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Why Study Spanish?

Why Study Spanish?

“To have another language is to possess a second soul.” – Charlemagne

This quotation from Charlemagne is timeless. We have always heard that it is beneficial to learn another language, but do we really believe it? Well, I do.

My Visit to Spain

As a cautious high school student, I boarded my first plane flight to Spain with a group of strangers. Armed only with three years of poorly learned high school Spanish I ventured headlong into a homestay with a wonderfully patient family. Later in my junior year of college, I lived in Córdoba, Spain for an academic year taking classes in Spanish and living life in a Spanish dorm. I quickly had to learn to navigate in my new world.

My Second Soul

So this brings me to my second soul. That summer after my junior year in Spain I was invited by my brother to be a translator on a mission trip to Mexico. I however was not a believer. I was very far from God. A dear friend suddenly died while I was in Spain and the heartbreak of losing him so young shocked me to my core. “What could I say of myself if I passed suddenly as he did?” The big questions of eternity loomed in my heart and my head.

While in Mexico I was paired up with a pastor’s wife and we did door-to-door evangelism together. She used her parallel Bible and I would read and explain concepts in Spanish. It was during that trip after many late-night talks that I surrendered myself to Jesus. I gained my second soul through Spanish.

Why Choose Spanish?

Aside from the beauty of the language and the connections you will make as you study it, Spanish is the language of over 450 million people in the world! By learning Spanish you will be able to understand your native English more. And you will be humbled by how much you do not know about your own language!

I hope you will be able to join me (Emily Harkey) and my students this year in our journey into Spanish with True North Homeschool Academy, or with another curriculum or class – it is truly through the struggles and joys of learning another language that you are able to “possess a second soul”.

More About Emily & Her Spanish Classes

Currently, Emily Harkey teaches Spanish A, Spanish B and section two of our Spanish Level One classes. We are thankful for her expertise. She really immerses the students in the language and culture and she loves the benefits of the interaction students get in her online classes. Hear more from her about her philosophy and teaching styles in the video below:

 

 

Thank you, Emily, for sharing from your heart! If you want to learn more about why your child might want to learn Spanish, check out our blog post 5 Reasons to Study Spanish!

Spanish Curriculum Giveaway!

Enter from May 21 – June 4, 2021: True North Homeschool Academy is giving away Spanish curriculum. Enter for a chance to win our self-paced elementary level Spanish curricula from Risas y SonRisas or Level One (used for Spanish 1) or Level Two (used for Spanish II) of the Spanish curriculum, Breaking the Spanish Barrier. It’s an exciting opportunity and one we hope you will ENTER TO WIN! True North offers Spanish classes for your elementary students as well as Spanish for middle school (junior high) and high school Spanish levels 1-3.

 

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Why Learn German?

Why Learn German?

Why should your child study German? Honestly, the best reason of all is simply because they want to. Whether the interest comes from family heritage, an interest in history, or just that it sounds “cool,” that internal drive is what motivates students to move beyond requirements to any level of mastery.

Benefits of Learning The German Language

Most of the benefits provided by learning German are common to learning any foreign language:

  • It satisfies college requirements.
  • It increases a student’s understanding of English.
  • It increases a student’s ability to recognize context clues.
  • It increases cultural understanding, both of their native culture and the culture of the target language.
  • It broadens perspectives and shows new ways of looking at the world.

German has the added advantage of being delightfully literal.

 

A Good Teacher Makes Language Learning Less Intimidating

I took German in high school because Russian wasn’t offered. I had never really thought much about language before that. Spanish made more sense, or so everyone told me, but I did not enjoy my eighth-grade introduction to Spanish. Fortunately, I had two excellent German teachers whose teaching styles perfectly matched my preferred learning style.

The first was Ms. Glendening. She opened the doors of wonder for me and a whole new world of language. When I wasn’t able to afford to go on the class trip to Germany, she was visibly disappointed. She then searched for a scholarship opportunity that paid for a year of study abroad. My second teacher was living in Germany.

As a teacher, I try to emulate the best characteristics of both: immersive, meaningful, playful, and encouraging.

Beautiful postcard view of the famous historic town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber on a sunny day with blue sky and clouds in summer, Franconia, Bavaria, Germany

Parts of German grammar can be intimidating. There is no getting around gender or case or adjective endings. How tedious this is for students has a lot to do with how it is taught, however. One of the clearest methods I know is a simple sentence-building activity that visually demonstrates how German sentences are put together. I turned it into a sort of simple choose-your-own-adventure type game. This grammar drill ended up the most requested game for our end-of-year party.

If a student develops a passion for German that brings them beyond college requirements, there are, of course, other benefits.

  • German is the dominant language of the EU, with more native language speakers than any other European language. It is the second most spoken second language (behind English).
  • Germany has the largest GDP of EU member countries.
  • Germany directly invests over $10 billion into the US economy. Several German companies have satellite offices in the US.
  • It is the language of Goethe, Schiller, Kafka, Brecht, Beethoven, Mozart, and many others.
  • German immigration has greatly influenced American culture.
  • Many of the world’s most significant works in science, theology, psychology, history, and literature are written in German.
  • Plus, binge-watching your favorite television series sounds like more of an accomplishment in German!

