World Language/ESL/Bilingual Education
Mrs. Ruth Chang, Supervisor
Samantha D'Agosta, Secretary
The ability to communicate in more than one language expands students’ views as well as educates them to participate in the global community. Developing a strong language proficiency in a world language enhances students’ 21st century skill set so students are more marketable in the areas of trade, business, marketing, national security, military, law, philosophy, STEM, public health, art, film, music, dance, fashion, cuisine. In addition, students gain the personal satisfaction of their ability to understand the perspectives of other people and to communicate with them.
All fourth and fifth grade East Brunswick students study Spanish. When students go to Hammarskjold, they have the option to continue Spanish or begin the study of French, German or Italian. Our full language program continues through the 12th grade. At the high school level, courses include academic level courses in all languages, Spanish Medical Professions Honors, French and Spanish Business Honors, and AP courses for those who meet the requirements. East Brunswick has also just begun to build its Mandarin option for world language.
World Language Proficiency Levels
When studying world language and culture, our goal is to reach the highest proficiency language level possible in a 6-12 environment. The world language program focuses on what the students CAN DO with language. From day one, the students are immersed in listening to and speaking the world language. The classes are rich in activities that promote student acquisition of this language and culture. As the students advance in their studies, they have opportunities to develop global perspectives in business and culture and medical professions. After seven years of study, students are equal to those who can be employed by the Foreign Service. Our students do reach a high level of proficiency in reading, writing, speaking and listening.
New Jersey Seal of Biliteracy
The Seal of Biliteracy certifies that students are bilingual in English and a second language. Students who are proficient in English and meet Intermediate-Mid proficiency in a world language will receive the NJ Seal of Biliteracy certificate and will have this noted on their high school transcript. This distinction is viewed as an asset when applying for a job or for college admission. Open this brochure for more details: New Jersey Seal of Biliteracy Brochure 2018-2019
World Languages Facilitate Connections
In world language classrooms interdisciplinary connections promote critical thinking, problem solving and knowledge retention. Study of a world language makes it possible so that these skills and knowledge base become the foundation for global interactions. Here are examples of how world language study reinforces other content areas:
- Language Arts/English
- Develop an ability to communicate effectively for a variety of purposes and audiences
- Integrate reading, writing, speaking, listening and thinking
- Social studies
- Become interested, informed and active participants in the world both locally and globally
- Develop skills in problem-solving, gathering and interpreting data
- Investigate the natural world in the world cultures studied
- Health education
- Develop awareness of the mental, social, physical and emotional aspects of a healthy individual
- Draw conclusions about cultural comparisons of these aspects
- Technology and computer education
- Engage in hands-on, problem-solving activities related to real-world issues through the use of numerous applications
- Conduct online research to gain insight into products, practices, and perspectives of world cultures
- Use technology to collaborate and problem-solve with native speakers
- Explore the perspective and products of the arts in other cultures
- Express oneself creatively
The English-as-a-Second Language (ESL) and Bilingual Education programs serve students who speak languages other than English. The programs are designed to help the students become sufficiently proficient in English to participate in English-language activities. Over 200 students from 16 different language backgrounds are enrolled in our ESL program. The English language learners remain in the program until they are proficient in English. While in ESL, they also attend regular classes in English. Students enter the ESL and bilingual education program after it has been determined through testing that their English proficiency is limited. State guidelines are followed to determine their proficiency level.
Our English language learners are also immersed in the acquisition of English. Teachers work with each student to build his/her language proficiency and also support his/her understanding of the content areas.
Students of German Building Bridges of Communication and Understanding
Our high school students of German in Dr. Wehner-Frano's classes welcomed German and French students to remember, discuss and learn the significance of the Berlin Airlift in 1948-49. This airlift was the largest campaign to transport food and goods into an area of Berlin that was blockaded by the Soviet Union. This was part of the Marshall Plan and has since laid the foundation for an enduring friendship between Germans and Americans.
Our world language programs teach our students to be able to communicate in world languages so that they can build bridges of communication and understanding.
Thanks to Goethe Institute, the Airbridge Project Berlin and the German world language program here in East Brunswick High School, this student-to-student connection brought together today's teens to explore perspectives while speaking in German. This visit began with music, dance and conversations so the students were able to get to know each other. Workshops followed in which the students explored the continued meaning and significance of actions like this Airlift.
Our international guests were very impressed with the welcome that they received from our Superintendent, Board members, Assistant-Superintendents, directors, supervisors, and high school administrators.
The students in Signora Spagnuolo’s Italian 5 Honors classes at EBHS had a great time learning about how to make authentic Italian pizza from the master “pizzaiolo” Lorenzo during their trip to the pizzeria Café Picasso in Somerville. The students, who have been learning all about the art, history and tradition of pizza making in Italy, got to make and enjoy their own personal pizzas as well as practice their Italian speaking skills with Lorenzo, a native of Calabria. Bravissimi ragazzi!!
Holidays Celebrations in Germany
Barefoot? Sleeping in class?? What could possibly be going on? Students in Frau Wilder's German classes at both Churchill and EBHS celebrated Nikolaus, a holiday on December 6th when he fills the shoes of "good children." Students also learned about Krampus, a different cultural figure, who comes on December 5th. Krampus is there to punish “bad kids” and he leaves quite an impression!
Celebrating the New Year in Spanish/Latin style!
Students in Señora Cortes-Fabrizio's Spanish 5 class, students ate 12 grapes as the clock struck 12, made a toast, threw pennies at the wall for good fortune, swept away bad vibes, walked around the building with a suitcase to bring about travel plans and stood up on a chair to bring success in the new year! íFeliz año nuevo!
Playing Our Own Games, auf Deutsch!
Students of Herr Lavery at Hammarskjold created their own games, wrote the instructions in German and taught visitors how to play. All the while these students spoke in German. Sehr gut, German 2!
French Honor Society Teaches French to 5th Graders
Monsieur Mondésir's students of the French Honor Society organized a French Night at Central School on Friday, December 14th. The high school students welcomed fifth graders and their families to learn a bit of French language and culture. Photo booth, face-painting, treasure hunt, coloring, and home made crêpes for all! The French Honor Society will be back at our World Language Expo on January 10th at Hammarskjold. See you there at 6:30 PM! Come learn about the world language options for sixth grade!
Getting Ready for Careers and Becoming Bilingual!
Students in Spanish 5H with Señora Verano hosted a job fair called La Feria Laboral. Each student researched a career of personal interest, created a brochure, poster or Google presentation. At their job fair, they are teaching their peers about options beyond college. The magic is...all is done in Spanish. The students will be prepared to enter the job market fully bilingual!
Exploring World Cultures
Colombians are passionate about good food and a great ambiance. Señora Baez-Cardona and her high school students discovered and are developing an appreciation for traditional Colombian cuisine and dance. Her students delighted in authentic cultural dishes and they learned how to dance the Bachata and Merengue! ¡Qué divertido!
World Language Expo, 2019
Fifth grade students are planning for their educational journey at Hammarskjold! The East Brunswick World Language Department welcomed these students and their parents and families on Thursday, January 10th and presented the world language options. Each student has the opportunity to select one of the five world languages we offer. Students can continue learning Spanish or opt for one of the following: French, German, Italian or Mandarin.
We are thankful to the EBEA PRIDE committee for awarding the grant written by Mr. Lavery because this helped to fund the event. We are also grateful to the world language teachers, the high school world language Honor Societies and Mrs. Ruth Chang, our world language supervisor.