World Language Department
Be curious and connect. The World Language Program’s ultimate goal is for each girl to connect intimately and passionately to the cultures and language that she studies, both in and out of the classroom.
In our multicultural world, Stuart’s World Language program prepares and inspires young women to be active, informed, and responsible citizen leaders in the 21st century global community.
Real life experiences through travel and interaction with our sister schools around the world bring a depth of cultural knowledge and language practice. Being part of an international network, we offer and encourage real life experiences through multiple opportunities to travel to other Sacred Heart schools, and to host students from all over the world in our classrooms.
Three consecutive years of the same language fulfills the world language requirement for graduation.
- World Language in the Lower School
- MIDDLE SCHOOL FRENCH
- MIDDLE SCHOOL SPANISH
- MIDDLE SCHOOL LATIN
- Upper School French
- Upper School Latin
- Upper School Spanish
The Lower School Spanish curriculum takes students on a cultural adventure! We will be exploring language and culture through the explicit presentation and integration of the five C’s: Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons and Communities. Each grade level introduces students to two characters from the United States who travel through Spanish speaking countries. Culture is the backdrop of the curriculum. Cultural activities are presented with the goal of integrating students and identifying common features in different cultural traditions. This helps students derive extended value from the activities as they learn about language, culture and tradition by role-playing situations similar to those encountered by the characters. The overall goal of the Lower School curriculum is communicative competence in Spanish by means of cultural awareness activities that focus on the gradual development of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills at each level. The specific objectives of the curriculum are to introduce students to Hispanic and Hispanic American culture, to foster a positive attitude toward language learning, and to provide a solid foundation for basic communication skills.
Fifth grade world language students develop the four language skills through communication of: greetings, expressing likes and dislikes, commands and varied themes of daily family and school life. Communication begins in a structured format and ‘scaffolds’ toward more complex and open-ended conversations. Hands-on projects and the use of authentic texts, internet tools and videos complement the world language program. Throughout the program, activities are aimed at engaging the students in discussion of relevant topics pertaining to our world. As students explore diverse Hispanic and Francophone cultures, they arrive at their own cultural comparisons and contrasts while acquiring a love for their respective language.
In French 6, students practice conversational skills, including asking and responding to questions. Building on the foundations of discussing personal information such as activities, likes and dislikes and family members, students will learn about locations around cities and towns, making plans, and talking about the near future. The students will discuss leisure time and engage in a classic sporting event - soccer! - in the target language. As the class delves into these different bodies of vocabulary and accompanying grammar pieces, the students will do so through the lens of the French-speaking world, drawing on authentic texts and broadcasts to supplement learning.
In French 7, students build upon the foundations studied during the past year. In addition to strengthening sentence structure, correct agreement and authentic intonation and pronunciation, students learn the past tense (le passé composé) and begin to speak and write about events in the past. Students will examine celebrations around the French-speaking world as well as clothing and fashion. Travel and vacation will also be studied as students work with variety of sources to compare and contrast life in the United States with several Francophone countries. Students will create a variety of projects, develop their reading comprehension skills, and sharpen and further their grammatical breadth.
Students in French 8 strengthen their understanding and use of the French language through the study of Le Petit Nicolas, a series of short stories about a French boy and his classmates. Students grow in their understanding of the plot, character development, vocabulary and grammar throughout the year. They will create a character and assume that character’s persona in certain projects over the course of the year. Students also study thematic units including family and friends, holidays and celebrations, shopping, school and education and daily routine. Class discussions often include cultural comparisons and links to current events. Simultaneously, students study the passé composé and the imparfait, the future tense and work on direct and indirect object pronouns.
Spanish 6 - ¡Nos Gusta Hablar Español!
In 6th grade Spanish, students practice conversational skills, including asking and responding to questions. Continuing with the foundation from 5th grade, the girls will add more vocabulary and complexity. Topics such as sports and hobbies, travel and shopping, are explored to increase communication skills in speaking and in writing. Students will be introduced to vocabulary about towns and cities, transportation and vacation travel. Along with the vocabulary topics, students will be introduced to cultural aspects such as regional cuisine, sports and travel using a multimedia approach. Through the short novel, Pobre Ana, the girls will be exposed to everyday activities of a family in Mexico. A variety of resources including the comprehensive textbook Descubre I by Vista Higher Learning, provide opportunities for ongoing practice of the language with the goal of gaining confidence in speaking in the target language.
Spanish 7 - ¡Adelante!
