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Old Yesterday, 08:31 AM
 
449 posts, read 145,949 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harpaint View Post
High school students should be required to have competence in English, and not at the 3rd grade level that many only have now. Spanish is not needed in most of the US. It's up to native Spanish speakers to learn English, not native English speakers to learn Spanish.
It was only a matter of time...
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Old Yesterday, 08:47 AM
 
6,232 posts, read 3,513,466 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by River City Rocky View Post
It was only a matter of time...
I was responding to the person who said learning Spanish should be required for HS graduation in the US. I feel speaking English is more important than speaking Spanish. Do you disagree or what?
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Old Yesterday, 08:50 AM
 
378 posts, read 224,134 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harpaint View Post
I was responding to the person who said learning Spanish should be required for HS graduation in the US. I feel speaking English is more important than speaking Spanish. Do you disagree or what?
Requiring a foreign language in general and giving the students options where feasible, yes (for able-minded students). Requiring Spanish specifically (unless it's the only language the school can teach), no.
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Old Yesterday, 10:07 AM
 
Location: Raleigh
7,482 posts, read 5,527,959 times
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There are some (I think mostly charter or magent) schools around here that do immersion programs.

Personally, the way we teach it waiting til 6th or 7th grade is too late. The brain has developed away from it. I say that as someone that at one point spoke great Spanish and still does ok with what I know. But its "use it or lose it."
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Old Yesterday, 10:26 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,098 posts, read 26,271,847 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by citizensadvocate View Post
Interesting, I know that Quebec generally use French.
Though how well does Canada teach French and Foreign languages in the English Speaking provinces, as well as English in Quebec?

.
As you might expect, the vast majority of schools in Quebec are French-medium and the vast majority of schools outside Quebec are English-medium.


So we'll go with that assumption for this answer.


Schools in English Canada pretty much all have French as the second language taught. The amount of French the kids get varies from province to province and even sometimes from city to city or from school to school.


But the bottom line is that if you go to school in English in Canada, probably at a minimum 5-6 years during K-12 you will have French taught to you as a second language.


Also, there is a special program in some English Canadian schools which is called French immersion. I believe that between 10-15% of kids are in this program. Basically, they go to school in French all day, except for English class. But the school is still technically an English school and run by an English board. Communications with parents and stuff are all in English. The kids do math, phys ed, science, etc. in French even though they're all anglos.


These schools have a much, much higher success rate of producing kids with good second language proficiency in French than the majority of schools who simply offer your regular FSL class a few times a week.
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Old Yesterday, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,098 posts, read 26,271,847 times
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Second part of my answer:


In Quebec, English as a second language is mandatory every single year from Grade 1 in elementary until the end of high school.


Quebec doesn't really have "English immersion" programs that would be analogous to the French immersion schools I mentioned in my previous post.


Generally speaking the results in terms of English proficiency are hit and miss, though in my experience clearly better in regions where you have a decent-sized anglo minority or proximity to Ontario or the U.S. like Montreal and Gatineau.


My kids have been in these classes (I live in Gatineau right across the river from Ottawa, Ontario) and there was a great disparity in proficiency elementary between kids who were sitting right next to each other. One that I could not entirely explain simply by pointing to the parents' proficiency in English either.


Now that we are in a private high school the English classes like all other subjects are more demanding and advanced, but even so there is still a disparity between kids who take the same courses. My kids still have friends who struggle ordering fast food in English in Ottawa.
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Old Yesterday, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Corona del Mar & Coronado, CA
1,693 posts, read 1,171,247 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
French and German are essentially useless languages unless the intent is to live or work in those countries or study their literature and culture to a high level. No student in the US should be allowed to graduate without basic competence in Spanish. International business languages should be offered by middle school.
German IS an international business language, but the #1 international business language is English. No student in the US should be allowed to graduate without basic competence in English, but that is allowed in California. There is ZERO reason for Americans to have basic competence in Spanish. Spanish speaking immigrants should learn English as quickly as possible and "the system" needs to stop enabling Spanish speaking immigrants to avoid doing so.
Quote:
Originally Posted by llowllevellowll View Post
Where in the Bay Area do you live that you feel that isolated from other languages? I don't speak Spanish tremendously well but I use it quite frequently here
That's because you live in San Jose.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
We had Spanish in early elementary school in the 1960s. I don't recall it as being very... meaningful.
I too recall Spanish being taught in elementary schools in So Cal in the 1960's.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettafish View Post
Sometimes I wonder what American kids do in school. Math and foreign language are the most challenging subjects in school, but American kids skip both more or less.
The United States is probably the only country in the world of its size and population where you DON'T need to learn a foreign language as there is one common language over almost 3 million square miles of land.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodHombre View Post
I visited the Hispanic neighborhoods in Miami last month, most Spanish speakers there made great efforts to learn English. I guess they arrived the US as adults, that's why not many spoke coherent English. But the Hispanics in Miami always greeted me in English, not Spanish. As a matter of fact, Spanish speakers in the U.S are trying hard to learn English because they want to be productive members of the society.
I can't speak to the situation in Miami as I don't spend enough time there. I can speak to Southern California where activist Spanish speakers got the State of California to suspend its requirement for proficiency in English as a requirement for graduation. There is an entire segment of Spanish speakers in CA that would like to NEVER use English for anything and the state bends over backwards to accommodate them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by River City Rocky View Post
It was only a matter of time...
A matter of time until what?
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Old Yesterday, 11:30 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
21,098 posts, read 26,271,847 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by citizensadvocate View Post

Though as you mentioned USA kids, I would like to ask is it the same thing about kids in Canada including those who live in or around Toronto and Vancouver metro areas where there are alot of neighborhoods and enclaves that have large amounts of foreign languages spoken at home or used in business? I know that Vancouver, Burnaby, and Richmond BC has a lot of Asian and Chinese businesses.
I don't think there is a significant difference linguistically between these places in Canada and places in the U.S. where a large share of the population is of a single immigrant origin.


If anything the penetration of Chinese languages in community life is almost certainly lower in places like Markham, Ont. or Richmond, BC than the penetration of Spanish in American communities that are predominantly Hispanic.
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Old Yesterday, 11:56 AM
 
1,007 posts, read 498,432 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sas318 View Post
But there are some good teachers who force their students to speak it in class by getting into groups or forcing them to have a conversation with a native speaker. You just have to be lucky to get one of those teachers.

I cannot believe foreign language is still luck of the draw on teachers.
This tells me we're still wasting boat loads of tax $$.
I became fluent in Spanish in less than 90 days, being forced to speak it.
Last century, my 4 years of HS Spanish did nothing to accomplish this.
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Old Yesterday, 12:20 PM
 
572 posts, read 352,605 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodHombre View Post
It's all relative, starting in high school is better than nothing. I want my kids to learn Spanish and Chinese as early as possible. Small kids learn languages effortlessly.

Unlike English, Spanish grammar is very complicated, at some point learners will have to confront the conjugations.
Spanish grammar is complicated? Guess it is all relative, but Russian is way harder. Spanish is a rather easy language to learn imo.
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