Oral and Written Languages
Coming from a rich cultural background that appreciates diversity, Dr. Hanan Ayoub-Fadil, the school’s Director (of Egyptian origin), aspires to realize through the children in our community a truly civilized world. The people of ancient Egypt built their civilization on what they learned from nature. For example, in hieroglyphics, a vulture stands for the letter A, as ancient Egyptians noticed that vultures made the sound “aaah”. Dr. Ayoub’s early years in both European and Arab countries sparked in her a strong attachment to languages, as they form the core of how we understand different cultures. She has a deep appreciation for and curiosity about how oral and written languages developed over the years and how they impacted civilizations. Because of their immense influence, languages are a priority in our school’s curriculum.
“Written language is one of the youngest forms of communication, yet one of major importance for civilization. Written language has the advantage of permanence. It can be understood at great distances as well as over extended lengths of time.” – Dr. Pamela Z. Rigg, Language Arts Manual
Languages that are related to English include living languages, such as French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, and Persian, as well as some “ancient” languages such as Hieroglyphics, Ancient Greek, Latin, Arabic, and Hebrew.
In addition to the already strong language component of our Montessori curriculum, we plan to eventually add additional languages to our program. We currently have French and German, as well as Hebrew and Hieroglyphics.
“Preschoolers get introduced to the German language with music and play as they enjoy singing, chanting, dancing, and playing simple instruments to learn age-appropriate vocabulary around their preschool life, nature, the seasons and animals. Ongoing cognitive and education research indicates learning a second language provides long-lasting benefits, enhances all forms of learning and sets the stage for future success.”
Children learn how to introduce themselves in French and learn vocabulary about nature, animals, and things around the home and at school. The class includes singing, physical activities, and stories. Maria Montessori’s methodology and activities regarding teaching language are used in the class. Learning and exposing children to a new language enhances their creativity, their communication skills, as well as their problem solving skills.