The Provo City School District and Board of Education gladly awarded five Provo Way awards in the...
By looking at the way each dual enrollment teacher engages their students, you would never realize they were speaking a different language. This is what makes the dual language immersion program so special.
When the program first started, many parents weren’t sure if the course would be too intense, or if the results would be worth it. Doubt over the effectiveness of the program has since been replaced by certainty.
In his sixth grade glass, Rudolpho DeAndrade teaches the children lessons on Portugese grammar. After he asks a question, students quickly volunteer themselves to see if they can score one of the colorful bills that he is handing out for spot-on answers.
One student in the back confidently rattles off a few sentences in the language. DeAndrade forks over a blue bill, which the child places into a his impressively thick money clip fashioned out of a black binder clip.
Across the building in a first grade classroom, Roberta Loftus teaches her group of first graders about basic numbers and counting. Her lesson isn’t focused on how to count to ten in Portugese, but rather, how to calculate basic mathematics. You might expect there to be some leeway with the language (given that they are first graders in their first year of learning) but that is not the case! Portuguese is the only language spoken and each child is able to understand clearly the task at hand.
It is easy to wonder if learning the new language will hinder the children’s education during the most important time for them to learn, but after you see the positive results, you’ll wonder how you can get your child involved! If you are interested and want to get your child started below are a few steps to help you.
Is this program right for my first grader?
During a child’s developmental age, their ability to pick up and learn new languages is at its peak. The dual language immersion program takes full advantage of a child’s ability. Children enrolled in the program spend half the day in an english speaking classroom and the other half of the day in a foreign language classroom.
The teacher speaks exclusively in either Spanish, Portugese, French, or Chinese (depending on which program your child is enrolled in). The educators are trained and certified teachers (as well as native-level speakers). The children also speak to each other in their foreign language. Throughout their term, you’ll be amazed to see how their minds and vocabulary expand.
I have a special circumstance, and I would like to insert my child who is beyond first grade into the program. What should I do?
The dual enrollment program is intended to be something that the applicants participate in from first grade. Any applicant who wasn’t in the program from the beginning needs to be seriously considered. If you questions, a representative from the school and the program will likely sit down with you and your child and talk about it to see if it is right for you.
Common reasons to enroll a child in the program after first grade include:
- children who are from a home or environment that speaks the language natively
- children who transferred from a school outside of the district or state and were in a DLI program in their previous school
The application process through the website is specifically for parents with kindergarten age students. If you have a student who is in a different grade, you will be unable to apply through the Dual Immersion Enrollment Application. Instead, you will go through the Open Enrollment Application process. When filling out the Open Enrollment Application, mention that you are applying for the Dual Immersion Program and give a brief explanation of why you think that it is a good fit for your student. These exceptions are handled on a case-by-case basis.
Which Language should I enroll my child in?
As the deadline approaches for early priority enrollment, each program is quickly filling up! When you choose to enroll your soon-to-be first grader, the application will have you choose your preferred class (alongside secondary choices.) At the moment, the Lakeview Portugese program and the Wasatch Mandarin Chinese program have the most available space! Whichever program your child gets approved for, be assured that they will be able to adapt and pick it up quickly.
When is the deadline for enrollment?
Early enrollment ends on February 21st at midnight. After this, you are still able to enroll your child, but the odds of them being accepted into the program are much lower. In order to have the best chance of making it in, make sure to fill out the forms before then!
No matter which program your child ends up in, they will learn and excel in the hands of the incredible teachers and schools that the Provo Dual Language Immersion has to offer. We’re excited to have them involved in the coming years!