At Somers Intermediate School, students are exploring the Spanish language in a whole new way.
“It’s fun. I was happy because I like Kahoots,” said fifth-grader Sofia Castellano, referring to the game-based learning platform. “I knew colors and animals already. In art, I learned parts of your face. Sometimes I talk to my grandma because she speaks Spanish.”
The program started last year with third and fourth grade, then expanded this year to include fifth-grade students. Currently, Señorita Purnell and Señora Stoecker push into a variety of classes, including art, music, and library. Language-related activities start with learning new vocabulary and continue through games, songs, and scavenger hunts.
“I would do Spanish,” said fourth-grader Liam Gannon about taking a world language class in middle school.
During a recent fourth-grade art class, students learned the words for different shapes and features of animals in Spanish, helping to expose them to the language conversationally and informally. Students earned Yo dije (I said) tickets for using vocabulary words related to their project.
“I said what shapes I used in Spanish. At the end of the class, they draw a ticket out of the bowl and that person gets to choose a prize,” said fourth-grader Eli Mundis.
In a fifth-grade classroom, students studied family vocabulary, completed a worksheet activity together, and finished their lesson with a Kahoot quiz game to strengthen their retention of the new words, helping to build excitement for world language studies in middle school.