“Knowledge of languages is the doorway to wisdom.”
FOREIGN LANGUAGE PHILOSOPHY
At Saint Luke School, we are one of the few PK-8 schools that teach both French and Spanish. We believe that language and communication are at the heart of the human experience. The United States must educate students who are linguistically and culturally equipped to communicate successfully in a pluralistic American society and abroad. This imperative envisions a future in which ALL students will develop and maintain proficiency in English and at least one other language, modern or classical. Children who come to school from non-English backgrounds should also have opportunities to develop further proficiency in their first language (Philosophy/Standards for Foreign Language Learning, extracted from ACTFL website on March 2015).
All students at Saint Luke School study both French and Spanish from kindergarten through second grade. Upon matriculation to third grade, students select a desired language to study. The curriculum begins with vocabulary development and culture. This foundation is then augmented with grammar, writing, conversation, and literature. Following graduation, students are placed in high school level II, II Honors, or III based on the National Exam scores and classroom performance.
7th and 8th grade students who qualify are inducted into the National French/Spanish Junior Honor Society. This promotes language proficiency, continuity of studies, cultural understanding, and friendship.
- Kindergarten: 45 minutes per week
- Grades 1 and 2: 60 minutes per week
- Grade 3 to 5: 135 minutes per week
- Grades 6 and 7: 180 minutes per week
- Grade 8: 225 minutes per week
The French curriculum fully embraces St Luke Catholic School’s mission “to prepare students to become academically sound citizens instilled with a sense of Catholic values and knowledge of Catholic faith, committed to the pursuit of learning and dedicated to serving mankind.”
In 3rd Grade, students decide which language they wish to study. At this stage, even though we keep including and using the arts to master & practice the content, each grade will have its own textbook to support the learning process. Besides, all students are given at the beginning of the year a “Journal” to encourage creative writing in French. The class has also conversation “spaces” for students to foster on their communication skills through “daily” conversations. All our classes start with a prayer to give us the time to pause and reflect on our core Catholic values.
As part of the Spanish curriculum, we participate with the Sociedad Hispánica de la Amistad, which was established by the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese in the year of 2000. The purpose of the Sociedad was to promote cross-cultural acceptance and understanding in students of Spanish and Portuguese and to encourage service to school and community. The motto of the society is “Todos a Una,” All for one. The name of the chapter at Saint Luke School is Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, an extraordinary Mexican writer, poet, and intellectual. Our colors are red and gold.