Students go deeper and wider in their mastery of language and cultures in seventh grade Spanish. Continuing with the Descubre I text, students explore cultures of the Hispanic world. While continuing to strengthen the fundamentals of the language, i.e. solid sentence structure, correct agreement and authentic intonation and pronunciation, the girls go on to the use of the past tense (preterite). Vocabulary topics iinclude daily activiteis as getting up, getting dressed, going to bed.... Foods and celebrations are additional topics. Students will continue to be exposed to authentic conversations about these topics while preparing their own projects to support this learning. Projects may include dramatizations of daily activities, food or restaurant conversations and creating a menu. Students will also be exposed to readings of short stories to supplement the vocabulary introduced. The introduction of additional pronouns (direct, indirect and reflexive) as well as many Spanish idioms add to the increasing richness of the students’ language repertoire.
As the students explore linguistic and cultural topics, the emphasis is on putting their knowledge into action by integrating the course’s linguistic and cultural concepts in a communicative way. The other skills of listening, reading and writing are interwoven as well into each unit. In addition to the text, students acquire language mastery through a variety of sources including newspapers, magazines, websites, movies, songs, art and literature.
Spanish 8 - El Mundo Hispanoparlante
Eighth grade Spanish students advance in all skill areas of the language and delve deeper in their cultural explorations. Continuing with the Descubre text series as the framework, along with a host of other resources, students expand their thematic vocabulary, including many Spanish idioms, resulting in both richer and more authentic communication. Each trimester, the students will be exposed to a group project to promote cultural knowledge and grammar knowledge. Students will continue work with the preterite tense from 7th grade Spanish along with the introduction of the imperfect tense. Emphasis is placed on speaking and writing in the target language as well as external readings. The classic ‘picaresca’ novel, Lazarillo de Tormes is introduced in the latter part of the year to explore the disparity of classes in Spain in the 1500’s. The overarching goal of the World Language program is to facilitate communicating about the variety of topics that we explore in each unit.
This is a combined course with a mix of eighth grade and Upper School students. Students expand their knowledge of tenses and cases and also begin conjugating verbs. Translation is a big part of the course and the material becomes more complex. Students continue to be exposed to the history of Ancient Rome and take the National Latin Exam for the first time.
Full Year Courses
Level 1 is the first of two foundation building levels. This course aims to develop proficiency in speaking, listening, writing, and reading. The main objective is for the students to communicate entirely in French by the end of the year. Students discover French language and culture in an interactive environment using authentic sources. Girls learn to introduce themselves, ask and answer questions, get involved in conversations about everyday activities, and connect and compare different cultures both in speaking and writing. Language structures and vocabulary are presented in context and modeled by teachers, peers, native speakers, and multimedia resources.
Prerequisites: French 1 and signature of World Language Department Chair
Students new to Stuart will be assessed for entrance into this level.
Instruction is in French. Students are required to speak French at all times in a supportive and comfortable environment where language skills are expected to grow. There is frequent, almost daily, collaboration where the students work together to strengthen both their oral and written skills. They write, memorize, and perform frequent dialogues about the themes they are studying. Written tasks include: reflections, letters, short stories, and compositions. In cultural discussions, new vocabulary and grammar topics are introduced. All activities are created keeping in mind the use of French in an authentic environment.
Prerequisites: French 2 and signature of World Language Department Chair
Students new to Stuart will be assessed for entrance into this level.
Over the next two years, we celebrate the richness and global nature of the French language and its diverse cultures. Both in and out of the classroom, the French language is fully utilized. The principal goal of level 3 continues to be oral proficiency, with a heavy emphasis on vocabulary development and grammar to enhance and refine oral and written communication. More complex language structures, vocabulary enrichment, and listening and reading comprehension are developed at this level through selections from French literature, dialogues, periodicals, and appropriate Internet sites. Through collaborative and interactive projects and tasks, students take control of their learning as the teacher becomes a guide and students practice finding appropriate resources for learning. The use of technology is central to this process. Guiding critical questions, provided by the teacher, lead students to reach their goals for this course.
Prerequisites: French 3 and signature of World Language Department Chair
Students’ use of the target language is the expectation for this level, and the emphasis is on fully shoring up the foundation of basic grammar patterns. Students confidently discuss topics such as environmental issues, politics, economics, sustainable living, and world current affairs. Through critical thinking, conversation, and student-generated presentations, students are inspired to compare their realities to those around the francophone world. They are introduced to the literary genres of francophone works through novels’ excerpts, short stories, poetry, newspapers, magazine articles, websites, and films. The rigors of listening are increased in this level through authentic podcasts and other listening to audio files. At the conclusion of the year, based on teacher recommendation, the student will continue to French 5 or advance with additional preparation for the Advanced Placement course.
