Languages

At Blake, we don't just teach languages — we help students learn a new language and fall in love with it for life. Intensive instruction in Spanish develops Lower School students' world language skills at an early age. In sixth grade, students may continue with Spanish or begin studying French, Latin or Mandarin Chinese. In the Upper School, language skills are complemented by opportunities to travel and connect with other cultures.

We recognize that some students arrive already fluent in another language, and we make every effort to differentiate instruction for these students.

Spanish Every Day: Grades Pre-K Through 5

Learning another language in childhood is the best way to work toward developing language proficiency. The Lower School offers 20 minutes of Spanish twice a week in Pre-K classes and 30 minutes daily for students in kindergarten through grade five. The engaging curriculum includes stories, songs and movement. Students leave the Lower School program with up to six years of formal language instruction. Watch Lower School Spanish video

Extending Language Study: Grades 6 Through 8

Middle Schoolers study the same language from grades six through eight. Some choose to continue learning Spanish. Others use their considerable language-acquisition skills to tackle French, Latin or Mandarin Chinese. Students whose understanding of a language is extremely advanced receive instruction appropriate to their level

Students develop language skills along with intercultural communication skills. Hands-on activities and field trips enrich language learning and celebrations of cultural holidays supplement class instruction and make lessons memorable and fun.

Developing Language Proficiency: Grades 9 Through 12

Advanced study ensures that Upper School students graduate with high language proficiency and appropriate intercultural communication skills. While the minimum graduation requirements are to take language through the end of sophomore year and pass a Level III course, most Upper School students choose to take language through their senior year, so that they can pursue Advanced Placement courses and beyond in Latin, French, Spanish and Chinese.