In learning a world language, it is vital to find authentic and useful ways to actually speak the language outside of classroom! Parents can extend their children’s experience outside of school in a number of ways:
- Local restaurants. The DC region is replete with any number of cafes or restaurants where students can experience a variety of food. Consider asking your child to use her Spanish to read you the menu, and, if possible, ordering appropriately.
- Grocery stores. Explore the grocery store’s international section and seek out obscure fruits and vegetables that are indigenous to Spanish-speaking countries. Help your child find recipes online, and test out new foods.
- Watch that movie in Spanish. When watching at home, choose a language setting to suit the learner!
- Dance. Dance is a great way to become involved with a new language. Salsa and many other dances from Latin America and Spain are taught as part of our curriculum at GDS. In the 8th grade, the end of the year Spanish field trip takes our students to a dance studio where they learn salsa, Latin hip-hop, and cumbia from teachers who are Spanish speakers.
Take a look at the dancers from last year’s 8th grade dance field trip and you will see the joy of learning to express what you feel in a second language. You can almost hear the music as you watch their expertise. ¡Bailamos!