Prerequisite: French 4 and the signature of the World Language Department Chair
This course is open to students who just completed French 4.
Students will apply the grammar that they have learned into communicating effectively in both oral and written forms. Students will study French culture in depth through the use of readings, short films and videos. Additionally, students will apply their cultural knowledge in presentations and short paragraphs. Some new grammar will be introduced, as well as a wide range of vocabulary. This course is designed to build on the foundation that students have while focusing on nuanced grammar and relevant cultural topics of French speaking countries. In order to enhance oral development, students will contribute in discussions, participate in simulated conversation and present a variety of cultural topics. This course is intended to prepare students for the AP French and Culture course.
AP FRENCH LANGUAGE and CULTURE
Prerequisites: grade of A- or higher in French 5 or at the discretion of the teacher, and the signature of the World Language Department Chair. Course is the equivalent of a third–year college course.
In this course, emphasis is on the use of French for active communication. Students work towards proficiency through activities designed to improve their aural/oral skills, reading comprehension, grammar usage, critical thinking skills, informal and formal writing skills. Students are required to take the AP exam. Class is conducted entirely in French in order to prepare students to communicate with proficiency in the three modes of communication: interpersonal, interpretive and presentational as defined by the ACTFL “Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century.” Students will communicate exclusively in French during class. Students will gain knowledge and understanding of Francophone cultures, make connections with other disciplines, compare their own language and culture with French language and Francophone culture, and participate in their French community at school and beyond the school setting.
Throughout the course, the following six themes will be studied: Global Challenges, Science and Technology, Contemporary Life, Personal and Public Identities, Families and Communities, and Beauty and Aesthetics. Students will be encouraged and expected to express different views on real world issues that relate to the six themes. Students will be exposed to a wide range of authentic documents designed for native French speakers. They will read texts from magazines and newspapers, and literary works from Francophone writers, either on paper or online. Students will have essay assignments and other writing activities to enhance their writing skills, and will participate in diverse oral activities to refine their speaking skills in all communication modes. Students will have weekly grammar assignments that will be completed at home and are responsible for correcting the grammar assignments prior to the weekly grammar quiz, using a different color pen and the answer key that will be provided after completion of each grammar chapter.
Open to grade 12 only
Welcome to the senior seminar course, a film-based course that will help build on your French speaking and writing skills while actively engaging in analyses of French culture. This course will focus on developing your oral expression by building on and perfecting grammar structures that you already know within sophisticated contexts. Our main topics of discussion will derive from several French movies that we will watch throughout the year, accompanied by current readings, podcasts, news articles and broadcasts to place each film within its contemporary cultural context and expand our understanding of the topics from a global perspective. Our readings and discussions will ultimately introduce you to the ways in which cultural perspectives can influence people’s behaviors, practices, and beliefs, and allow you to understand your own culture in a new light.
Full Year Courses
LATIN 1 (formerly Latin Studies)
Open to grades 9-12. No prerequisite.
“Carpe Diem.” In this course, students are introduced to various readings in mythology, ancient history, and Roman life in a way that gives them the ability to easily comprehend Latin. Students’ knowledge of the classics will be expanded while structured exercises will clarify English as well as Latin grammar and vocabulary.
LATIN 2 (formerly Intermediate Latin 1)
Prerequisites: Latin 1 and the signature of World Language Department Chair
“Veni, vidi, vici” This course is a continuation of Latin 1, with special grammatical emphasis on the various uses of the subjunctive. The course also includes adapted readings from Livy, Caesar, Pliny, and Cicero. In the cultural component, students will delve into the Carthaginian dynasty and Hannibal’s conquests. “Vox clamantis in deserto”: Students will explore excerpts from the great Latin authors Asconius, Cicero, Pliny, Eutropius, and Petronius. Students are introduced to the dactylic hexameter. They also begin to read and translate Caesar’s Gallic Wars.
LATIN 3 (formerly Intermediate Latin 2)
Prerequisites: Latin 1 and 2 and the signature of World Language Department Chair
“Veni, vidi, vici” This course is a continuation of Latin 2, with special grammatical emphasis on the various uses of the subjunctive. The course also includes adapted readings from Livy, Caesar, Pliny, and Cicero. In the cultural component, students will delve into the Carthaginian dynasty and Hannibal’s conquests. “Vox clamantis in deserto”: Students will explore excerpts from the great Latin authors Asconius, Cicero, Pliny, Eutropius, and Petronius. Students are introduced to the dactylic hexameter. They also begin to read and translate Caesar’s Gallic Wars.
