"HANDS ON SPANISH" ADDS CULTURAL DIVERSITY AWARENESS AT CHEROKEE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Each morning, students enjoy a live morning television program that is networked throughout Cherokee Elementary. This morning production is coordinated by Ms. Cathy Gonzalez, Media Director for Cherokee. Added to this network is the availability of lesson video on-line with "Hands On Spanish." Every student at Cherokee views and responds to progressive Spanish lessons. Currently, the students and faculty are on lesson three of the year-long learning program. With each program introduction, students receive a one page syllabus with the printed words they will learn in the lesson. The first lesson was entitle Greetings/Salutations. The first word of the learning experience was "Hola" (ohlah) or "Hello." The second lesson of the program is Additional Greetings/Mas Salutaciones. Currently students are on the program, "Speaking Courteously/La Cirtesia."
Cherokee Elementary School Principal, Dr. Wanda Jackson commented, "At Cherokee, we realize the increasing need for our students to gain awareness of cultural diversity. This Spanish program has been well received as we usher young students into a changing world. With my review of language diversity, my educational team and I chose 'Hands On Spanish.' The progressive learning program titles teach young students about the need to be increasingly aware of their environment. Last week, I read an article about the need for additional diverse education. The story said, ’with a growing population of diverse patients, hospitals and health systems increasingly must address language barriers between non-English-speaking patients and providers, and sometimes must do so on stretched budgets. Hospitals, clinics and private practitioners typically pay high costs for interpretation services.' When I read this story, I knew that Cherokee was on the right track for helping students." Dr. Jackson also shares that the program adds a lighter moment to the day of her teachers. "We laugh at each other as we speak a new language. Parents of our students can also access their child's program and learn along with them," said Dr. Jackson.
Here, Dr. Jackson, at left and Cathy Gonzalez make plans for the next Hands On Spanish lesson for the Cherokee television classroom network.