Language is at the heart of the human experience. Learning other languages and understanding the culture of the people who speak them is a 21st Century skill that is vital to success in the global environment in which we live. Eden Prairie Schools offers exciting opportunities for students to become immersed in two languages and cultures, Spanish and English – from kindergarten through 8th grade.
Why Spanish Immersion?Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the United States, and the fourth most important international business language. Immersion programs help us prepare our students for the jobs of tomorrow. They give students a tremendous economic advantage in an increasingly competitive world. Research has shown that exposing students to language at an early age has many benefits:
- Language skills: Students can be expected to reach high levels of world language proficiency.
- Test performance: There is a positive effect on brain development and intellectual growth. Immersion produces successful learners who perform as well or better than their peers on standardized achievement tests administered in English.
- Cognitive skills: Dual-language learners demonstrate better attention control, memory, and problem-solving skills; as well as an enhanced understanding of their primary language.
- Cultural sensitivity: Immersion students have a better understanding of, and appreciation for, diverse cultures.
Immersion Experience (K-8)
Eagle Heights Spanish Immersion School (K-6)Students in kindergarten through 6th grade can begin their immersion experience at Eagle Heights Spanish Immersion School. The school combines the excellence of an academically award-winning school district with the opportunity to learn in Spanish beginning in kindergarten. In this school, the same district standards, outcomes, curriculum and assessments applied at the district’s other elementary schools are the basis for an Eagle Heights education. All core subjects are taught, and all interactions between students and teachers are done in Spanish. Beginning in grade 3, students experience a dual literacy program; with language arts instruction in both English and Spanish, resulting in students who can learn, read, write, and speak in both languages by the time they enter middle school.Registration for Eagle Heights Spanish ImmersionSpanish Immersion is a "school choice" program that begins in kindergarten. Students across Eden Prairie can apply to attend Eagle Heights Spanish Immersion School for grades K-6. A lottery is typically held in February to select students. Registrations received after the lottery will be put on a wait list. For more information contact our Central Registration Office at (952) 975-7008 or visit www.edenpr.org/register.
Central Middle School Immersion (7-8)Students continue with the immersion experience at Central Middle School through a dual literacy program with Language & Culture and Social Studies courses taught in Spanish. These courses continue to refine student skills in learning, reading, writing, and speaking in Spanish while also exploring geography, culture and a variety of thematic studies. Instruction in other subject areas are taught in English.
High School Experience (9-12)At Eden Prairie High School, students are able to continue to advance their skills in the Spanish language by registering for the EPHS Spanish Language & Culture courses as well as Spanish V and Spanish VI which are offered through the College in the Schools (CIS) program. Students successfully completing Spanish V and Spanish VI are able to earn five college credits for each course through the University of Minnesota.
International Intern ProgramStudents K-12 also benefit from the International Intern Program, which supports as many as 16 full-year interns who work with immersion students. The interns, from Spanish speaking countries, volunteer to share their language and cultures with students while assisting in the classroom. The program is supported by the Spanish Education Fund (SEF), a 501(c)(3) non-profit that works in parallel to the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO). Learn more at SpanishEducationFund.org.