SPAN 220: Spanish for Heritage Speakers I
Prerequisites: SPAN 201 or placement by department
Credit Hours: (3)
The first of a two-course sequence (SPAN 220/221) designed to develop and expand the Spanish communication skills of Spanish-English bilinguals who have received little formal education in the Spanish language.
Detailed Description of Course
A growing number of pertinent textbooks exist, the choice of which is left to the instructor, that address the content requirements of the course, which are geared to the incremental development of the student’s level of target language expression and comprehension, both oral and written.
Course focus will be on cultivating the more formal, academic registers of language through content-based instruction that includes but is not limited to orthography, morphology, syntax and lexicon as it pertains to the learning needs of the heritage language student and is derived from readings from literary, journalistic, political and historical sources present in the textbook or made available electronically or in the traditional class handout.
Reading content broadens the student’s knowledge of not only the language being learned, but also of cultural and historical issues dealing with migration and life in various countries of origin, and the wider circumstances of Latino life in the U. S.
Detailed Description of Conduct of Course
Difficulties particular to the English-Spanish bilingual will be identified and addressed by means of exercises and assignments designed for that purpose.
Course will not be mainly and explicitly grammar-oriented, following drills and discrete-point exercises, but rather communicatively-oriented, aimed at developing spelling and grammar, as well as vocabulary and discourse skills through contextual communication developed in relation to formal thematic readings.
The course can begin with dictation in Spanish as a diagnostic tool, and from there include an introduction to syllabic division of Spanish words, followed by accent-mark rules, and this lesson can be followed by a reading on “Latinos en los EE. UU.”, itself a preamble for round-table discussion on that topic. Discussion is followed by a written assignment in target language (focus on accentuation) and a quiz on word division and accentuation. Same format for a topic such as “The future of Spanish in the U. S.,” followed by gerunds, “Spanglish,” and false cognates, etc.
Goals and Objectives of the Course
Globally, this course aims to foster a societal bilingualism that will legitimize Spanish and its speakers, as well as expand its future in our nation by preparing heritage users in oral and written Standard Academic Spanish, a register appropriate to professional endeavors as well as to upper-level courses in our department. Upon successful completion of this course a student should:
• Be able to converse in a clearly participatory fashion. Initiate, sustain, and bring to closure a variety of communicative tasks, particularly the requirements of school and current or future work situations,
• to understand the main ideas of most speech in a standard dialect and SAS in particular,
• to read with consistent understanding prose several paragraphs in length and longer, dealing with factual information and intended for a general reader in the target language,
• to meet most practical writing needs focusing on expository writing with evidence of control of syntax and avoidance of false cognates and correct orthography proper to learned target language.
Since this a communicative language course, attendance and active participation are a basic requirement and essential; each student may write a number of compositions plus short written assignments to encourage expression and ease of discourse skills over the term; and a series of short quizzes may be given in class to promote students’ development of spelling and vocabulary skills. Throughout the term, the student may make individual oral presentations in class in relation to the content of assigned course readings and class discussions. Chapter exams will round out the assessment.
Other Course Information
The course is not recommended for native speakers of Spanish. The decision of whether the presence of a minority of native speakers in a given class hinders or enhances instruction is left to the discretion of the instructor. Textbook choice will be left to the discretion of the instructor.
Review and Approval