Why is two-way dual immersion the recommended way to learn a new language?

The advantage of a two-way dual-language program is that it combines native speakers with new-language learners. Each student has the opportunity to be both a first-language model and a second-language learner. The Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA) states some of the benefits for both groups of language students in a two-way program. “Language-minority students build their native language proficiency, which in the long run strengthens their acquisition of the majority language (English). English speakers develop proficiency in a new language, and their English skills are strengthened by this additional cognitive process. They maintain use of English in the majority culture, so their English skills do not diminish during the time they are immersed in the new language, and their English school achievement eventually outperforms that of native English speakers who have been schooled in English-only instruction.” The University of Minnesota’s Center for Advanced... Continue reading Why is two-way dual immersion the recommended way to learn a new language?

Our new-look elementary gradebooks/Parent Portal

If something looks different when you check grades in Parent Portal (aka Infinite Campus), it’s by design. As part of our focus on personalized learning, we modified Parent Portal to match a grading system that measures learning — the concepts a student knows and can apply. Too often in the past, traditional grades were goals to reach in order to stop learning. That’s not productive or a reflection of how people actually learn. Learning is a process — sometimes it comes quickly, sometimes it requires extra review and practice. And a final grade, especially at elementary, should reflect a year’s worth of learning. Here’s what’s different in Parent Portal: Subjects (math, reading, etc.) are organized by Power Standard and learning targets. Each subject has Power Standards and under each Power Standard are learning targets. Students show their teacher they have learned each target and once all targets are learned, we are confident the student can apply that Power Standard.... Continue reading Our new-look elementary gradebooks/Parent Portal