! It is hard to believe they are graduating! We will be sharing more information with you soon as our plans are coming together.
We are working together across sites to continue planning for experiences for our students outside the immersion classroom! We have students who will be traveling abroad this summer to Spain and France to study! We also are working to connect more with classrooms abroad so our students will be able to communicate with students in other countries to collaborate and learn together!
If your child or your family is traveling abroad this summer or have exchanges or encounters with native speakers, please share your experience with us! You can share your travel pics with us via twitter @LOWLT, #lex1worldlanguagesrock or with us on our Facebook page. If you want to share with us directly please email us (Dawn Samples firstname.lastname@example.org or Liza Speece, email@example.com.) We would love to share your summer language experiences!
Immersion Program Highlights
GPS: Sra. Sancho, 2nd grade immersion at GPS shared the following exciting activities. She says, "I did a skype conference with second graders from a Costa Rican school named Escuela Jenaro Bonilla, both countries' students were very excited and communicated fluently in Spanish. Each student got a chance to answer a question and ask a question about their schools, country celebrations, favorite subject, etc.
It was an enriched cultural exchange activity, and also allowed my students to practice in a real life Spanish conversation.
Another activity was during science Topic Matter: Solids, liquids, and gases. We made a mix of liquid and solids by making the recipe of a traditional sweet treat of my countries' culture named cajeta (a mix condensed milk and coconut flakes). It was an enriched science standard-cultural exchange that they truly enjoyed.
Our DES immersion teachers joined PASCH teachers from across the United States and Canada to attend a German and STEM workshop at the Goethe-Institut in Washington from March 23 to March 25. They brainstormed ways to integrate STEM disciplines such as math, physics, biology and chemistry into their German lessons and collaborate with their colleagues. Cheers to our team for being a part of such a strongly supported international organization--your work with PASCH helps our German immersion students receive excellent instruction each day. Click here to see the entire link.
CSMS is planning an 8 day trip to the Dominican Republic in June 2018. They will travel across the Dominican Republic, a cultural journey into the local communities of the northern coast. Immersed in the local heritage, they will gain insight into the issues impacting children today. Working together with local non-profits and community members, students will build sustainable solutions to the educational, social and economic challenges they face.
Service Project Themes
-Access to Education
The trip is open to students from GHS, WKHS (9th grade) and CSMS (8th and 6th)
I recently visited an immersion class at WKHS because Sra. Domenech had invited a Spanish speaking assistant commander of a local police force to speak to her classes about the importance of bilingualism. The following conversation says it better than I can:
Immersion student A: "Does an applicant have an advantage for getting a job if they speak another language?"
Lieutenant: "Yes. When we receive applications, we separate them into qualified candidates and unqualified candidates. For those who are qualified, we begin to rank them, and for those who speak Spanish, we move them to the top of the list. In fact, for those who speak Spanish, and also read Spanish, that's great. But those who can speak, read and write, that's even better!"
I interrupted here, "Can you please repeat that and share it with every student in every school!?!"
Sometimes kids don't believe us because we're just their parents or just their teachers. But when an assistant commander of a local police force comes and speaks in Spanish to your students and tells them that they have an advantage...it makes a little bit more of an impact. Kudos to Sra. Domenech for emphasizing the usefulness of bilingualism in the workforce to all of her students.
LHS is planning an 11 day trip to Málaga, Spain during the summer of 2019. Contact Ms. Latham at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Did you know...?
Download the PDF version here.
Immersion Program Updates
Its our registration time of year! Please tell your friends and neighbors!
It's time for rising 5 year old kindergartners to register for immersion in Lexington One! Please be sure to visit our registration page for more information! Parent information sessions will be held at Lexington One Central Services, 100 Tarrar Springs Road, Lexington, SC 29072
CLICK HERE FOR THE PARENT BROCHURE!
CLICK HERE TO REACH MORE DETAILED INFORMATION ON DUAL LANGUAGE IMMERSION REGISTRATION!
There will be 5 parent information sessions you may choose from to attend. All information presented will be the same at each one.
FEBRUARY 23, 2018 AT 9:00 A.M. AND 1:00 P.M.
FEBRUARY 26, 2018 AT 2:00 P.M. AND 6:30 P.M.
MARCH 5, 2018 AT 10:00 A.M.
DUAL LANGUAGE IMMERSION REGISTRATION WILL OPEN ONLINE ONLY ON MARCH 7, 2018 AT 4:00 P.M.
Parents should go ahead and enroll their child for 5K at the school they are zoned for prior to registering for immersion. If your child is admitted into the program we will transfer your child's registration documents to the school he/she will attend in immersion.
As we are entering the second half of the year, its important for our immersion parents of middle schoolers to really encourage your child to do their very best in their immersion language arts and passport classes. As your child's teacher has shared with you, our middle schoolers are very capable communicators in the language and they are beginning to earn high school credits based on their performance in the language starting in 6th grade with level 1, 7th grade with level 2 and 8th grade with level 3. Their final ratings will convert to numerical grades at the end of the year. The conversion scale can be found here.
