Dual Immersion Basics
Why We Do It!
SMMUSD has operated a dual language program at Edison Language Academy for 35 years -- making Edison a school of choice for families who want their children to learn two languages beginning in early years and to participate in an enriched academic program. There are many cognitive, academic and social-emotional benefits to dual language education, including:
- Most immersion students reach higher levels of second-language proficiency than students in other types of school language programs.
- Students who complete dual language programs can be expected to perform as well or better than non-immersion students in traditional programs on academic tests in both languages.
- Students gain more mental flexibility, bettter vocabularies, and have a greater capacity for abstract thought, as noted in studies done at Harvard, UCLA, and in Canada.
- Students learn to appreciate other cultures and to view differences in language and customs as a positive learning experience.
- Language minority students receive that opportunity to develop a high level of proficiency in their home language as well as English.
- When children begin studying a second language at a young age, they are more likely to acquire a native-like accent.
- Students in two-way dual language programs like Edison's learn together in diverse and integrated environments where speakers of both languages are highly valued as language resources for each other.
How We Do It!
Edison uses a 90-10 Dual Language model. This is the model that is longest-established in California and which seems to yield the highest academic achievement for students and strongest second language skills. Pre-School, Transitional Kindergarten, Kindergarten and
First-grade students have instruction delivered in Spanish by a credentialed teacher fluent in both Spanish and English for 90% of the instructional day. The teachers will listen and respond to children speaking in either language but will only speak Spanish in the classroom during Spanish time.
In these grades, the students receive a daily average of 20-30 minutes of oral instruction in English at a designated time (approximately 10% of their school day). Every year the amount of English instructional time increases by 10% by the fifth grade instruction is evenly divided between the two languages.
Children at Edison learn the same curriculum and are held to the same high standards as in all Santa Monica schools. We follow the same Common Core State Standards, with the addition of the Spanish Language Arts Standards. Edison uses the Spanish versions of the same state and district adopted texts for instruction delivered in Spanish and adopted texts in English for instruction provided in English.
Initial literacy instruction for all students is provided in Spanish and formal instruction in English reading begins in 2nd grade.
Grade Level Instruction Information