Join us this fall on the wonderful adventure of learning German! German I, German II, and National German Exam Test Prep are all available and taught by Dana Hanley.

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Project & Presentation Samples

These are examples of some of the projects complete by students in our online German classes.

Brochures:

Video Presentations:

Typical Course of Study: High School

Typical Course of Study: High School

As the world of Homeschooling has expanded and options have increased and become more focused, it’s a great time to be homeschooling. Frankly, the options for High School Homeschooling are better than ever! As the world of homeschooling has expanded and the unknowns of the next school year loom, parents of high schoolers are wondering how to plan for what’s ahead. A basic understanding of a typical course of study can be a simple and helpful guide to planning the future, even when that future seems uncertain!

You should focus on the Core 4 subjects for high school and then add in electives and extra-curriculars. Some of this will depend on what type of transcript you are creating and where your students plan to land after high school. Vocational programs, college or university, ivy league or conservatory, or the Military all warrant focusing on different aspects of your student’s learning program.

I will link to classes that we offer here at True North Homeschool Academy since we try to create our classes with a typical course of study plan in mind for each age group. Still, you should choose the curriculum or classes that work the best for your family. It’s always awesome if you decide that means our online classes, but we want this blog article to help you make an amazing transcript for your high schooler even if TNHA classes don’t fit your plan.

Typical Course of Study: High School

Let’s start by looking at high school as a four-year program. This will give us a long view approach and help us determine what classes make sense within our subject areas. I’ll list each subject and then a common 4-year course of study. You are going to want to focus on the Core Four and go from there:

 

English– 9th-grade Literature & Composition, World Lit & Comp, U.S. Lit & Composition, British Lit, and Composition

(English can also include spelling, vocabulary, short story, novel writing, Speech and Rhetoric, Poetry,  etc.).

Math – Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, Pre-Trigonometry, Pre-Calculus, Personal Finance

SciencePhysical Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Anatomy & Physiology or other advanced Science

History World Geography, World History, U.S. History, Government & Economics

(History can also include other areas or times of History like Ancient History)

Once you have these planned, it will be so much easier to fill in with electives and extracurricular activities.

 

Typical Course of Study: High School – Electives and Extra-curriculars

Father and son timeForeign Language– this can be any Ancient or Modern Language. Keep in mind that Latin is a fantastic foundation for grammar and learning how to learn a Foreign Language, and Critical Languages are a great way to earn Scholarship Dollars; French, German, Spanish, Hebrew, Chinese, Latin

Physical Education – ½ credit each year. Check out our amazing Dance at the Movies for a fun credit of P.E!

Music – a general overview of music, including Music Theory, Voice, Songwriting, or instrument lessons count as well. Check out our Music at the Movies for a fascinating look at the power of music in culture!

Art/Humanities – a general understanding of Form and Color, Photography, Photoshop, etc.

Bible/Apologetics Studies – should include a general overview of the Old and New Testament, Church History, and Apologetics. It used to be expected that every educated person had a general understanding of the Bible and could easily reference books and passages. Take time to read and discuss the Bible together and memorize Scripture. Awanas and the Bible Bee are excellent programs to commit the Bible to memory.

Basic Computer Information Systems – Powerpoint, Video Editing, Internet Safety, and Accountability.

Health – should include general health information, introduction to addictions, cybersecurity and addictions, ages and stages, reproductive health.

Vocational & Career Interests including Entrepreneurship – in today’s quickly changing market and the gig economy that they will inevitably be a part of, it’s important for your students to explore Vocational and Career Options as Life Skills and Personal Finance.

Typical Course of Study electives can vary and be wildly diverse. Think about student’s areas of interest, as well as what’s available to them. Many students delve deeply into a subject area that really piques their interest, like art, drama, music, electronics, etc. And don’t forget to provide a robust reading list for your high school students, which should include short stories, novels, plays, and poems.

High School is also a time to explore new areas of interest so take some time to seek out and expose your student to activities and unique experiences.

A typical course of study for your high school should also include Community Service– I would recommend 15 hours a year or more. It’s tricky with Covid, but you can always write letters to service men and women, collect coats or food for the local coat drive or food pantry. You might have to get creative, but high schoolers typically are creative.

Please make time to teach your students about internet safety and how to protect themselves from addictions, pornography, and perpetrators. Teach them how to manage social media and how to be accountable. Getting snared in addiction at a young age can have devastating implications for them. I highly recommend Glow Kids for every parent and young adult.

 

Testing Options and More

ACT Test Prep can save you thousands of dollars in Scholarship earned, National Latin Exam looks great on a transcript, and our Performance Series test is a straightforward way to assess where your student is at and helps them gain confidence with standardized tests.