Many of our middle school immersion students are absolutely blowing us away with their language skills! It is amazing! These students are more than capable of performing quite well at these levels (as their language data shows coming out of 5th grade), unfortunately we are finding that some of our students are often not taking the classes very seriously and applying themselves because they believe it does not "count" for anything. Nothing could be further from the truth! This is a golden opportunity for them to learn and grow in the language and begin earning credits while in middle school. These classes DO count as part of their GPA at the end of the year and will be an important part of their middle school coursework as they prepare for high school. Please stress the importance of them applying themselves and paying attention in class so they can show what they really can do in the language and have a successful year! Our middle school teachers are willing and ready to assist them in order to ensure their success!
Recently we held a parent information session for secondary immersion parents. We wanted to update everyone on plans for our rising juniors and seniors next year. As of right now, we are offering them the opportunity to take AP courses in French or Spanish in order to earn come college credits while we continue our planning with other possible universities and/or colleges who may be willing to offer dual credit for these students. Students also have the option to be part of the International Baccalaureate program at Lexington High School if that is of interest to them. It is important to note that the IB courses carry the same weight as the AP courses and the experience is a much more holistic experience. Please do consider this as an option for your child next year! There will be more information to come about scheduling etc...
NOTE: We are also planning on how we will be recognizing the accomplishments of our immersion students, our first graduates of our program in the district! How exciting!
Immersion Program Highlights
At RBES, Fourth grade immersion teacher Sra. Amundaray, just wrapped up a unit in which students worked with food and supermarkets: converting measurement in the customary system, doing line graphs, pie charts and line plots and collecting data through surveys. They made presentations to their classmates about their findings and shared some of the recipes they worked with. Parents were completely involved. What a great way to incorporate math into the real world, while also expanding L2 vocabulary!
Another notable accomplishment comes from Katrinda Scott at MES.
Have you ever made a rubber band ball out of 100 rubber bands? Or possibly a fruit loop necklace with 100 fruit loops? PHES Spanish Immersion Kindergarten students celebrated the 100th day of school by presenting to parents in Spanish, projects they created in Srta. Hood's class. Their creative and fun projects were a great excuse to practice counting to 100 in Spanish!
MGES Chinese immersion students and teachers presented an incredible showcase for Chinese New Year. The entire school came together, art, music, P.E. administration, teachers and parents to celebrate Chinese New Year in style. Kindergarten performed a play, 1st graders danced in full costume, second grade sang, third grade sang, fourth grade did a Kung Fu style dance, and fifth grade did a dragon dance honoring the animals from the zodiac. Tai chi was performed, and one student played the violin. It was a beautiful celebration of language and culture.
MGMS Chinese immersion students took a trip in December to the Confucius Institute at USC. Click here to check out the post on our WL blog. They also provided a wonderful learning opportunity in their building for all WL students about the celebration of the Chinese New Year. Here is a brief video of students in action at the celebration.
At CSMS, eighth-grade Spanish immersion students recently tackled the Future Aspirations exploring different careers in which they can apply the World Language they have been learning for the last nine years. The students read 17 articles during these nine weeks about how to prepare to join the workforce. These items were read in the Target Language (Spanish) using the Program NewsELA; a website that rewrites news articles and other informational texts at five different reading levels to make it possible for students of all ages to read them.
The students also watched some videos about careers from Discovery Education. When they had gathered enough information about the topic they were interested in, they created a video (in Spanish) trying to convince a friend to join the career with them.
Year 1 immersion has extended our second unit of study, News, which focuses on accurately relating accounts in the past. Some of the activities to meet this goal have been: Research a local newspaper from one of the cities on their trip itinerary, and relate the news to classmates; watch a video of an unfortunate traveler, and write an account of what took place; tell a story of an unexpected event that took place during the trip to Spain. Students are showing much progress in terms of writing accuracy, and a beginning of integration of these concepts to verbal communication.
Year 2 immersion is diving head first into the topic of community challenges from various countries around the Spanish-speaking world. We educated ourselves on the sudden loss and slow re-building of the power grid situation in Puerto Rico. And we are now looking at the government collapse of Venezuela and its effects on daily life. However, we have moved away from simply reading about an issue to now building a sense of empathy for those in these types of crisis and imagining how our lives here in the U.S. would be interrupted by such events.
A group of French immersion students will have the unique opportunity to study abroad in Angers, France during the month of July for 3 weeks.
Click here to read tips from Jacquelyn, a multilingual high school senior who is passionate about learning languages. This bright young lady speaks Mandarin, English, French and Korean!
Did you know...?
As the time nears for parents to determine what language to choose for their child in immersion, perhaps some of the information shared in this article will help you make up your mind. Fortunately for us in Lexington, we are able to provide many different options for our parents and students! Click on the link in the title to read the full article.
Local View: Being bilingual can bring business-world success
By Melanie Haber on Feb 1, 2018 at 4:37 p.m.
