May 19, 2015
Watch as HP kindergartners try out new Passport to Spanish lessons

Kindergartners in Kaye Smith's classroom at Bradfield recently played a game of Simon Says, but with a twist - the game was called Simón Dice, and it was played completely in Spanish. The game is one of many classroom activities that will be a part of the Passport to Spanish program, which will debut next school year with kindergartners and first-graders at all four HPISD elementary schools.

The game was led by Eric Inboden and Diana Perez, the district's Passport to Spanish teachers and curriculum designers. The duo is in the midst of finalizing the curriculum and hiring teachers for the program, which will feature three 30-minute Spanish lessons each week.

"We want our students to be competitive, and we want them to be global leaders," Perez said. "Passport to Spanish equips our students with that second language and a strong base in order to be able to do that."

Passport to Spanish will add one grade level to the program each year until full implementation is reached in grades K-6. Foreign language classes are currently available to students in grades 7-12. 

Inboden said that the expectation is to have students who complete the K-6 sequence engage in simple conversations, speak and write short sentences and read and understand brief text in Spanish. Teachers and students will speak in Spanish during a majority of the program's lessons, often 90 percent of the time.

Visit the Passport to Spanish website to learn more about the program. Click here to watch a video of kindergartners participating in the program's initial curriculum lessons.