Posted by Martin Engel, a resident of the Menlo Park: Park Forest neighborhood, on Jul 29, 2008 at 7:20 pm
On this planet, every school kid learns a second language. In fact, many kids overseas speak better English than we do here. Our kids in the US, of course, don't need to learn another language since we are the best, the most powerful, the biggest, the richest, have the most stuff, etc.
Posted by Are you kidding???, a resident of the Menlo Park: other neighborhood, on Jul 29, 2008 at 8:55 pm
Yes. I agree with these folks. The schools in super wealthy Woodside should be teaching spanish as early as possible so that the kids can communicate with the hired help. Esta muy importante tener la abilidad hablar con sus empleados. Music? Physical education? Pish posh. Get a grip folks. I learned Spanish as an adult, and music will do more to enlighten these young minds than concentrating on one language. Do they offer French, German, Arabic or Chinese to kids so young? Teach them an instrument, make them run around a bit (fighting obesity) and they will be much richer for the experience. Just a thought.
Posted by A Concerned Parent, a resident of the Woodside: other neighborhood, on Aug 1, 2008 at 9:52 am
The first paragraph of this article gives the wrong impression on readers. It reads like our kids didn't have enough time for music or physical education because they were forced to learn Spanish instead. The reality is there are plenty of time and programs for music and PE at WES as it is, and also enough time to give our children the opportunity to learn a second language and enhance their lives. So, the Spanish program didn't really have to be cut. As a person who speaks multiple languages I can say that there are a number of benefits to learning additional languages. Our children learn to communicate with people from other countries, get exposed to new cultures, and learn to easily relate to people from other countries. In addition, learning a new language helps our children exercise their brains and improve their overall learning ability. I also don't buy the theories about the right age to learn a language. I learned my second language when I was 4, third language when I was 12, and additional languages after I was over 20. Contrary to common belief, I don't just use my language skills to communicate to the hired help at home, but I use them in business, helping out friends with translations, and when I travel abroad. In summary, it's very unfortunate to suspend the Spanish program at WES for 1 - 4 grades and deny our children this great learning experience.