"Being bilingual is becoming a critical skill more employers are seeking. Having the ability to speak another language gives one a competitive edge against those who are monolingual, especially at companies with only monolingual employees. A survey conducted by the American Graduate School of International Management in Glendale, Ariz., found that a majority of students said that knowing another language was a crucial factor in getting hired. In 2010, there were 240,000 jobs that targeted bilingual workers. By 2015, there were 630,000 jobs. With such numbers on the rise, it is logical for one to conclude the need to learn a second language so they can succeed in the business world."
It is hard to believe that the holidays are right around the corner! This fall has been so busy and our teachers and students have been working so hard and learning so much! Be sure to check out some of the great things we are doing in our classrooms!
We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and we wish everyone a very blessed and special holiday season!
Just a few updates before the break....
High School Dual Enrollment Update
In our last update we shared with you how we had re-entered planning for dual enrollment with the University of South Carolina so that we can offer this opportunity for our immersion students in Lexington One. The College of Arts and Humanities and the Modern Languages department at USC have worked very hard with us to get this effort off the ground. We learned last week that despite our joint efforts and the proposal being approved at many levels along the way as it worked its way through the system, once the proposal reached the very upper-leadership levels at the university, it was not approved. We are all severely disappointed (yet again) that we were not able to get this in place for next year.
In light of this latest news, we are working with our high schools to arrange for AP offerings for our students. We recognize that even though our students are capable of performing at higher levels, it would still allow them to earn some college credits immediately until we are able to offer more. We also have units of study we had proposed to USC that we can continue to work on and offer to our immersion students next year to supplement the AP curriculum and challenge our students.
Please rest assured that we are continuing to have conversations with other post-secondary institutions and planning for dual enrollment opportunities with our world language and dual language colleagues in SC and beyond. We will keep you posted and updated on our progress.
Immersion Program Highlights
RBES immersion teachers have been working hard this year to build school community around the immersion program and to raise awareness for Spanish language and the many different cultures that are represented in Spanish speaking countries. Recently, the second grade immersion L2 teacher, Mrs. Gutierrez, worked with her entire team and other school support staff to create a "Culture Corner" where all of the Spanish speaking countries are represented by their flags, along with a display of some items and pictures that are typical of some of the countries. They also found a video (in English) for each country and created and posted QR codes, so that any teacher in the school could bring their classes by to learn a little bit about where Spanish is spoken and the rich cultural heritage of their teachers and some of their fellow students and families. One of the most exciting things about our rich, diverse immersion programs, is the cultural enrichment for all of us who are involved. Being open to new cultures and diverse ways of thinking is one of the most useful life-skills we can teach ourselves and our children. Thank you for embracing this opportunity and for supporting our teachers and schools.
At GMS, sixth and seventh grade passport have begun research study on Guatemala. Students have been reading authentic Guatemalan newspapers and have reported back to the rest of the class as a formative activity; they will be ready to answer questions from classmates and/or teacher for their summative. Students have worked on specific sections every day. www.kiosko.net is the website students have used to find the Guatemalan newspaper. Students will continue learning about a few more topics on Guatemala, such as clothing traditions, chocolate, festive holidays and landmarks before concluding the unit.
At CSMS, seventh and eighth graders are finishing the presentations for the Guatemala Unit. They researched, wrote an essay, created a KeyNote/Google Slide Presentation, built a model/diorama or cooked a dish for the class. Below are two of the topics that students chose to study.
Our high school immersion teachers are getting creative with classroom space and set up. LHS got their benches for their outdoor classroom! Thanks to any of you who donated. They were able to get outside while the weather was still warm enough.
WKHS immersion students enjoyed an Around the Town activity in which Sra. Domenech organized the entire classroom into stations representing the different parts of town students have been studying. At each station they had to use authentic text to accomplish a task in the L2.
Did you know...?
Investing in Language Education for the
Post shared by: COFLT , March 2017
In 2014, a bipartisan group of members of Congress asked the American Academy of Arts and Sciences to undertake a new study of the nation’s language education needs. Four members of the United States Senate—Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin), Mark Kirk (R-Illinois), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii)—and four members of the House of Representatives—Rush Holt (D-New Jersey), Leonard Lance (R-New Jersey), David Price (D-North Carolina), and Don Young (R-Alaska)—signed two letters requesting that the Academy provide answers to the following questions:
1. How does language learning influence economic growth, cultural diplomacy, the productivity of future generations, and the fulfillment of all Americans?
2. What actions should the nation take to ensure excellence in all languages as well as international education and research, including how we may more effectively use current resources to advance language attainment?
In response to this request, the Academy created the Commission on Language Learning. The Commission’s final report (published this year), America’s Languages: Investing in Language Learning for the 21st Century, offers concrete recommendations to improve access to as many languages as possible, for people of every age, ethnicity, and socioeconomic background. You can click the link to learn more and to download the PDF version of this report.
Support for the Commission was provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Henry Luce Foundation, and resources from the Academy’s New Initiatives Fund.