Offering Children the Gift of a Second Language
The Red Clay Consolidated School District offers an exciting opportunity for elementary students attending Linden Hill Elementary School and Marbrook Elementary School to engage in learning in a non-traditional way – by immersing them in two languages and cultures beginning in kindergarten. Students in these “strand” programs will become proficient in both languages while learning the same content as their peers outside the program. Linden Hill offers incoming kindergarten students the opportunity to apply to be in a Chinese Immersion program, while kindergarten students at Marbrook can apply to be in a Spanish Immersion program. These programs will serve as one pathway in these schools; different from William C. Lewis Dual Language Elementary School, where all students are learning 2 languages.
What Is Immersion?
It is the fastest-growing and most effective type of world language instruction currently available in U.S. schools. Immersion offers children an opportunity to learn a second language the same way we learn English – by living it. No other type of instruction, short of living in a non-English speaking environment, is as successful.
How does it work?
In an Immersion Classroom, students benefit from two highly-qualified educators – one for each language. An English-speaking teacher will provide instruction in reading, writing and social studies for half the day. Then students will transition to a Chinese or Spanish-speaking teacher who will deliver lessons (math, science and language) in the second language.
The Immersion Teacher will speak entirely in Spanish or Chinese and communicates using a range of strategies including: pictures, songs, games, body language, expressions, drama, etc. Young learners are adept at acquiring language in meaningful contexts. Students will learn to speak only in their new language during that portion of the day.
Immersion classes follow the same curriculum, in all content areas that non-immersion students would follow in any Red Clay Consolidated School District elementary classroom. They use many of the same materials as their non-immersion peers.