American School of Paris - Language Learning

Language Learning

Our aim in the Language Learning program is that students leave ASP with a love of languages, people and cultures and with tools to communicate efficiently and meaningfully. We value the learning of additional languages and the development of mother tongue languages. Proficiency in additional languages aids the student in acquiring competencies in other curricular areas.

Our Philosophy

We believe that language learning:

  • is a unique lifelong process requiring specific skills, commitment, exposure and interaction.
  • promotes global citizenship and multicultural understanding.
  • occurs most successfully when students are grouped by proficiency levels
  • fosters a sense of belonging to the local community and taking advantage of living in France to fully experience and appreciate its richness in art, history, science and culture.
  • promotes an interdisciplinary view of the curriculum, and encourages student to view content from the perspective/view point of other cultures.
  • is most effective through daily exposure to instruction in the classroom and immersion in the target-language, culture and community.

Our program is designed to achieve the following goals:

Cultures

  • Students will understand that culture and language are inseparable; they influence and reflect on each other.
  • Students will understand that the concept of culture embraces all aspects of the life of the people (such as the arts, literature, history, linguistics, society and politics).
  • Students will understand, appreciate and respect studied cultures (French and Spanish) as well as other cultures and civilizations.

Communication

  • Students will develop strategies and skills to communicate meaningfully, accurately and creatively .
  • Students will increase their communicative confidence and risk taking in using the language with native speakers.
  • Students will continually improve their proficiency levels of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Connections

  • Students will apply their language skills and cultural knowledge to participate more fully in a multilingual community.
  • Students will use their language proficiency to enrich their experience within the local community as life-long learners and to become global citizens.

Comparisons

  • Students will be able to compare and contrast their mother tongue and culture to the target language and culture.
  • Students will gain an understanding of the linguistic patterns within and between languages and will be able to affirm their own identity.

Communities

  • Students will apply their language skills and cultural knowledge to participate more fully in a multilingual community.
  • Students will use their language proficiency to enrich their experience within the local community as life-long learners and to become global citizens.

French Language Learning at ASP

ASP has implemented a Two Track Approach to language learning featuring a new course structure, clearly defined proficiencies for each course level, and course names corresponding to the set proficiency level based on the American Council on The Teaching of Foreign Languages.

This unified Grade PK-12 approach provides language-learning alignment across all three school divisions.

How does it work? The table below illustrates the structure of the two-track approach.

American School of New York

Highlights

  • The system is proficiency-based, with clear expectations set for each level.
  • Using proficiency placement tests to assess the best fit, students are identified at what level they should be learning French either in the “Heritage French” track or “French as an Additional Language” track.
  • If a student is assessed as proficient, he/she moves to the next proficiency level.
  • Students will continue to be challenged as they move from one proficiency level to the next.
  • “French as an Additional Language” students may cross-over to “Heritage French” if their performance warrants this.

For a close up look at ASP's language learning in the early years, please refer to "French in the Lower School"