Through PE, students are learning the “language” of physical movement, exploring the
skills associated with different strands of PE. They learn to understand what they can
and cannot do physically and become aware of their own strengths and weaknesses in
this discipline. Physical activity is an essential aspect of a well-balanced, healthy lifestyle
and learning through PE helps to build self-esteem, confidence, cooperation and fitness.
Wherever possible and appropriate, links are made with the school’s program of inquiry.
All students from Kindergarten 2 to Grade 5 have three periods of PE per week.
The PYP requires that children study an additional language during their years in
elementary school. The PYP seeks to enable children to function as international citizens
which, in part, entails the ability to function capably and comfortably within and between
cultures. Developing the capacity to speak more than one language is an integral part of
The PYP acknowledges the immediate and far-reaching benefits associated with learning
additional languages. Not only does an individual enjoy cognitive, personal and social
gains by acquiring another language, but it provides a competitive advantage for
successful participation in a highly globalized society. Language is a key factor in the
development of international understanding and, as such, has a major role at Stamford.
Stamford recognizes that the study of languages is a foundation for all learning. Our
school-wide Language Policy states that language study, including English, Modern
Languages and Mother Tongue Languages, develops understanding, reinforces cultural
identity, enhances personal growth and promotes effective communication.
The Modern Language Program encourages students to develop an interest and
appreciation of other languages and cultures while also offering the opportunity to
develop a useable command of English, Mandarin or Spanish. Students work in a positive,
encouraging environment to become responsible communicators, engaged in authentic
and meaningful learning situations. Skills of listening, speaking and visual communication
are strongly emphasized, as well as the reading and writing skills included in the upper
Students have daily lessons in Mandarin, Spanish or EAL (English as an Additional
Language). Each lesson is approximately 40 minutes long. Language learning
instruction focuses on real communication and this focus defines proficiency in an
The components of competence that learners must possess if they are to be capable of
using language for real communication include:
Linguistic Structural Competence
– Knowledge of vocabulary, sound and language
structures through a wide variety of multi-sensorial activities. New vocabulary and
language structures are presented in a meaningful context. Students see clearly how
the language is relevant to their lives, thus increasing motivation and learning.
– Knowledge of how to use language appropriately in
different contexts. Students acquire developmentally appropriate cultural knowledge
for use in authentic situations, such as in correspondence with pen pals and on school
– Linking elements of language together to take part in
discourse, for example, conversation, role plays, creative dramatic skits or short oral
– Knowledge of appropriate strategies in learning the new
– Appreciation of language and culture (includes sensitivity
towards attitudes, norms and cultures in which other languages are spoken).
The Modern Language department provides a positive experience in the learning of an
additional language and aims to develop the attributes of empathy, open-mindedness
Course Descriptions: Lower Elementary to Upper Elementary Program
- Kindergarten 2 to Grade 5 continued