Lowell School offers Spanish as a special subject
beginning informally in the Pre-Primary School. Formal instruction begins in
Kindergarten and continues through Middle School. Spanish-speaking teaching
assistants or lead teachers in Kindergarten through 2nd grade teach Spanish lessons and integrate the language
into various daily activities and gatherings. Beginning in 3rd grade, students take Spanish classes with one of the School's two Spanish language teachers. Along with increasing the
instructional time (Kindergarten and 1st grade meet once a week, 2nd - 5th meet twice a week), the quantity
and complexity of the vocabulary and grammar increases as students move to the
The K-3 Spanish program is an exploratory program that has
been adapted from a well-established textbook program. The program’s ultimate
goal is for students to gain language proficiency, as well as cultural
awareness. To introduce and reinforce the language and cultural content, teachers use traditional activities and aids such as copying, labeling, echoing, dictation,
and practice sheets, as well as more interactive and imaginative exercises such
as singing, playing games, dancing, cooking, role-playing, crafting art
projects, and using technology tools including iMovie, PowerPoint, Keynote, and
Pixie. Class activities are many and varied to engage students with different
learning styles and multiple intelligences. In addition to teaching Spanish
language and Hispanic culture, we seek to emphasize and reinforce the School’s
social curriculum goals.
4th and 5th Grades
The 4th and 5th grade Spanish program
builds upon knowledge and skills students acquired in K-3 grades with added
emphasis on communication skills and the culture of Spanish-speaking countries.
Students do a thorough review of vocabulary topics studied throughout the
previous years and expand upon them. In addition, students begin a formal study
of simple grammar concepts that are introduced through various interactive
activities that include oral presentations, games, play-acting, songs, voice
recordings, computer games, physical activities, art projects, and technology. Many of the culminating projects in 5th Grade include the use of computer
software such as PowerPoint, Pixie, Clay Animation, or iMovie.
The Spanish curriculum is integrated with the Lowell grade
level themes as follows:
Kindergarten – Patterns
Students begin to identify patterns in familiar greetings and Spanish phrases.
1st Grade – Interdependence
We address Interdependence through the two main units:
Connections to Nature and Connections to People.
2nd Grade – Adaptation
Adaptation is incorporated as students learn their ABC’s
in Spanish and reflect on how the alphabet in Spanish is similar to and
different from the alphabet in English.
3rd Grade – Change
The theme of Change is evident
in 3rd graders’ “Mi retrato” and “Retratos
de familia” projects, as they write about themselves, as well as their evolving
Fourth Grade – Systems
In 4th grade students begin to
understand and appreciate the system of the Spanish language: how, for example,
the gender of a noun influences the form of the adjective. They learn that the
various parts of speech combine to form a rich and complex language.
Fifth Grade – Structures
The theme of Structures is addressed in daily oral activities
and culminating projects as 5th graders practice to use grammar
structures of the Spanish language to become effective communicators.