LISD Advanced Spanish Program Students Connect
District builds community among its Spanish language learners.
May 22, 2019 — Lewisville ISD (LISD) offers students who have successfully participated in an uninterrupted sequence of language learning in elementary Dual Language, Spanish Immersion, or are native/heritage Spanish speakers, the opportunity to continue their Spanish language development from elementary school into middle school through the district’s Advanced Spanish Language Program (ASLP).
The program, which will be offered at 11 middle schools across the district next school year, focuses on extending students’ proficiency in all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Successful completion of these courses fulfills the Languages Other Than English (LOTE) high school graduation requirement.
“Through this program, LISD students have an incredible opportunity to experience a 10-plus year trajectory of Spanish learning,” LISD World Languages Administrator Annie Rivera said. “In the future, students will continue to grow in their proficiency skills and not only acquire Spanish, but also increase global perspective and cultural competency, which are critical in the 21st century.”
This school year, ASLP teachers and district instructional learning facilitators—wanting to further enhance the already-unique program—diligently collaborated to connect Spanish language learners from across the district.
The experience? For an entire school day, 141 ASLP students from DeLay, Forestwood, Hedrick, Huffines and Griffin middle schools, videoconferenced with one another to share in Spanish, their research and findings about how people and cultures around the world connect in present day. The idea stemmed from the district’s curriculum specifically designed for students to have an authentic learning opportunity.
Teachers knew it would bring more meaning to their research by having students present their learning to other students from across the district.
“Students who participate in this program come from a variety of backgrounds,” Forestwood Middle School Pre-Advanced Placement Spanish teacher Angie Fontana said. “So, we wanted to create a community of Spanish language learners from across the district to help boost confidence in language expression.”
To help further their learning, students created blogs about their experience, which they are now encouraged to continue to keep the district’s Spanish language learning community in motion.
“This was a very special experience,” sixth-grader Melanie Catto said. “I think it was very beneficial talking to other students because we got to learn about other cultures and practice our Spanish.”
Fellow sixth-grader Emerson Ash added, “It was so fun to see how people live in different places. I thought it was so interesting that we got to present to teachers and students. If I get the chance, I would love to do this again.”
Next school year, the teachers have made it a goal to continue collaborating with one another and expand the experience to the global community.
See more photos from the day by following #LISDWL on Twitter.
About LISD’s Advanced Spanish Language Program
LISD’s Advanced Spanish Language Program, currently offered at 10 middle schools across the district, focuses on extending students’ proficiency in all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Successful completion of these courses fulfills the Languages Other Than English (LOTE) high school graduation requirement.
While the goal of the program is to provide an opportunity to continue Spanish learning, the course also provides a solid foundation for students who choose to take the Advanced Placement (AP) exam in eighth grade. Upon successful completion of the AP exam, students will have the opportunity to earn college credit and can begin learning a third language or continue to take an additional level of AP Spanish in high school.