The World Languages Department prepares middle school students for the modern world using acquisition of Spanish as a bridge to communities and other cultures around the world. By drawing on the intrinsic enthusiasm and joyful sense of competency that increasing proficiency in a world language can bring, our Spanish learners speak, write and demonstrate what they know with tremendous pleasure. Acquiring functional language skills is essential to linking proficiency to real world application. We foster a vivid and exciting apprenticeship for our Spanish learners as they deepen their insights into the cultural perspectives of other societies, particularly those of Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean and Spain.
We use the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines, Performance Descriptors, and research-based high-leverage teaching practices to inform curricular approaches to language acquisition. The Progress Indicators for Language Learners are based on Can-Do Statements, which are arranged by mode of communication (interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational) and also serve as self-assessment checklists that students can use to track their progress and monitor what they are able to do with the target language.
Spanish classes meet six days of the 7-day cycle.
Additional information: if a new student is entering Berkeley Carroll as a 6th, 7th, or 8th grader and has not studied Spanish previously, we do our best to create separate beginner level classes by grade level and offer an intensive Spanish class, rather than having them join the grade-level class as a total beginner. This smaller class setting is designed to provide them the opportunity to acquire a solid understanding of the basics, with the expectation that the following school year they may be able to join the grade-level class. For students entering Berkeley Carroll as 8th graders, consideration is given to providing them with the means to continue their previous language study (for languages other than Spanish) via online instruction; this is done on a case-by-case basis.