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World Languages

Spanish

Spanish I

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: none

In this course, students learn basic conversational skills such as greeting people, introducing themselves and others, talking about the weather, describing personality traits, talking about friends and family, school, daily activities, and giving opinions. They learn to tell time, count, ask questions, and discuss their likes and dislikes. Spanish I uses the Teaching with Comprehensible Input approach which emphasizes listening and reading comprehension at the first-year level. Students learn to speak and write at a basic level in the present tense using high-frequency vocabulary, structures and expressions. Students read a first-year graded novel. Cultural topics are presented throughout the year in mini-lessons including the Running of the Bulls, the Castells tradition of Catalunya, and the Spanish Civil War.

Spanish II

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Spanish I

The course of study for the second-year student of Spanish will focus on activities geared toward increasing proficiency in speaking Spanish and deepening understanding of Hispanic cultures. Level two builds language skills through the methodology of Teaching with Comprehensible Input, using high-frequency vocabulary, structures and expressions. Listening, reading and basic conversation skills are emphasized at this level. The class used carefully scaffolded story-telling techniques such as ‘movietalk’ and ‘storyask’ to build comprehension and fluency. Students will read two second-year graded novels, one each semester. The two Spanish past tenses are explored in the second semester. Cultural topics include examining the indigenous civilizations of the Caribbean and Mexico, as well as current events in Latin America.

Spanish III

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Spanish II

In the third year of study, students shift from discussing personal interests and activities to giving opinions on more complex cultural topics that stem from current events, songs, and stories from the Spanish-speaking world. Through the continued use of Comprehensible Input methodology, students focus on the development of abstract thought in Spanish as well as stylistic functions of language such as transition words and metaphor. Students will read one third-year graded novel and begin to increase the amount of speaking and writing produced in the language.

Spanish IV

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Spanish III

This course offers a review and deepened understanding of cultural and grammatical concepts studied in levels I-III and introduces the forthcoming AP-V curriculum. Students engage in activities designed to help them reach greater proficiency in speaking, writing, listening, and reading. They study vocabulary and structures that enable them to communicate in a wide variety of thematic areas. Presentational and interpersonal speaking modes are practiced through such activities. The course is conducted entirely in Spanish.

AP Spanish V Language

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Spanish IV and department approval (Detailed info)

This course emphasizes strategies for advanced oral  and written communication in Spanish. The class is taught entirely in Spanish, and students are expected to use only Spanish, both while communicating with the teacher and classmates. Students will also gain experience and be evaluated on development of their listening, reading and writing skills. According to the guidelines for the AP Examination in Spanish Language and Culture, the course will address six themes: global challenges, science and technology, contemporary life, personal and public identities, family and community, and beauty and aesthetics. Whereas the overall course goal is to attain higher levels of language proficiency, critical thinking skills and cultural awareness on a global scale, the preeminent purpose is to foster a desire to apply that language proficiency and cultural knowledge in meaningful ways in the future.

Spanish VI: Seminar

Grade 12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Spanish V, or Spanish IV with department approval

This course is for students who desire to build their language skills at a more advanced level by using authentic cultural resources that include films and such supplemental material as traditional literature, television shows, and popular culture. There will be an emphasis on Spanish and Latin American history and contemporary issues in the Spanish-speaking world. Writing and conversation will be emphasized. Students will also engage in conversational activities that require critical thinking, creativity, and presentation skills. The class will be conducted entirely in Spanish.

French

French I

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: none

In this course, students learn basic conversational skills such as greeting people, introducing themselves and others, talking about schedules and daily activities, and giving opinions. They learn to ask questions and discuss their likes, dislikes, and personal activities in French. The French I course uses the Teaching with Comprehensible Input (TCI) approach, which emphasizes listening and reading comprehension at the first-year level. Students learn to speak and write at a basic level in the present tense using high-frequency vocabulary, structures and expressions. Students will read a first-year graded novel in the second semester. Cultural topics are presented throughout the year in mini-lessons including the Tour de France as well as sports in the Francophone world, Francophone inventions, holidays, and cuisine.

