Spanish at Wakefield
Wakefield’s Spanishprograms are carefully crafted, conscientiously delivered and frequentlyhighlighted. Wakefield serves as the home for Arlington Public Schools’high school level of the Spanish dual-language partial immersion program. Theimmersion program at Wakefield is designed to continue and expand on the studyof Spanish language and culture begun in elementary and middle school inArlington Public Schools. Our dual-language immersion program has proveneffective for a wide variety of reasons. Our immersion students dosignificantly better than average in the AP exams, and often, these studentsenroll in additional language classes, such as French, Japanese and AmericanSign Language. Moreover, immersion students have participated in academiccompetitions such as the Science Olympiad and NBC4’s It’s Academic. Thisyear, Wakefield made available two new classes in the immersion program,Intensified Biology and Economics and Personal Finance. Recently, a groupof Hispanic students from the Spanish Immersion Biology class were invited tothe White House to screen the movie Underwater Dreams and see a roboticsdemonstration from NASA. And in 2014, our valedictorian was animmersion student.The Spanish for Fluent Speakers classes are designed to further the reading,writing, and oral language of Spanish heritage speakers, while deepening theirknowledge of the diversity and richness of the Hispanic culture. Usually,Spanish heritage speakers are English Language Learners, and may struggle withEnglish in the academic context. The Spanish for Fluent Speakers programmakes cross-curricular connections, and teachers help students recognizepatterns in the two languages and provide literacy skills in Spanish which canthen be applied to the acquisition of English. Wakefield’s LiteracyProgram, the Schaeffer Writing Model, has been this year’s professionaldevelopment for the entire faculty at Wakefield, and the entire school has beenusing the technique with all classes. The methodology has proveneffective in the Spanish classroom, as evidenced in the writing samplescollected and scored, and which show a stronger, clearer purpose in the voiceof the writer.
Wakefield’s Advanced Placement classes, AP Spanish Language and AP SpanishLiterature, are designed for students typically in their third or fourth yearof high-school level Spanish, and may integrate immersion, SFS and regularSpanish students into the same classroom. The AP classes are rigorouscollege level classes that provide an opportunity to gain skills that willenhance a student’s college application, and we were proud that 97%of our students passed the test in 2015.
Senior Project, a graduation requirement at Wakefield, is offered to studentswho want to complete it partially or entirely in Spanish. It trulyembodies the culmination of many years of dual-language education and itencompasses the linguistic and cultural aspects of Spanish-speakingcountries. Recent examples of projects done either partially orcompletely in Spanish include: La Guardia Civil de España; Murales de laRevolución Mexicana; En los pasos de mi padre: un estudio sobre la inmigraciónen los Estados Unidos.
The faculty is without question the most dedicated teachers you willfind. Our teachers seek out opportunities for professional developmentthat enhance their practice, and have been selected in recent years asrecipients of scholarships from the Education Office of the Embassy to attendsummer sessions in Spain. Moreover, given the fact that Arlington PublicSchools is providing one-to-one devices to students on a four-year rollout, thefaculty has been exploring and using several platforms that streamline assessments,encourage collaboration and provide a safe online environment for students towork and show what they know. Current offerings include: Spanish Immersion I, taught by Rosa Navas Spanish Immersion II, taught by Aymee BuzziSpanish Immersion Intensified Biology, taught by Zoralis GonzalezSpanish for Fluent Speakers I, taught by Katie BeverageSpanish for Fluent Speakers II Zoralis GonzalezSpanish for Fluent Speakers III, taught by Natasha LópezSpanish I, taught by Katie BeverageSpanish II, taught by Rosa Navas and Katie BeverageSpanish III taught by Zoralis Gonzalez Spanish IV, taught by Aymee Buzzi, and Natasha LópezSpanish V, taught by Magaly RederAP Spanish Language and Culture, taught by Magaly Reder, and Natasha López.AP Spanish Literature, taught by Aymee BuzziSenior Project, taught by Rosa Navas Students in Spanish levels 1-4 interested in having a Spanish Honor Society student help them prepare for end-of-year testing, should see Mrs. Reder or Mrs. Beverage and wewill put them in touch with an SHH member.