After School Programs
Learning doesn't end at the school bell. Dive into language with an after school program conducted entirely in Spanish.
Why After School?
Except for a few dual immersion bilingual schools in Urbana and Champaign, foreign language education in our community generally starts in Middle School. While achieving high levels of proficiency in another language takes several years, research shows that the earlier in life a person starts learning a second language the higher the level of fluency and accuracy achieved.
We wanted to create a unique and valuable educational opportunity, providing language and culture education tailored to school-age children. Our second language education programs promote social equality and cultural understanding, two pillars of the strategic vision of the University of Illinois.
We offer age-appropriate Spanish classes based on current research on how children grow, develop, and learn throughout the school-age period. The program for pre-K through 5 follows the University Primary School calendar and meets Monday – Thursday for a 55-minute class. Classes are kept small, between 8 to 16 children, depending on the number of students per class and Spanish-speaking teacher aides/volunteers to assist. Children receive a certificate of completion during our end of the year celebration.
To ensure the strongest learning environment, we assess our students’ progress on a regular basis. Ongoing assessments evaluate how children adjust to the curriculum and the pace of our lessons. Our methods are matched to the age and experience of the children, and parents are kept informed of their children’s progress in the comprehension and production of language.
Parents choose between the 3:15 or 4:20 class option. Class levels are further organized into one or two classes per time period by the end of the first week of classes. The groups are based on the number of students enrolled, the children’s ages, and their previous knowledge of the language.