More than forty years of research consistently documents the power of immersion to help students attain high levels of second language proficiency. In an immersion program, the teacher only speaks in the target language so that students quickly acquire second language skills. No other type of instruction, short of living in a second-language environment, is as successful in helping a child learn another world language.KindergartenMcIlvaine Early Childhood Center is home to Caesar Rodney's "Littlest Riders." One hundred of the 550 students attending McIlvaine participate in the school's Chinese immersion classrooms. Fifty of the students participate in a Spanish Immersion Program. Students in these classrooms spend 50% of their day learning in content English and the other 50% of the day learning content in either Chinese or Spanish.ElementaryAfter their Kindergarten immersion experience at McIlvaine Early Childhood Center, students graduate to first grade at either Allen Frear Elementary or W.B. Simpson Elementary School to continue their Chinese Language experience or W.R. Brown to continue their Spanish Language experience. The Immersion day in grades 1 - 5 is structured similarly to the day in Kindergarten; 50% of the day students learn in content English and the other 50% of the day students learn content in either Chinese or Spanish.Middle School
Chinese Immersion joined Fifer and Postlethwait Middle Schools in August 2018. The middle school Immersion day is a bit different than the day in grades K - 5. Five of the students' courses are taught in English with the other two classes (Science and language-specific literacy) are taught in the target language. Spanish will join the middle schools in August 2020.High School
The World Language program enables a student to begin to develop a fluency in French, German, Spanish, Latin, Chinese, Italian, and Arabic. The program also provides an understanding of the roots of a civilization that gave rise to our own. All language courses comply with the current state and national frameworks. All language courses are of equal difficulty. Most colleges require 2 or 3 credits in the same world language.