The Spanish Department seeks to enable students to communicate in the Spanish language with ease and accuracy, to grow in understanding and appreciation of Spanish-speaking societies, and to engage successfully in a world of ever increasing diversity and multiculturalism.
Exposure to Spanish language and culture is both enlightening and practical, enhancing and enriching the lives of all students who meaningfully engage the language. As they learn the skills necessary to communicate in Spanish - reading, writing, listening, and speaking - students gain a valuable foundation for success in their future academic, professional, travel, and leisure pursuits. As they become informed about the world's Spanish-speaking cultures, their awareness and acceptance of diversity increases and expands, empowering them to communicate effectively with the many Spanish-speaking peoples of the world. Knowledge of diverse customs, traditions, histories, and artistic achievements fosters increased respect for people of other backgrounds. This enriched perspective is a true advantage in today's global, interdependent society.
Pedagogically, the Department employs varied multimedia techniques across the curriculum to make the learning process interactive and rewarding. SMART technology, which facilitates the incorporation of multimedia sources, such as Voicethread, CDs, films, MP3s, PowerPoint, etc., into the core curriculum, serves to further the goal of maximizing the use of Spanish within each class. Small classes and dedicated teachers ensure individual attention and daily use of Spanish by each student in the program. Field trips, both local and abroad, as well as School sponsored cultural presentations and guest speakers, support the goal of making the learning process experiential and participatory. The Department works to integrate Spanish language and appreciation for world cultures into the general life of the School community.
While the School requires that students pursue at least three years of study in one language, most Spanish students voluntarily pursue upper level electives. Honors and standard level courses are available at all levels of study. AP courses are offered at the upper levels of the curriculum.