French II

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: French I

The course of study for the second-year student of French will focus on activities geared toward increasing proficiency in speaking French, improving reading and writing skills, and deepening understanding of Francophone cultures. Level two builds language skills through the methodology of Teaching with Comprehensible Input (TCI), using high-frequency vocabulary, structures and expressions. The class uses carefully scaffolded story-telling techniques such as 'Movietalk' and 'Storyasking' to build comprehension and fluency. Students will read two second-year graded novels, one each semester. In the second semester, students focus on retelling stories in the past tense. Cultural topics include exploring the culture and geography of Cameroon, holidays, traditional legends, fairy tales, and current events from the Francophone world.

French III

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: French II

In the third year of study, students shift from discussing personal interests and activities to giving opinions on more complex cultural topics that stem from current events, songs, and stories from the Francophone world. Through the continued use of Comprehensible Input methodology, students focus on development of abstract thought in French as well as stylistic functions of language such as transition words and metaphor. Students will read one third-year graded novel and begin to increase the amount of speaking and writing produced in the language.

French IV

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: French III

This is a pre-AP course that is taught in French. Students will enhance their competence in the spoken and written language as they explore universal elements in storytelling. This unit culminates in students creating their own short story in French. Students will then read a French novel and use its themes as a springboard for discussion and shared reflections. By the end of French IV, students develop a more abstract level of language and learn to work with more extended discourse. This course draws from authentic texts, videos, and real-world sources to bring the Francophone culture to life in the classroom.

AP French V Language

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: French IV and department approval (Detailed info)

This course emphasizes strategies for advanced oral and written communication in French. The class is taught in French and students are expected to use French while communicating with the teacher in and out of the classroom. Students will also gain experience and be evaluated on development of their listening, reading and writing skills. According to the guidelines for the AP Examination in French Language and Culture, the course will address six themes: global challenges, science and technology, contemporary life, personal and public identities, family and community, and beauty and aesthetics. Whereas the overall course goal is to attain higher levels of language proficiency, critical thinking skills and cultural awareness on a global scale, the preeminent purpose is to foster a desire to apply that language proficiency and cultural knowledge in meaningful ways in the future.

French VI: Seminar

Grade 12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: French V, or French IV with department approval (Detailed info)

This course is for students who desire to build their language skills at a more advanced level by using authentic cultural texts that include films and such supplemental material as traditional literature, television shows, and popular culture. There will be an emphasis on Francophone history, contemporary issues in the Francophone world, and pedagogical approaches to second language acquisition. Writing and conversation will be emphasized. They will also engage in conversational activities that require critical thinking, creativity, and presentation skills. The class will be conducted entirely in French.

Chinese

Chinese I

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: none

This course is designed to lay a groundwork for those who are interested in communicating with Chinese people and understanding Chinese culture. Its objective is to develop students’ overall competence in speaking, listening, reading and writing Chinese, with special emphasis on oral-aural skills. It also will provide students with opportunities to apply the language in appropriate social/cultural contexts. A learner-centered, task-based and proficiency-driven approach will be utilized. Students will have the opportunity to talk about their lives, perform skits, give short speeches and presentations, recite Chinese tongue twisters and sing Chinese songs. Authentic materials also will be used to promote learning effectiveness and cultural understanding.

Chinese II

Grades 10-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Chinese I

Chinese II is designed to further students’ learning of the Chinese language and culture. Students will engage in a variety of activities to enhance their communicative skills and their proficiency in speaking, listening, reading and writing, and increase their knowledge and appreciation of Chinese culture. Activities include performing skits, role playing, giving speeches, making presentations, reciting Chinese poems, and singing Chinese songs. A learner-centered, task-based and proficiency-driven approach will be employed. Furthermore, the use of authentic materials will foster learning effectiveness and cultural awareness.

