Detroit Arsenal CDC Teaches Preschool Children How to Speak Spanish
March 23, 2009
- Detroit Arsenal Child Development Center (CDC) Teaches Preschool Children How to Speak Spanish
As time marches on, the world is definitely becoming a much smaller place in which to live. Easy access to air travel, the internet, cell phones, and other technological innovations are creating a worldwide phenomenon of exploding multiculturalism. Barriers that were once thought insurmountable are now being transcended, making real what previously existed only in the imagination.
Parents are facing a dilemma of how best to prepare their children to be productive and good citizens in this new world. One of the most important skills that youngster can have to be competitive in a burgeoning global economy is the ability to be multilingual.
The Child Development Center (CDC) at the U.S. Army Garrison - Detroit Arsenal is being proactive in addressing this need by giving children at the center an opportunity to learn another language, and at the same time get a head start on their futures. The CDC, through their School of Knowledge, Exploration & Skills (SKIES) Programs is partnering with EarlyBirds Learning, offering Spanish classes. Session One began back in January 09, and Session Two is set to begin at the end of March.
The classes are taught using a variety of play based activities, including games, songs, and arts and crafts. Based on experience from teaching thousands of children foreign languages, and through refinement, EarlyBirds Learning has found this method of training to be extremely effective in teaching youngsters foreign language skills.
Classes at the Detroit Arsenal's CDC are taught by native Spanish speaking instructors experienced in successfully teaching young children another language through active, immersion based learning.
According to Rob Kaye, cofounder of EarlyBirds Learning, "early exposure to world languages not only introduces children to another culture and way of thinking, but research shows it also improves English verbal and listening skills, spurs cognitive development and strengthens math and analytical skills."
"We believe it is never too early to begin teaching children another language. By building early world language skills and providing a window into new cultures and traditions, we help children embrace a world where borders are becoming more blurred," Kaye said.
Nancy Mitchell, Child, Youth and School Services (CYSS) Coordinator at the Detroit Arsenal, is thrilled at being able to offer children the opportunity to learn Spanish. "With the growth of multiculturalism in the United States and across the world, it's important to prepare kids to be productive in this kind of environment. To teach kids another language at such an early age can do nothing but benefit them and their futures. I just wish I had this opportunity when I was their age," Mitchell said.
CYSS Assistant Outreach Director Jamie Palmer seconded Mitchell's thoughts. "Both of my young children have gone through this program and learned Spanish. I can tell you from personal experience that it is awesome, and my kids are better prepared for the future because they've learned another language at such an early age," Palmer stated.
The CDC will be offering parents two Spanish classes from which to choose from. One class is for parents and their children who are 18 months to 35 months old. The other class is for preschool children only, ages three to five years old. Both classes will begin on March 31, cost $125, and will last eight weeks. The classes are open to all children whose parents are members of the DTA workforce!
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