Elementary Spanish Program

Newsletter - Spring 2009


¡Gracias! Thank you for your child’s participation in ESP’s classes this year. We appreciate the opportunity to share Spanish with your child and to help him/her begin a journey in becoming a multi-lingual world citizen.

To show our gratitude for your participation in the program, we would like to offer you a $100 discount on next year’s tuition. We are extending this discount to all registrations that we receive before May 15, 2009.

All of our classes have followed the new curriculum, Viva el Español. As a result, we expect a seamless transition from one class level to the next. Therefore, if your child completed Auditory 1 this year, he/she will progress to Auditory 2 next year. Likewise, Auditory 2 students will progress to the Reading & Writing level. Reading & Writing students will progress to the Spanish Literature level.

Registration forms for ESP classes held throughout the BVSD, JeffCo, Adams 12, and Denver school districts, as well as private schools, are available in the enclosed packet. Forms are also available in the literature display at your child’s school and online at www.kidsspeakspanish.org.

Register by choosing any of the following options:

  1. Online
  2. Mail the registration form with payment to 1919 14th St, Suite 421 Boulder, CO 80302
  3. Fax the form to 303-998-1592
  4. Call to register 303-440-7196

St. Vrain Valley School District parents should contact their community school's office for registration materials.

  • Lyons 303-823-6915
  • Niwot 303-652-2452

We look forward to seeing your child next year. Please contact the ESP office with any questions at 303-440-7196 or kidsspeakspanish@juno.com. ¡Hasta pronto!

In this issue:

New Curriculum: Viva el Español

An ESP class

In the fall of 2008, ESP implemented a new curriculum for all levels. We chose a curriculum that is appealing to all learning styles and provides a complete set of lesson plans for all levels. The daily routine is the same for all classes, whereas components of the activities vary. The curriculum provides a wide variety of activities that keep the students engaged.

Every class starts with an opening activity, often a song or a dialog. Class continues with review-types of activities, often a game and homework check, before the new language is modeled. In addition to an inspirational and fun teacher, the class puppet, flashcards, verses, crafts, songs, games, interactive activities, and workbooks are the tools that help motivate the children to learn Spanish. At the end of the class, students line up as a final activity and give the teacher a word/sentence/question from the lesson before leaving the class room.

  • The puppet is a fun and efficient tool when introducing new dialogs. The puppet reduces any stress students may experience upon hearing unfamiliar vocabulary and phrases. The puppet also offers an opportunity for the students to listen to new dialogs and phrases several times before he/she is expected to reproduce the language. While a few parents expressed concerns that the puppet may be childish, many embraced the puppet as a good learning tool after observing a class.
  • The flashcards are helpful to teachers and students, providing already-created visual aides for new vocabulary and dialogs.
  • Songs and poems add a lyrical element to the language that aides in pronunciation; this method is very popular with the younger students.
  • TPR (Total Physical Response) is a technique that incorporates modeling the language with movements (e.g. sit down, stand up, walk like an elephant, etc.). This technique engages all persons involved, adds physical activity, and works well with those with short attention spans. Workbooks and homework assignments reinforce the material taught in the class. Parents and children appreciate and enjoy the ability to work on the language outside of class.

The ESP staff plans to reevaluate the curriculum in order to ensure that we have the appropriate materials for different levels, from kindergartners to 5th graders. Please help us by mailing in the parents’ survey and sharing your feedback.

