Spanish Lessons Teach More Than Language

Students recently read “All The Colors We Are” By Katie Kissinger in Spanish class. The bilingual book is full of science concepts and vocabulary such as colors, family vocabulary, and body vocabulary including the word for our skin pigment: melanin, “melanina.”  The kids enjoyed naming their skin tone with a  creative “paint swatch” style name as well as thinking about who they may have gotten their hair, eye, and skin color from or where their ancestors may have lived.

Students in fifth and sixth grades have been practicing their reading comprehension in Spanish as they gather facts about Spanish-speaking public figures. Students studied female Supreme Court Judges in Panama to authors, historians, musicians, and athletes. Students commented that seeing a whole text in Spanish about someone they are studying can be intimidating, but that they walked away understanding what the story was about, and they understood more than they thought they would.