Spotlight on Spanish

 “In caring for our world, our community, and ourselves, we: reach out to others with kindness, speak and act with respect, strive for understanding of differences, share our time, our talents, and our energy.” The Spanish curriculum at Parker encapsulates

 these words, our school motto, and provides students another lens through which they can view the world.
“In caring for our world,” students in 4-5 Spanish used their experiences at Camp Chingachgook to inspire a unit of study about the natural world around the Parker campus. Students hunted for vocabulary on a hike and retraced their steps on a subsequent jaunt with color swatches to reinforce words and colors. They then created Parker nature guides with visual examples. Students are also beginning to look at comparing the natural world around the school to other parts of the world like the South American Andes.
K-1 students have been learning to “reach out to others with kindness” and to “speak and act with respect” through songs and greetings.
While all classes “strive for understanding of differences” through the great language bridge, 2-3 students observed the family traditions of artist Carmen Lomas Garza. They then considered their own family activities using the verb, “gustar” (to like/be pleasing to), before diving into a family unit. Middle school students likewise “strive for understanding of differences”. Greetings, meals and mealtimes, and house and home are all part of our current class discussions.
Parker students will ultimately learn to share time, talent, and energy both at home and abroad through their language study at Parker. Students in Grades 7 and 8, will have the opportunity to exchange ideas before leaving Parker for high school as part of an exchange with St. Peter’s School in Barcelona, Spain. Regardless of the age or grade level, students are learning how language study can challenge stereotypes and preconceived notions about others, build bridges between cultures, create comparisons with their own realities, and learn that we are all friends:  “Somos amigos.”