5th Grade Parent Information Night 2016

Summary of Middle School Meeting for Incoming 6th graders in 2016-2017
Held on March 10, 2016 from 6:00 -6:30pm

The Middle School level in the Qué Tal Language Program is an exciting and challenging time for the students.

The main goal at this level is for our students to be able to continue mastering the language at a pace and schedule that best suits their reality. Due to the unique characteristics of the program, this is a level that is only open to current Qué Tal students.

Middle school classes will run 7:40 am to 8:30 am at St. Barnabas Lutheran Church on Old Rockford Road. Parents are responsible for dropping off their students at the location and the school district provides transportation to East, West and Central Middle Schools. Teacher assignments are announced during the first week of August.

Qué Tal Middle School students are actually taking a high school-level Spanish class. The first year we taught a middle school class at Qué Tal, we realized that it was very difficult to cover all the new material and practice what they already knew during three teaching periods. In our desire to provide a better opportunity to our students, Qué Tal and the District of Wayzata agreed to join forces. The District committed to allow Qué Tal students access to the media center during their regular Spanish class in the Middle School so they could work on Qué Tal assignments. By having these 5 periods a week during half of the school year, we are able to continue teaching at a higher level and maintain a good pace.

The scheduling of new classes in the district is a very thorough and complicated process. All Wayzata Middle Schools agreed to help us having all 6th grade Qué Tal students placed in Spanish classes during the first half of the year. That helps with the amount of homework assigned.

This is how the schedule looks after the agreement took place:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
7:40am – 8:30am Spanish class at our location Spanish class at our location Spanish class at our location
Study Hall at MS Spanish written or online assignment Spanish written or online assignment Spanish written or online assignment Spanish written or online assignment Spanish written or online assignment

This is a much better use of their language time in school. But for this to work, the students have to display great levels of responsibility to use their time wisely. At the time their peers attend regular Spanish classes, all Qué Tal students are directed to the Media Center in their Middle Schools (study hall) and they need to concentrate on their assignments whether these assignments are online or in hard copy. The students should have more than enough time to work on the assignments during their study hall in the Middle School. They should not have any or very little work to take home (especially during their first semester). Qué Tal Teachers are not allowed to be at the regular schools and the district cannot have a staff member to supervise them. Qué Tal students learn the rules and routine of working independently. This year was our third using iPads, where the students have full access to their Textbook (app), assignment calendar, and most of their homework.

As a result of this arrangement, Qué Tal teachers will be responsible for submitting the grade to the District of Wayzata. The grades will be reported as Pass or Fail. No percentage will be given. This will not affect their records because GPA is not part of the Middle School years.

The Middle School curriculum is divided into three different levels:

MS 1 6th graders Starts with Realidades 2 (Chapter 1-2 & 3A)

National Spanish Examination Level 1

MS 2

 

7th graders Continues with Realidades 2 (Chapter 3B,4,5,6&7A)
MS 3 8th graders Finish Realidades 2 (Chapter 7B,8 & 9)

National Spanish Examination Level 2

At the end of those 3 years, our 8th graders may enroll into Spanish 3 directly at the WHS and don’t need to test out.

We believe the NSE is an excellent experience for our sixth and eighth graders. The NSE is a nationwide standardized assessment taken online for grades 6th – 12th. The district of Wayzata offers this opportunity to the High School students only.

The National Spanish Test measures two different levels of mastering the language:

  • How much has the student learned of the language for the level he/she is being tested?(Achievement)
  • How well does the student use the language at this time? (Proficiency)

This is the 8th year that Qué Tal has participated in this assessment/contest. Every year we have had excellent results, and nearly 80% of our students have earned recognition (Gold, Silver or Bronze medals). The NSE is taken in our location, using their iPads.

Overall, the middle school level is a wonderful stage in the process of mastering the language. We strongly recommend it so the students can maintain what they already know and master more advanced structures of the language. But it is also a family commitment. The students are challenged to take a high school level class during their Middle School years. At Qué Tal we know that they are ready for this challenge and we encourage them to continue!

As we have shared before, our reenrollment is now automatic. Returning parents are already enrolled for next year. Our opt-out period ends April 29, 2016. Please contact the office if you are not returning.

The Middle School tuition for 2016-2017 is $1,200.

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