Questions & Answers
- Why begin a second language in kindergarten? The young child's brain is developmentally ready to learn language. A child has twice as many synapses (connections) in the brain as an adult. The young brain must use these connections or lose them. There is a window of opportunity in which a child learns a first language normally. After this period, the brain becomes slowly less receptive. Young children can learn as many spoken languages as you can allow them to hear systematically and regularly at the same time. Children just have this capacity. When children wait until high school to start studying a foreign language, the job is much harder.
- What is immersion? Language immersion is an approach to second language instruction in which the usual learning activities are conducted in a second language. This means that the new language is the medium of instruction as well as the object of instruction. Immersion classes follow the same curricula, and in some instances, use the same materials (translated into the target language) as those used in the non-immersion schools of their district. The goal of the language immersion classroom is language acquisition. In the early years, immersion teachers realize that students will not understand everything they say. Teachers use body language, visuals, manipulatives, exaggerated facial expressions, and expressive intonation to communicate meaning. In kindergarten, it is common for students to speak English with each other and when responding to their teacher. As the years progress, students naturally use more of the immersion language. (Fortune and Tedick, 2003)
- Why immersion? According to the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA), at the University of Minnesota, immersion programs are the most effective type of foreign language program. Students can be expected to reach higher levels of a second language proficiency than students in other school-based language programs.
- What grade levels are offered? Currently in the 2013-2014 school year we offer Spanish Immersion for pre-school (fee based), kindergarten and 1st grade. Each year another grade level will be added. By the 2020-2021 school year we will offer pre-school through 8th grade Spanish Immersion.
- Why should I register my child at Creekside? Creekside is a unique campus that offers a nurturing and positive learning environment for pre-school through kindergarten age only.
- Do you have before and after school care? We offer an ESS Program that is a before/after school day care program offered by the Alpine Union School District. The program operates on the campus of both Boulder Oaks and Creekside Early Learning Center. The ESS Program is financially independent of the Alpine Union School District. The program operates on the tuition paid by parents. All students enrolled in the Alpine School District are eligible to attend the ESS program. Summer session serves students that will be in grades K - 8, in the fall.