World Language

  • Overview

    Courses at Wilson place a greater emphasis on spontaneous speaking and writing in the target language in real-life situations.

    • French 1-2
    • French 3-4
    • French 5-6
    • French 7-8
    • French Film
    • German 1-2
    • German 3-4
    • German 5-6
    • German 7-8
    • Mandarin  1-2
    • Mandarin 3-4
    • Mandarin 5-6
    • Spanish for Spanish Speakers
    • Spanish 1-2
    • Spanish 3-4
    • Spanish 5-6
    • Spanish 7-8
    • Spanish 11-12
    • AP Spanish Language
    • American Sign Language 1-2
    • American Sign Language 3-4
    • Hebrew 1-2

     

    Foreign Study Programs

    A number of foreign exchange programs are available to Wilson students. Student exchanges vary from two weeks to ten months, and take place during either the summer or the school year. In most programs, the student can choose the country to which he or she wants to travel.  Some programs involve staying with a host family while studying in one country, or traveling to several different countries. The World language teachers can provide information and details about the various exchange programs to interested Wilson students and their families. In order to fulfill required courses, students hoping to enroll in and attend school full-time in another country should plan one year in advance for this eventuality. Elective courses may be arranged upon arrival in the host country.

  • Courses

    Courses at Wilson place greater emphasis on spontaneous speaking and writing in the target language in real–life situations.

    We encourage students to enroll in the language of their choice. The workload and the level of difficulty among the languages are comparable. The World Language Department requires students to earn grades of “A”, “B” or “C” in order to continue on to the next level. Any student receiving a “D” will be given credit for the class, but will not be allowed to continue on to the next level. In order to continue on to the next level, students earning a “D” or an “F” will have to repeat the class in summer school, night school, or at some other off– campus location. Students will only be allowed to repeat a class on campus if space is available.

    College Entrance Requirements: all public Oregon universities require two years of the same World Language (C or better). PPS requires two years of the same world language for a standard diploma.

    French

    French 1-2 Year 9-12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    This introductory course is designed for students with little or no previous study of French. A focus on comprehensible input and contextualized repetition will enable students to begin acquiring French. Cultures of the French-speaking world are introduced via media, songs, games, adapted readings, and class discussions. Students will demonstrate their proficiency in all four modes of communication: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. The course is taught primarily in French.

    French 3-4 Year 9-12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or higher in French 1-2. 1 unit, 1 period
    This course enables students to continue developing proficiency in all four modes of communication: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. Students will continue to explore the cultures of the French-speaking world through media, songs, games, adapted readings, and class discussions. Students will demonstrate their proficiency in all four modes of communication: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. The course is taught primarily in French.

    French 5-6 Year 10-12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in French 3-4. (Highly recommended: a grade of “B” or higher). 1 unit, 1 period
    In this course, students will continue to develop proficiency in French. Students will build toward communication at a more sophisticated level. This course introduces francophone (French language) literature through poetry, magazine articles, and short stories, and excerpts from novels such as Le petit prince. Students will demonstrate their proficiency in all four modes of communication: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. This course is taught primarily in French, and students are expected to speak French in class.

    French 7-8 Year 10-12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or higher in French 5-6. (Highly recommended: a grade of “B” or higher). 1 unit, 1 period
    Students will continue to develop their proficiency at a more sophisticated level through a study of francophone (French language) poetry, art, magazine articles, short stories, plays, and novel excerpts. They will develop skills necessary to communicate through written
    papers and class discussions. Advanced grammar topics are taught in the context of reading and discussions. This course is taught primarily in French and students are expected to speak only French.

    French Film: An elective class for anyone Year 9-12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    Students in this course will watch films in French from various countries of the Francophone world and analyze them through multiple lenses including culture, geography, history, equity, genre, and literature. They will collaborate with teachers/classes from outside the World Languages department, including English, Social Studies, Art, and Video Production. This course will be suitable for both students who know some French and those who do not. Native and heritage speakers and advanced French students will have the opportunity to use and improve their language skills. Students with no French background will participate and complete written assignments in English. Most of the films will be shown in French with English subtitles. Class discussions will be held in English although small group discussions may be in French or English. Students may complete written assignments in English or French. Many films will be pre-selected by the instructor, but students may propose films. This course is for elective credit only.