Want to know more about credits, transcripts, and standardized tests to ensure your high school student is getting a typical course of study? Survive Homeschooling High School is a comprehensive eBook that will walk you through how to plan and prepare for high school. If you have a good handle on your high school plan but want help with the logistics of a transcript or assigning credits, you may want to check out our Academic Advising- we offer Academic Advising, SPED Advising for nontraditional learners, and NCAA Advising for those looking to compete for an NCAA position.

It’s a great time to be homeschooling, and the options for High School Homeschooling are better than ever! Check out our live online dynamic, interactive classes taught within an international community by world-class teachers! Students interact and work together- we believe excellent education takes place within a community!

Money Saving Bundles

And, in case you didn’t know, we offer Bundles for terrific savings.

We hope you have found our quick guide to a typical course of study for high school helpful. We invite you to join our Facebook group to let us know and to chat with other homeschool parents about credits, transcripts curriculum, and everything homeschool.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like to read these:

 

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Spanish B – Elementary Level 2

Spanish B – Elementary Level 2

Spanish B – Elementary Level -Section II -4th -8th Grade

Spanish B Elementary Level 2 is an online Spanish class that will give your students (grades 4-7) a clear introduction to Spanish grammar, reading, and dialogue. Upper elementary students will enjoy learning this Romance language through chanting, writing, and engaging conversations.

Students will learn grammatical concepts such as verb conjugations, noun genders, and tenses. Having a great grammatical foundation will allow them to create Spanish sentences properly and give students the confidence to converse with others.

This once-a-week class will cover the last 5 units of the Spanish for Children A text and begin Spanish for Children B second semester. This ensures students will have the time to master the material. Students will meet once a week for 60 minutes.  During this time they will learn the new lesson and practice their vocabulary and dialogue with the teacher and their peers.

The Spanish B course is created with an independent student in mind. Since the class meets once a week students will be required to work independently on memorization, learning chants, and completing the workbook.

(Parents will need to oversee homework as well as administer quizzes.)

Spanish is a critical language, and there are more Spanish speakers in the world than those who speak English.

Curricula and Supplies:

Spanish B will pair perfectly with our Classical Memory Program and Writing and Grammar or as part of an Elementary Bundle, allowing you to choose which classes best suit your students and family’s needs.

Take THIS TEST to see if this class is a good fit.

Why Should Your Homeschooler Study Critical Languages?

Why Should Your Homeschooler Study Critical Languages?

Why should your homeschooler study critical languages?  Critical Language Study is a foreign language study that puts your homeschooler ahead of the pack.

Foreign Language study can be a struggle for even the most dedicated Homeschooler. It’s just hard to teach what you don’t know. Thankfully, there are so many great resources available now for instruction with fluent speakers and teachers, that it’s just a matter of finding a great fit!

So, why not ramp your foreign language studies up a bit by going after a Critical Language?

What is “Critical Language?”

A Critical Language is a term used to designate a language where the demand outstrips the supply. In other words, there is a high need for a language professional in these areas, but we can’t meet the supply.

These languages are essential for reasons of diplomacy, trade, and national security. Because diplomacy, trade and national security fluctuate, the list of Critical Languages fluctuates as well.  The current list for Critical Languages includes 60 languages, which can be found here https://www.nsep.gov/content/critical-languages.

Everyone knows that foreign language study enhances your Educational Opportunities, and contributes to Leadership Potential and Career Readiness.  However, these languages are often overlooked because they may be considered more difficult to learn due to a different alphabet, pronunciation or grammatical structure;  they are not closely related to English, like Spanish, French or German would be.

However, anyone who obtains proficiency in a Critical Language automatically has improved scholarship opportunities as well as improved career prospects, as jobs in government, international companies, non-profit organization or security services are looking for professionals with second language training.

What are the best languages to get ahead with your career?

Mandarin and Spanish are on the list, time and again. In fact, if you know English, Spanish and Chinese, you can communicate with 2/3 of the world’s population, which never fails to look amazing on a resume!

Interested in Career Fields that utilize these languages?

  1. Become a Translator (having to do with the written word)
  2. Become an interpreter- this has to do with the spoken word, (this would be more challenging than translating).
  3. Apply for a foreign language Intelligence Officer
  4. Work as a Foreign Language Teacher
  5. Work as an International Sales Manager
  6. Work in a business/ Customer relations that requires a foreign language
  7. Work in the military as a linguist/ Foreign Service Officer
  8. Work as a Humanitarian/International Development Services Offices
  9. Work as a Foreign Correspondent

Jobs Opportunity Listings for those with a Second Language

Scholarship opportunities available for those with Critical Language Training:

Professional Organizations for Language Study and Specialists

Relevant Websites and Publications

Interested in foreign Language study that will take you further? We offer Spanish K-12th , Chinese,k-12th  Hebrew 8th-adult, and Latin I-IV and German I at True North Homeschool Academy. Classes are taught by exceptional teachers who are either native language speakers are fluent and most are polyglots to boot. Culture studies and inspiration included!

Are you overwhelmed with choosing a foreign language study for your student? Let us simplify it today! Check out some great reasons why your homeschooler should study a critical language. #TNHA #criticallanguage #foreignlanguage