Foreign Language

  High School Level 1 (H1) foreign language course focuses on the development of communicative competence in the target language and understanding of the culture(s) of the people who speak the language. It assumes that the students have minimal or no prior knowledge of the language and culture. An important component of language classes is the use of the language beyond the classroom in the real world. The integration of technology is an important tool in accessing authentic information in the target language and in providing students the opportunity to interact with native speakers. By the end of Level I, students will exhibit Novice-Mid level proficiency in speaking and writing and Novice-High level proficiency in listening, and reading (ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines).

  High School Level 2 (H2) foreign language course focuses on the continued development of communicative competence in the target language and understanding of the culture(s) of the people who speak the language. It assumes that the students have successfully completed a Level I course or are at a Novice-Mid level of proficiency. Students study with a greater level of accuracy when using basic language structures, and they are exposed to more complex features of the language. They continue to develop communication skills surrounding their immediate world and daily life activities, read material on familiar topics, and write short, directed compositions. Because students may begin formal language learning at various stages of their cognitive development, teachers adjust vocabulary and content in order to reflect developmentally appropriate interests.

  High School Level 3 (H3) foreign language course focuses on the continued development of communicative competence in the target language and understanding of the culture(s) of the people who speak the language. It assumes that the students have completed a Level II course or are at a Novice-Mid to Novice-High level of proficiency. Students use basic language structures with accuracy and recombine learned material to express their thoughts. They are exposed to more complex features of the language, moving from concrete to some abstract concepts. Because students may begin formal language learning at various stages of development, teachers adjust vocabulary and content to reflect developmentally appropriate interests.

  High School Level 4 (H4) foreign language course focuses on the continued development of communicative competence in the target language and understanding of the culture(s) of the people who speak the language. It assumes that the students have completed a Level III course or are at a Novice-High to Intermediate-Low level of proficiency. During this course, most students should move into the intermediate level of proficiency. They gain confidence in recombining learned material of the language, creating in the language to express their own thoughts, interacting with other speakers of the language, understanding oral and written messages in the foreign language, and making oral and written presentations in the target language. They are exposed to more complex features of the language, moving from concrete to more abstract concepts. Students are able to understand material presented on a variety of topics related to contemporary events and issues in the target culture(s). Because students may begin formal language learning at various stages of development, teachers adjust vocabulary and content to reflect developmentally appropriate interests.

  AP Chinese is divided into 10 thematic units. Each unit focuses on different aspects of traditional Chinese culture and rapidly changing values of modern China. Units include (1) previous content review and new content pre-reading activity; (2) grammar explanation, drills, and review; (3) exercises and quizzes (vocabulary, grammar, and sentence patterns, etc.); (4) discussion of the reading; and (5) listening and reading comprehension; speaking and writing practice. In addition to teacher lectures, there are many group activities implemented based on students’ language proficiencies (same levels and mixed levels) and learning styles (multiple intelligences). These activities include students interviewing themselves, group discussion, group presentation, group project, pair editing, skits, debates, etc.. Culture elements are put into practice (paper cutting, New Year couplet writing, cooking, music, movies, etc.) There will be two weeks review time for the AP exam in May.

  AP Japanese language and culture course is designed to be comparable to approximately 300 hours of college-level classroom instruction similar to the corresponding college courses. The AP course supports students’ communicative competence in Japanese. In this course, students learn to develop fluency and refinement in the four language skills: speaking, writing, listening, and reading in real-life situations. Students will also study the language through content-based curriculum, such as Japanese history, tradition, contemporary culture, and social issues. The course curriculum is built on a framework established by the National Standards five goal areas: communication, cultures, connections, comparisons, and communities. The focused themes help students to deepen their understanding of the language and the unique perspectives of Japanese culture.