Foreign languages are taught in accordance with the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language (ACTFL) standards. Similar to the New Jersey Student Learning Standards, the ACTFL standards state what the students should be able to do in the target language at any given level. The ACTFL standards start at the Novice level and continue through Intermediate, Advanced and Superior as the speaker gains proficiency. Each level is also separated into low, middle and high.
Since this is the students' first exposure to the Spanish language, 4th and 5th graders will enter at the Novice Low level. Our goal is to help students reach the Novice Mid level. Below are examples of what students will be able to do at each level.
Novice Low: Students will be able to recognize and present basic information using single words and memorized phrases. Students will communicate on very familiar topics using phrases that they have practiced and memorized.
Novice Mid: Students will be able to recognize and present information using a variety of words, phrases and memorized expressions and will be able to communicate on familiar topics.
Please keep in mind that your children are not expected to understand every word of Spanish they hear, nor are they expected to speak at a level of proficiency higher than Novice Low to Novice Mid. This class is designed to introduce and expose the students to Spanish in a natural way that prepares them to take a foreign language at Hammarskjold.
At the end of each unit, your child will complete and bring home a checklist of "Can-Do" statements. This serves as a self-assessment for each student to determine where on the ACTFL proficiency scale he or she falls. Please feel free to ask your child(ren) what they are learning in Spanish class!