East Texas elementary schools begin language lessons young
POSTED: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - 6:58pm
UPDATED: Thursday, January 23, 2014 - 12:00pm
Tyler, TX (KETK) — East Texas schools Brook Hill and Cumberland Elementary are getting their students hooked on Spanish before they even reach the first grade. Starting in Pre-K, students begin learning various Spanish words through song.
KETK spoke with Brook Hill's Spanish teacher Susan Partida, who said, "They're just an open book. They're ready to learn language very young. So it's like we're filling those pages". The same teacher stays with students their entire elementary school career. The concept is rooted in learning the language conversationally. Partida said, "We teach them colors, animals, things like that. As they grow older then we can add more language into it, and make it more conversational because they can build on the previous year".
Repetition and consistency encourage students to get excited about Spanish, and use it outside of the classroom. Brook Hill Elementary is able to create special moments through translating bible verses and songs into Spanish lyrics the students can remember. Partida said, "It makes it very meaningful when it's something in their everyday life that we can apply in Spanish, and they can make those connections". This also better prepares students for language courses later on. Partida believes, "They have a very great foundation to be fluent so when they go to the upper campus and they're presented with all the grammar the more difficult parts of learning a language, they're ready for it".