Casper Dual Immersion

Informational Meetings

If you want your child in the DLI program, the District said that you will have to attend an informational meeting and fill out a form to show your interest for Spanish and enrollment for Chinese.

These are the dates for the meetings:

Tuesday, Nov. 19 – 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. (Light refreshments provided)
Fairdale and Garfield Rooms, Central Services Facility
 
Wednesday, Dec. 4 – 9 to 10 a.m. (Light refreshments provided)
Garfield Room, Central Services Facility
 
Wednesday, Dec. 11 – Noon to 1 p.m. (Lunch is provided)
Westwood Room, Central Services Facility
 
Thursday, Jan. 9 – 4 to 6 p.m. Paradise Valley Elementary Open House
Paradise Valley Elementary, 22 Magnolia, Casper
 
Thursday, Jan. 9 – 6 p.m. Park Elementary Open House
Park Elementary, 140 W. 9th, Casper
 
Tuesday, Jan. 21 – Noon to 1 p.m. (Lunch is provided)
Jefferson Room, Central Services Facility

Opening the World’s Opportunities to Wyoming Students

Casper Dual Immersion Program – Parental Task Force

Imagine a Wyoming classroom of first graders having a conversation in Chinese.  Imagine a Wyoming born and breed student giving a presentation entirely in Spanish.  With both of these situations, imagine that these students’ test scores are at or above their English only peers.  Are these two scenarios impossible for Wyoming’s children?  Absolutely not!  A group of parents, teachers, businesses and community members are striving to allow Casper families the option of enrolling their children in either a Spanish or Chinese dual immersion program.

The dual immersion philosophy is based on a young child’s openness and predisposition to learning language.   For those families that choose to enroll them in a dual immersion program, the student would receive 50% of their instruction in English and 50% in a second language taught by a native speaker.  Both teachers would work as a two person team to ensure that ALL subject material is presented clearly, understood and is mastered.  The teacher who is teaching in English would incorporate appropriate reviews of the subject material taught in the second language.  This is to ensure that all students are understanding the material and making progress needed to pass the annual standardized tests.

How do we know this can work?  The successful model we are emulating is the State of Utah’s Dual Immersion Program.  The idea was first conceived as an economic engine for attracting businesses to the state as well as preparing Utah’s students for the global economy.  The State of Utah has over 10,000 students learning in a second language every year at 85 schools.  The program offers four language immersion programs; Spanish, Chinese, French and Portuguese.   Utah’s goal is to have its dual immersion high school freshman capable of taking and passing the AP language exam.  Utah is providing their students with the opportunity to prepare for the global economy.   Will Wyoming?

Interested in joining the conversation?  Join the discussion on our Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wyoming-Dual-Language-Immersion-Program-Parental-Task-Force/143589082400181

 

 

20 thoughts on “Informational Meetings

  1. Greg Duncan on said:

    As someone who feels like a Wyoming citizen by extension, this is very exciting to see the state expanding these conversations. EVERY child should have the opportunity to take his or her place in a competitive international arena, and every other developed nation knows that being fluent in a language other than home language is critical to that purpose. Wyoming can help lead the rest of the country to this realization. Congratulations on your vision and good luck as you move this toward reality!

    • theatruewells on said:

      Thanks, Greg, for your support! It will take supporters from near and far to make sure that this is an opportunity for Wyoming’s children.

  2. Kit MOYA on said:

    Have worked in Dual Language for many years. Very successful program, but not for every district/student population. Be very careful and follow the guidelines of the Dual Language Program otherwise it can fail. Parents and community responds very well when they get to see the success of their children. There is going to be opposition when it get confused with the bilingual program. Make sure to make clear the difference between the two. Good luck!

    • theatruewells on said:

      Hi Kit: Thank you for your feedback and well wishes. We are modeling ours after Utah’s program and do not plan to deviate. I understand that some individuals will misinterpret our DLI program with other ELL/ESL programs. We are working very hard at educating the key constituents as well as the community at large as to the differences. As does Utah, we do not plan to exclude any group and will let the parents decide if this is a good fit for their child.

  3. Lindsey Tempest on said:

    I’m so so excited for this!! My daughter was in the summer program and is now taking the after school program. This is such an amazing way to teach our children diversity, culture and learn a language at once! Thank you for bringing this to Casper.

    • theatruewells on said:

      Thanks, Lindsey. I am glad your daughter is able to participate in the after school program! I was able to be at the first day of the summer camp and I was astounded at how fantastic the teachers were AND how quickly the kids caught on. ‘Tis truly amazing to watch these linguistic geniuses learn language. Young children are just biologically programmed to pick up language easily. Amazing, amazing!

  4. It sounds like a great program, but I know that my children would not be enrolled. I do not believe they have the patience to handle the change. They get frustrated too easily with school as it is now. They would give up if they had to figure it out in a different language as well.

    • theatruewells on said:

      Thanks for your comments Lisa. You are a wonderful example! We want parents to give this some good and thorough thought and how they see DLI fitting in with their families. We want it to be open to everyone, but it may not be a good fit for every child. Just like other programs in the district are not always good fits for every child as well. This is a parental choice and I commend you for thinking about it.

  5. I think it’s great to have a second language for employment skills later on, but I would not enroll my children. My third grader cries doing her homework because she gets a lot each night and my husband and I are employed full time. We don’t get home until around six or so, and some nights she is up past 9 PM just completing her assignments. My kindergartner struggles with special needs, but he is not allowed in any classes that might assist with that because he doesn’t have a mental deficiency. The school district should concentrate on the current needs of kids that are struggling before implementing new things. I understand that means a diversity of needs (for example, students that have non-English speaking parents probably struggle because they might not speak English well if at all), but I think adding more to the current curriculum is probably not beneficial to the students that are doing well academically even if they struggle.

    • theatruewells on said:

      Hi Kimbery and thank you for your feedback. I disagree that the school district should only concentrate on students that are struggling even though I sympathize with your struggles. Every child needs to be educated to the degree that will make him or her successful later in life. Our district has the charge to educate each child – whether struggling or not. What is wonderful about the dual language immersion framework is that it doesn’t “add more to the current curriculum” it only changes how the current curriculum is taught. It is also completely voluntary and parents need to choose what is best for their families and, especially, their child/ren. While it may not be a good fit for you and your family (which is fine), there are many parents who are interested and would like the option for their children. I wish you the best with your children’s education.

  6. I would put my children in a Spanish Immersion program. My son is currently not being challenged and could use something extra to do to encourage him during the day. I would only do it if it didn’t take away any other school activities (PE/Art…). I’d be interested in hearing more about how this would look.

    • Skye one of the wonderful things of this program is that will not add anything to the kid’s day (like after school’s programs) it will will not take away anything as well, the kids continue with the same activities and classes, the difference is that some of them will be teach in the second language. For instance in kindergarten they will learn math and science in Spanish or Chinese.

  7. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the information session but am interested in putting my daughter on the wait list. How might I go about placing her on the list? She would be an incoming 1st grader. Thanks!

    • theatruewells on said:

      -Great! Call Bev or Beth in the enrollment office at 307-253-5322 to sign up for the wait list. You may also come to one of our future open houses. We will have Open Houses each Thursday for the following 4 weeks.

      Jan. 31st – 7pm
      Feb. 7th – 6pm
      Feb. 14th – Noon (lunch will be served)
      Feb. 21st – 7pm

  8. This is amazing. A lot of people do not realize that even though we are in Wyoming we are raising a completely different generation. Not only will they be competing with local people for jobs as they get older, but other countries. We need to do this for our children’s future!!!

  9. I’ve been reading some of the articles that have been published over the last few days and most only mention kindergarten. Are you still entertaining the idea of a first grade class as well or are the three schools only interested in starting with a kindergarten class?

    • theatruewells on said:

      Hi Hank: Thanks for your question. We are still pushing for a 1st grade class start in addition to a kinder start. That being said, the logistics may not be in our favor. We have to wait until the three interested schools decide what they want to do and then approach the topic. While I am still hopeful (as my son will be a 1st grader), we need to wait a few more weeks until we have more of the unknowns answered. Hang tight and please stay involved. We know we won’t be able to do it if we don’t have enough interested parents.

  10. Kristen on said:

    Can you email me how this initiative started as I’d like to start it in cheyenne

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