    German

    German 1-2 Year 9-12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    Students will learn practical vocabulary and basic sentence structures related to school, family, leisure activities, and food through interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational modes of communication. German family life, customs, and history will be presented through information found in the textbook, videos, music, and other authentic materials. The course goal is for the students to attain a novice high level of proficiency in all the areas of communication by the end of the school year.

    German 3-4 Year 10-12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in German 1-2. 1 unit, 1 period
    Students consolidate the learning of first-year material and continue to expand their knowledge of German vocabulary and grammatical structures, gaining ease in both oral and written expression. The text and most of the supplementary materials continue to emphasize daily life here and in German-speaking countries. The course goal is for the students to attain at least an intermediate low level of proficiency in all the areas of communication by the end of the school year.

    German 5-6 Year 10 - 12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in second-year German. (Highly recommended: a grade of “B” or better.) 1 unit, 1 period
    German grammar is studied in depth on both the oral and written level along with vocabulary expansion and further development of communication skills. At this level, the class is conducted almost exclusively in German. German culture is given greater emphasis at this level, and literature is introduced through poetry and short stories.

    German 7-8 Honors Year 11 -12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in third-year German. (Highly recommended: a grade of “B” or better.) 1 unit, 1 period
    Reading materials include short stories, young adult literature, and poetry. Compositions and discussions are based on the readings and on various topics of interest to the students. Grammar topics are expanded upon and reviewed as needed. Films and music videos provide variety and cultural information. The emphasis in the class is on communicating in German.

    Mandarin Chinese

    Mandarin 1-2 Year 9-12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    This class is the first level of a four-year sequence designed to develop language skills in Mandarin Chinese. We emphasize speaking, reading and writing comprehension. Simple questions, commands and statements are taught. Students will use the English alphabet to write “Pinyin” which represents Mandarin sounds. They will learn to type “Pinyin” on the keyboard to retrieve the Simplify Chinese Characters from a computer.
    Mandarin 3-4 Year 10-12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in Mandarin 1-2. 1 unit, 1 period This second level course continues to develop skills acquired in first level course. Students engage in conversations, reading and writing characters that students have learned, provide and obtain information, express feelings and emotions, likes and dislikes, personal preferences and abilities. They demonstrate an understanding of the practices and perspectives of the Chinese language and culture studied.

    Mandarin 5-6 Year 9-12 Prerequisite: Mandarin 3-4 with a B or higher
    Mandarin 5-6 students will be able to present simple sentences and some strings of sentences. Topics studied will include; Nationality, City/Town/Community, Stores/Shopping, Schedules, Daily routine, Geography, Social Activities Interests, and Transportation. In a conversation students will be able to survival in simple, real-life situations, (e.g., asking for directions, ordering a meal, making purchases in a store/post office, visiting with family & friends). Speech is usually characterized by pronunciation inaccuracies and interference from the native language; however, accuracy in pronunciation and intonation is demonstrated when presenting well-rehearsed material on familiar topics. Students will be able to write messages, short letters, simple descriptions and simple narrations using a series of simple sentences about self & describe aspects of everyday life.

    Spanish

    Spanish for Spanish Speakers Year 9-12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    This course is designed for students who speak Spanish at home and/or have a cultural connection to the language. This course takes into account the experiences and influences of a student's bilingual and bi-cultural upbringing. The primary purpose of the course is to develop reading and writing skills in Spanish, although all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) are practiced via cultural and community activities. Students who successfully complete this course may choose to enroll in AP Spanish.

    Spanish 1–2 Year 9 – 12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    This introductory course is designed for students with little or no previous study of Spanish. Some students in class might have studied Spanish in middle school, but have not grasped some of the important structures of the language. This course teaches basic language patterns and vocabulary with an emphasis on developing accurate pronunciation. Repetition and comprehensible input are important components of this course. The focus is on all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students will be assessed in each of these four modes of communication. Cultures of the Spanish speaking world are introduced through the use of media, songs, games, films, adapted readings and class discussions. The course is taught primarily in Spanish.

    Spanish 3–4 Year 9 – 12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in Spanish 1–2. 1 unit, 1 period.
    As students continue to learn vocabulary and sentence structure, they consolidate their understanding of the first-year material.
    Communication takes a more realistic form as students integrate language taught in class. Students will learn about customs, history and geography of Spanish–speaking countries through the use of the textbook, videos, games, music, magazines, and other authentic materials.

