The Middle School foreign language program introduces students to languages and cultures (past and present) other than their own. Students develop an awareness of the significance of cultural diversity through the exploration of different languages and customs. The ACTFL (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) World-Readiness Standards for Learning Languages are a cornerstone of our curriculum. Each language class focuses on ACTFL’s Five Cs: Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities. Exposure to, and concentration on, these themes primes students to use the skills they have developed and the knowledge they have acquired not only in their lives and future careers but also in their role as global citizens.
Fifth grade students begin the year with a study of ancient Roman culture, a topic which is also covered in interdisciplinary fashion in their history class. Other topics include Roman numerals and the concepts of adjective and noun agreement and gender and number. Additionally, students will spend time in the Collaborative Design Lab (CDL) exploring, and experimenting with, the arch and other Roman technological innovations. Students who choose to pursue Latin through 8th grade can potentially enter the Upper School with advanced standing.
Grades 5 & 6 - Introduction to Language
Grades 7 & 8 - Foreign Languages
At the end of the 6th grade, students choose to study French, Latin, or Spanish for the next two years. Successful completion of a two-year middle school foreign language course is equivalent to one year of upper school foreign language study and allows qualified students to enroll in the second- level course (French II, Latin II, or Spanish II) for 9th grade.