Growing number of students face the challenge of a new language

Published: Monday, November 12, 2012 at 12:07 PM.

More advanced students test their wings differently. On a recent Thursday, a group of six girls spent the class writing six different stories together. Each would write a sentence on a paper and then pass it on.

When one struggled with a word, Francis or one of the other students stepped in to help.

Once finished, they took turns reading the stories aloud amid laughter.

“It’s a safe environment where they know they can say something whether or not they say it correctly,” Francis said.

In Diaz de Varela’s classroom, students can work on computers using language learning programs such as Rosetta Stone and other electronic resources.

She isn’t fluent in all the languages her students speak, but she makes an effort to learn at least a few words in each to assist them as much as she can.

“I wish I could go to (all their) classes and help them out,” she said with smile.

Future of the program



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