Speaking Chinese may not seem so foreign for Williamson County students in the near future. The district is testing new curriculum for language classes, and they could expand it to every grade.
Some school administrators arrived to work an hour early Wednesday to try out new foreign language classes for students in their district.
"We're writing the curriculum. We're investigating what the best practices are, the best way to deliver this instruction in the classroom. And the adults are the guinea pigs," said Carol Birdsong with Williamson County schools.
The goal of a new strategic plan is to offer foreign languages to Williamson County students from kindergarten through high school, starting with Spanish and Chinese.
"There's a large Spanish-speaking population in our county now and those surrounding. As far as Chinese goes, we want to prepare students to be able to communicate in a global economy," Birdsong said.
Instructors said it is much easier for younger kids to absorb the information, so they are trying new methods to set words in motion by using games and physical activity.
"My experience has told me that students do not like to be just talked to. And I think any good teacher knows that that is just not going to cut the mustard," said Spanish instructor Christi Gilliland.
Students won't be practicing these languages until mid-October when the language classes are first introduced at select schools. And then in the spring, the school board is expected to vote on how to budget for the classes across all county schools.
Copyright WSMV 2012 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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