You can find more information about the ¡Viva el Español! curriculum at: http://www.wrightgroup.com/family.html?gid=8

Bienvenidos! ESP welcomes Lyons Elementary

Immediately after school every Monday and Wednesday, approximately 50 students attend one of five new Spanish classes offered by the Elementary Spanish Program at Lyons Elementary. The initiation of Spanish classes at Lyons is due in large part to the efforts of Rob Orbanosky, Principal at Lyons, and Bronwyn Muldoon, a parent representative at the school. Like many of our ESP family members, Bronwyn wanted her daughter to begin learning Spanish at a young age. She worked with Mr. “O” and wrote a grant proposal to offset the cost of the tuition for Lyons students, recruited parent volunteers, helped ESP find teachers in Lyons, and negotiated with St. Vrain administrators. But Bronwyn isn’t done yet. She is working on establishing a scholarship fund to guarantee that all interested children can participate in the program. It is Bronwyn’s hope “that the Spanish program will be at our school for many years and that we, over time, can implement all 6 levels of the program.”

Five Spanish teachers and parent volunteers lead the children through fun activities in Spanish following the curriculum, Viva el Español. The Spanish classes appeal to all learning styles and engage the children in fun routines and activities. Basic vocabulary is taught through games and songs. “Simon Says” becomes “Simon Dice,” and “Duck, Duck, Goose” becomes “Pato, Pato, Ganzo.” All of the students have age-appropriate workbooks to reinforce what they are learning in class. The teachers are supported by a diverse lesson plan for each class and also participate in the continuing training offered by ESP.

The Elementary Spanish Program congratulates Lyons for giving their students the opportunity to take Spanish classes at a reduced cost. ESP is very proud to work in a community that values foreign language learning from an early age and hopes that other community representatives will be inspired by Mr. Orbanosky and Bronwyn Muldoon and the wonderful learning environment at Lyons Elementary.

Enhancing Lessons with Fun & Effective Activities

Learning a second language is enhanced with interactive games and activities outside of the classroom. Languages for Kids provides fun workbooks and games that will boost the language-learning experience. Visit the website to learn more! www.langbks.com.

Fun Summer Spanish Practice Activities

It is very important that students keep practicing their newly acquired Spanish skills over the summer. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Pull out the summer practice activities from this newsletter and have fun with your kids while completing the activities. Have the children bring the sheets to their teacher in the fall.
  • Sign your child up for one or more of ESP’s summer camps offered in Boulder, Longmont, and/or Denver. The registration forms can be found in this newsletter or online at www.kidsspeakspanish.org
  • Small classes of 5 students over the summer may be available (upon demand). Children must be at least 7 years of age and at the reading and writing level. We hope to offer a class in Longmont and one in Boulder on Monday and Wednesday mornings.
  • Private tutoring can be arranged; we would be happy to provide you with a referral as we have many qualified teachers who also tutor independently.

Please check back to our website for our summer updates or call us for more information: 303-440-7196, or write to us at kidsspeakspanish@juno.com.

Introducing ESP’s New Office Manager and Office Assistant

Please welcome Stephanie Snaider as ESP’s new office manager. Stephanie is a BVSD parent that moved to Boulder with her family in 2008 after living and working in Ecuador. Stephanie has two children, one in elementary school and one in middle school. She is dedicated to early secondary-language acquisition and contributing her knowledge and skills to serve our non-profit organization and the community. We are thrilled to have her on our staff!

Omar Anduaga Bocanegra is our new office assistant who also teaches Auditory and Reading & Writing classes for ESP, as well as adult Spanish classes. Omar is an attorney from Peru who significantly contributes to our organization; we are thankful that he has joined our team.

We appreciate your support

In an effort to keep tuition as low as possible, we accept donations of goods and services from businesses and organizations. ESP thanks the following individuals and companies for their generous support:

Principals, Secretaries, & Teachers that believe in our mission, help with rooms and support ESP teachers

ESP Computer Maintenance & Repair - Joe Barger

ESP Web site Design, Maintenance, and Upgrades - Dean Garyet

If you know of local groups that might be interested in donating services or directly funding ESP classes, please let us know.

Thank you!

ESP Wish List

  • Puppets
  • Crayons
  • Markers
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Construction Paper
  • Folders
  • Binders
  • CD Players
  • Cameras

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Please send comments or suggestions to Elementary Spanish Program at kidsspeakspanish@gmail.com.