Chinese III

Grades 11-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Chinese II

In Chinese III, the students continue to advance their oral and aural skills and put more emphasis on their reading and writing skills. They also will be exposed to more complex grammatical structures and sentence patterns. Formal written vocabulary and idioms will be introduced. Activities include skits, speeches, presentations, and writing compositions. Authentic materials will enhance a more subtle understanding of the culture.

Chinese IV

Grades 11-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Chinese III

Chinese IV expands on vocabulary, grammatical structures and sentence patterns to advance students’ reading and writing proficiency. Visual materials, realia and authentic materials are utilized to promote students’ communication skills and cultural understanding. Students participate in various activities, including role-plays, skits, individual oral presentations and writing compositions. Lessons and activities are designed for the students to communicate effectively in Chinese, gain knowledge and understanding of the Chinese culture, connect with other disciplines and acquire new information, develop insight into the nature of language and culture, and participate in multilingual communities in the USA and around the world.

Latin

Latin I

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: none

In Latin I, students will develop basic reading comprehension through a focus on high-frequency vocabulary and grammatical structures; specifically, we will focus on the sixteen most important verbs in the Latin language and use them in all of their grammatical contexts while learning about each other in comparison with the ancient Romans. To accomplish this end, this course utilizes various activities informed by the best practices of second language acquisition. We will use book one of the Cambridge Latin Course as our guide through this process.

Latin II

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Latin I

Latin II continues the methodology and goals of Latin I as we dive deeper into all facets of ancient Roman culture and history. Book two of the Cambridge Latin Course will guide our topical investigations.

Latin III

Grades 11-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Latin II

Latin III continues the methodology and goals of Latin I and II while preparing students to read and analyze extant works of Latin literature. We will continue to use the Cambridge Latin Course as well as appropriately adapted works of ancient authors. Additionally, an emphasis on understanding Latin syntax will be deployed in order to prepare students for the expectations of the A.P. Latin exam as well as the traditional demands of a university-level Latin course.

AP Latin IV

Grades 9-12
Elective
Full Year
Prerequisites: Latin III

AP Latin is designed to provide advanced high school students with a rich and rigorous Latin course, approximately equivalent to an upper-intermediate (typically fifth semester) college or university Latin course. Students who successfully complete the course are able to read, understand, translate, and analyze Latin prose and poetry. Using Caesar’s De Bello Gallico and Vergil’s Aeneid as a base, students prepare and translate the required Latin readings with an accuracy that reflects precise understanding of the Latin in all its details; they also read and comprehend passages at sight, even if not with full understanding of every detail. With explicit attention to developing skills for reading, translating, and analyzing Latin texts, the AP Latin course helps students reach beyond translation to read with critical, historical, and literary sensitivity. English readings from the two texts are also included in the required syllabus in order to put the Latin excerpts in a significant context.

Ancient Greek

Ancient Greek

Grades 11-12
Elective
Full Year, 1/2 credit
Prerequisites: None

Ancient Greek is an exploratory course designed to provide students with a basic foundation in the grammar and structure of the Attic Greek dialect as well as familiarize them with the daily lives of the Greek people. The major objective of this course is to develop an appreciation for the language and culture of Ancient Greece. In order to do that, this course will emphasize the development of an elementary understanding of the vocabulary, forms, functions, and syntax of the language. In addition, students will learn about Greek history, geography, mythology, and culture through the study of adapted Greek texts.

This full-year, 1/2-credit course will meet approximately twice per week plus every other Wednesday.

The Upper School world languages curriculum creates an appreciation for cultural diversity in today's global society and enhances listening and speaking skills.

High school students are required to take at least two years of a world language, although most students take at least three years. Students with a strong interest and understanding of a language may take Advanced Placement courses to earn college credit.

A fully equipped, state-of-the-art digital audio/video language lab provides students the opportunity to master conversation, pronunciation and comprehension skills.

Many students take advantage of a variety of international travel opportunities available to high school students, such as the IU Honors Program, where students can practice the language and experience the culture firsthand.