HONORS LATIN 4 / AP LATIN: VIRGIL and CAESAR
Prerequisites: Latin 1, 2, and 3, and signature of World Language Department chair
“Ne Credite Graecos dona ferentes.” This course is the study of Virgil’s Aeneid, covered in the AP syllabus. Excerpts from books 1, 2, 4, and 6 are translated and analyzed in depth as literature. Caesar’s Gallic Wars, books 1,4,5, and 6 are also studied. Students will work towards the development of critical thinking skills, and acquire proficiency in the writing of essays. In addition, students will be exposed to various comprehension test items from other authors that make up the AP exam. Students may either elect to take the Latin 4 course with AP designation or as an Honors course without AP credit. Students in the AP class are required to take the AP exam.
Full Year Courses
Students are introduced to Spanish language and Spanish speaking cultures in an interactive and collaborative environment. Students in Spanish 1 will learn how to introduce themselves, talk about their likes and dislikes, talk about their families and their life at school. They will be able to ask questions, involve each other in conversations, and connect with culture in Hispanic Communities. Students use authentic materials as resources. Language patterns and vocabulary are presented in context and modeled by teachers, peers, native speakers, and multimedia resources. Technology is incorporated into the program as a support for learning and for practicing all skills.
Prerequisites: Spanish 1. Students new to Stuart, who have studied a language in previous years, could be required to take a placement test to enter this level, as determined by the Head of Upper School.
Students will be immersed in Spanish. The expectation is that the proficiency of each student will improve by the end of the year. There is frequent collaboration where students work together to strengthen their skills and share ideas. Students write, memorize, and complete tasks which center around specific themes, language patterns and vocabulary featured in the lesson. Written tasks include: reflections, correspondence, short stories, and compositions. In cultural discussions, new vocabulary and important historical events of the country we are discussing are noted. Exposure to individual Spanish speaking cultures is done via authentic readings, newspapers, dialogues, and Internet multimedia resources.
Prerequisites: Successful completion of Spanish 1. Spanish 2 Students new to Stuart will be assessed for entrance into this level and placed by the Head of Upper School according to her skill and her schedule.
Spanish is used to communicate, formally and informally, at this level. Complex language structures and vocabulary are introduced through literature, news media, periodicals, and appropriate internet sites. Short stories are read with the goal of learning vocabulary, experiencing language patterns and studying the realities of the cultures. Films serve as a visual introduction to current and relevant themes of the countries we study. Through collaborative interactive projects and tasks, students take control of their learning. The teacher becomes a guide for students as students learn to take more responsibility for their learning. The use of technology is central to this process. Guiding critical questions, provided by the teacher, lead students to reach their goals as they become proficient in all skills.
Prerequisites: Successful completion of Spanish 3
Spanish is used almost exclusively at this level. The emphasis in this course is on the strengthening and completion of the foundation of basic grammar language patterns. Students have opportunities for creative discussions centered around: the environment, politics, films, social issues, education, family, and women. The exploration of all Hispanic cultures inspires students to make comparisons to their own realities. Students use oral and critical thinking skills to discuss cultures. Analysis of authentic literature is further developed at this level and is an integral part of this course. Students are introduced to the literary genres of Hispanic works through short stories, poetry, newspaper, magazine articles, the internet, and films. Creative and collaborative projects are encouraged and often designed by students with the guidance of the teacher. At the end of the year, the teacher decides, with the student, whether AP or Spanish 5 is the most appropriate level for her.
Prerequisites: Successful completion of Spanish 4
Open to students who have completed Spanish 4 and who wish to enroll in an additional year of language. It is also a stepping-stone to AP if the student is on that track.
All skills are further developed and refined as students progress towards proficiency and mastery. Curriculum in this course is developed and implemented around the following themes; global challenges, beauty and esthetics, identity, science and technology, and family and community. Collaborative, interactive, and critical thinking tasks support the development of all skills. Authentic Peninsular and Latin American literature is introduced. The teacher provides students with guiding questions related to the tasks.
AP SPANISH LANGUAGE and CULTURE
Prerequisites: Successful completion of either Spanish 4 or Spanish 5 or at the discretion of both the student and the teacher.
This course is the equivalent of a third–year college/university course.
Spanish is used for all written and oral communication. Students will work towards proficiency through activities designed to improve their aural/oral skills and reading comprehension, concentrating on the five central items of the AP Spanish Language and Culture exam. World issues and challenges, technology, contemporary life, individual identities, aesthetics and beauty are a few of the themes students will explore through literature and the media. Authentic literature and other documents related to our themes are presented in their entirety. Students are required to take the AP exam.