Dual Language Immersion Program
St. Philomene School is pleased to offer Dual Language Immersion for the 2019-20 school year for Transitional Kindergarten, Kindergarten and first grade in both English and Spanish. Students learn Spanish during the "English" portion of English Language Arts and during religion daily.
An additional grade will be added yearly, ie, 2020-2021 second grade will be Dual Language Immersion and so on.
In Dual Language Immersion, students spend half the day learning in English and half the day learning in Spanish. By being taught not just language fundamentals but academic subjects, gain both languages while not losing a step in their studies. In addition, by speaking English and Spanish at an early age, our students are more likely to remember both languages forever. Dual Language Immersion addresses the needs of the 21st century world. You will see the benefits of Dual Language Immersion for native English and Spanish speakers alike. We are the only Catholic Elementary Schools to offer Dual Language Immersion as well as one of the few to do so in California. This program will add to our educational plan, which offers our students a rich core academic curriculum.
Would you like your child to:
- Be a bilingual speaker?
- Learn our curriculum while developing bilingual skills?
- Read and write in both English and Spanish?
- Develop greater understanding of both cultures?
Benefits of Dual Language Immersion
- Language proficiency in both English and Spanish
- Improved communication ability
- Enhanced listening skills
- Exceed performance standards of solo language learners
- Increased problem solving skills
- Greater cultural appreciation
- More prepared for global culture and market
Dual Language Immersion Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. Do Dual Language Immersion students meet academic standards?
Immersion students attain the same level of competence not only in language skill but in standard subjects as well. Furthermore, Immersion students develop the critical thinking needed to exceed standards much earlier than their peers.
2. Does Dual Language Immersion work for a wide range of learners?
Immersion programs serve students of all backgrounds and levels of academic ability. Academic challenges do not preclude students from success in immersion and they achieve higher levels of proficiency in their second language.
3. How does Dual Language Immersion differ from standard language learning programs?
The key aspect of Dual Immersion is that students do not just learn a language but learn to think in that language. The learning takes place in a different cultural environment, so everyday learning takes place as if the student was in another country. Thus, the student’s language becomes not just functional but second nature.
4. How does Dual Language Immersion affect cultural appreciation?
Immersion students do not lose any appreciation for their first language culture. Immersion programs are associated with a higher level of understanding and tolerance with the second language.
5. How long until my child is fluent in a second language?
Every child learns differently whether they are learning in English or Spanish. The amount of time it takes for a student to be fully fluent will depend on the student’s learning patterns, behavior and environment. Our teacher will work with every student to insure that they are learning at their unique optimum level.
6. Will my child speak exactly like native speakers of the second language?
Although the second language will be spoken extensively in school, it is necessary for Immersion student’s to interact with native speakers outside of the classroom if they want to achieve native-like competence including fixing grammatical errors, increased vocabulary and idioms.
Dual Language Immersion Research
- Two new studies demonstrate that multilingual exposure improves not only children’s cognitive skills but also their social abilities.
- Dual language learning has been found to be the only method of second language acquisition to facilitate the full closure of the achievement gap between English learners and English speakers in primary and secondary education.
- Students in schools following this model are achieving high levels of academic proficiency in reading and mathematics
- Students who participate in these programs gain grade level academic ability, well-developed language and literacy skills in two languages, and cross-cultural competence.
- People who regularly use two languages tend to perform better on executive function tasks and maintain better cognitive functioning with age.
- Multilingualism has been shown to have many social, psychological and lifestyle advantages. Moreover, researchers are finding a swathe of health benefits from speaking more than one language, including faster stroke recovery and delayed onset of dementia.