With an emphasis on the development of international mindedness, THS recognizes the importance of the study of world languages and culture. All students in grades K-8 study both Mandarin and Spanish.
Studies indicate that children who learn a second language show greater cognitive development in such areas as mental flexibility, creativity, divergent thinking and higher order thinking skills. By offering our students Mandarin, Spanish and English, THS provides instruction in languages economically, politically and culturally important in the 21st Century.
Spanish at THS
The Spanish program is designed for students to develop communicative competency in listening, speaking, reading, writing, and the Latin culture. The progression is gradual and linguistically appropriate for all ages. As students progress through the program, they are encouraged to take linguistic risks, be vulnerable, and use their intuition. Differentiated instruction complements various learning styles, abilities and language backgrounds. Our Spanish program is aligned with the National K-12 Foreign Language Standards. Our goal is to thoroughly prepare our students for a strong fundamental background in Spanish I.
Mandarin at THS
Students are introduced to the phonetic system of modern, standard Mandarin Chinese, including pin yin, transliteration and tones. Students learn to recognize characters and sentence patterns as they develop listening and speaking skills, communicating about themselves and their environment using sentences containing basic language structures. Activities to practice oral and aural skills include dialogue, interviews, surveys, presentations of poems, songs and traditional games. Throughout the program, students will gain insight into China’s diverse cultures and customs.
THS recognizes the critical importance of place-based, experiential learning. For this reason, the School offers optional, extracurricular international trips to Spanish and Mandarin-speaking countries to enhance our student’s understanding of world languages and cultures.
Our international trips have included travel to Costa Rica, China and Spain.