    Spanish 5–6 Year 10 – 12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in Spanish 3–4. (Highly recommended: a grade of “B” or better.) 1 unit, 1 period
    The study of grammatical structures taught in context continues along with vocabulary expansion in this course. Students build toward communication at a more sophisticated level using stimulating and engaging activities, which include dramatizations, cultural projects, guest speakers, and oral proficiency interviews. Students are expected to speak only Spanish in this class and this course is taught primarily in Spanish.

    Spanish 7–8 Year 11 – 12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in Spanish 5–6. 1 unit, 1 period
    Literature, poetry and films will be used as a point of departure to enhance and expand communication at a more challenging level. Advanced grammar topics are taught in the context of reading and discussions. Writing, an integral part of the course, includes reports, essays and correspondence. This course is taught primarily in Spanish and students are required to speak only Spanish.

    AP Spanish Language Year 11 – 12 Prerequisite: a grade of “C” or better in Spanish 7–8 but an “A” or “B” in fourth–year Spanish is highly recommended, or have teacher permission. 1 unit, 1 period
    This advanced level of Spanish prepares students for the Advanced Placement Exam in Spanish and upper-level college courses. The skills students have developed throughout the previous four years will define the course; it will be structured to meet student needs and will included Spanish AP exam–related activities and a rigorous preparation for the test in May as well as the study of advanced structures and vocabulary. Novels, plays, short stories, poetry and film will be used to increase vocabulary and performance in reading comprehension and students’ writing skills. Texts will be studied through a cultural and socio–political lens. This course is taught entirely in Spanish and students are required to speak only Spanish.

    Spanish 11-12 Year 11-12 Prerequisite: Spanish 9-10 1 unit, 1 period
    Spanish 11-12 emphasizes authentic communication in Spanish related to the various Latin-American literature and other texts which will be read throughout the year. As the students read and study the diverse reading materials, they will be assessed in oral proficiencies: the poem, the song, the debate, the role-play, the speech and the interview as well as written proficiencies: the essay, the formal letter, the informal letter, the interview, the report, the news report, the advertisement, and the review (movie critic). The goal is to be able to convey meaningful messages following the appropriate norms of spoken language, including a sense of registers, settings, and adequate vocabulary. The expanded reading of diverse Latin-American literature provides students to the formal literary study that approximates to a course typically taught at the third-year college level. Students will read significant genres and literary periods: Pre-Hispanic, Colonialism, Renaissance & Baroque, Neoclassicism, Romanticism, Realism, Modernism, Post-modernism, Vanguard, Magical Realism, Dadaism, Surrealism, Ultraism, Existentialism and Creationism. The principal objective of this course is to gain an understanding of the people of Latin America today and to develop a sense of solidarity with the hopes, dreams and struggles of the people in Latin America and Latin Americans in the United States.

    American Sign Language

    American Sign Language 1–2 Year 9 – 12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period.
    American Sign Language (ASL) 1-2 is for students with no prior or minimal skills and knowledge of ASL. It includes the study of the history, structure, and grammar of ASL. ASL 1-2 also encompasses the study of the historical and cultural contexts of the Deaf community. ASL is a visual, spatial, gestural language that utilizes space and movement to convey meaning. You will develop communication skills of which you are not accustomed to: using hands, face, body, eyes, and space. In order to progress, it is important that you become comfortable using body language and “listening” with your eyes. To encourage and foster the development of ASL, spoken language (talking) will not be used during class.

    American Sign Language (ASL) 3–4 Year 10 – 12 Prerequisite: “C” or higher in ASL 1–2 or teacher permission 1 unit, 1 period
    This intermediate course is designed to build on what the students learned in ASL 1–2. Students will have the opportunity to communicate in a wider array of situations, to further develop their language fluency and to advance their level of comprehension of American Sign Language in culturally appropriate ways. This language immersion experience course will focus on vocabulary, grammar, and a further understanding of the Deaf culture and the Deaf community. Students will need to be active participants in the learning process and will be encouraged to take risks in their language development, make mistakes, infer meaning, and become self–driven learners.

    Hebrew 1–2 Year 9 – 12 Prerequisite: None 1 unit, 1 period
    This introductory course is designed for students with little or no previous study of Hebrew. Some students in class might have studied Hebrew previously, but have not grasped some of the important structures of the language. This course teaches basic language patterns and vocabulary with an emphasis on developing accurate pronunciation. Repetition and comprehensible input are important components of this course. The focus is on all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students will be assessed in each of these four modes of communication. Cultures of the Hebrew speaking world are introduced through the use of media, songs, games, films, adapted readings and class discussions. The course is taught primarily in Hebrew.