Leveled offerings begin in the third year of foreign language study. At this point we hope that students will be self-selecting in their choices of courses for continuation. In the main, students who choose Level 1 should expect to engage in language-learning activities that will prepare them to take the advanced placement examinations in the modern languages. If taking a Level 1 Latin sequence they will do ever more advanced reading of complicated texts and literary analysis. Students choosing Level 2 courses can expect a rigorous experience in language and culture, but one that is more broadly based and not preparatory to the examinations for advanced college standing. In all instances, student choice will be exercised in consultation with the student’s present foreign language teacher[s] and/or the department head.
While engaging in this choice, we ask students to consider the following:
What degree of challenge do I want in my foreign language experience?
As a student choosing courses offered by the Classical and Modern Language Department [described above], you must consider for yourself what, ultimately, are your goals in taking a given foreign language. These will vary considerably from student to student, ranging from something very basic, like improving one’s control over English structure and vocabulary, to complete mastery and achievement of reading, writing, oral, and aural fluency in the language or languages you have chosen to study.
To facilitate the achievement of your goals, we in the Classical and Modern Language Department have written individual course descriptions to make clear to our students the preparation we expect, the basic content of the courses, the degree of challenge each experience affords, and the future options available to students based on his or her successful completion of a given course.
Since we believe that students must have the opportunity to measure themselves vis-à-vis their goals in a more open environment, we have eliminated levels in our first and second year courses. Students have the opportunity during this time to experiment with their own degree of commitment to their goals and acceptance of challenge offered by the individual course. Thereafter, students may choose additional courses through and beyond Advanced Placement to meet their refined goals and specific aims in their study. This choice we expect will be based on internal, personal motivation, not external criteria and pressures.
We offer a wide variety of options for study beyond year two. These range from continuation of the more traditional curriculum with an expansion into the realm of more sophisticated readings and some literature, to Advanced Placement courses that can potentially gain college and university credit for the student, to courses given entirely in the target language and gaining credit in either our department or in another [e.g. Historia de Latinoamérica, which offers credit either in history or in foreign language]. While all courses are demanding in the minimum they require, each is designed to meet as closely as possible the needs of the different individuals who comprise the student body of Wellesley High School.
This course is for the student whose high degree of success in second year French (recommended: a grade of B or better) has encouraged him/her to want to pursue a fast-paced curriculum that goes beyond the basics. It will provide the motivated student with the opportunity to master the subtleties of the various tenses of the indicative, subjunctive and conditional moods, the grammar of various pronouns, especially those that differ significantly in their use from what the student may be used to in his/her first language. Opportunities will also be provided for the student to grow into someone with more fluent and idiomatic style through composition writing, classroom debates and discussions, and projects that include both writing and public speaking. The target vocabularies deal with themes that pertain to adolescence but that look forward to adulthood and presume an eventual interest in living or studying in France. Students will also begin to read extracts from literature, newspapers and Internet documents that have been created for an audience with strong reading skills and more sophisticated tastes. Chosen authors include LaFontaine, Edmond de Rostand, Louis Malle, René Goscinny, and Charles de Gaulle. Readings and films that cover the history of France, historical figures from Charlemagne to Charles de Gaulle, and the broader influence of the French language, culture, science, technology and politics will round out the course.
541 French 41
This accelerated fourth-year course is designed for students who are self-directed and highly motivated and who want to go on to French 51 and take the AP exam at the end of the fifth year. The students will use a college level text (Bravo) to help them review more sophisticated principles of grammar, including all verb tenses. They will be responsible for reading newspaper, magazine and internet articles in French and presenting these in class once per cycle and also for participating in classroom debates and discussions. Students will use the language lab to develop their listening and speaking skills using authentic videos. Les petits enfants du siècle by Christiane Rochefort will be read to help in discussing the social problems in France in the 1960’s, along with Albert Camus’s L’hôte.
551 Advanced Placement French 51
This accelerated honors course completes students’ preparation for the Advanced Placement Examination in French language. It is highly recommended that students elect this course only if they earned a B or better in French 41. Several films, such as Jean de Florette, Manon de la source, Train de vie, Adele H., