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In Spanish I, students begin to develop communicative competence in Spanish and expand their understanding of the culture(s) of Spanish-speaking countries. Communicative competence is divided into three strands:
- Interpersonal speaking and writing as interactive processes in which students learn to communicate with another Spanish speaker
- Interpretive listening and reading as receptive processes in which students develop comprehension of Spanish
- Presentational speaking and writing in which students focus on organization of thoughts and awareness of their audience in delivering information.
In level I Spanish classes, students learn to communicate in real-life contexts about topics that are meaningful to them. To develop students’ communicative competence, emphasis is placed on use of Spanish in the classroom as exclusively as possible and on use of authentic materials to learn about the language and culture. Grammar is integrated into instruction according to the vocabulary and structures needed in the various situations in which students are required to communicate. Through the language learning process, students develop a greater understanding of the structure of their own language and the unique aspects of their own culture. An important component of learning Spanish is using the language in the real world beyond the classroom setting. One way this can be accomplished is through integration of technology into the classroom, as technology is an important means of accessing authentic information in Spanish and in providing students the opportunity to interact with other Spanish speakers. (Foreign Language Standards of Learning, VDOE)
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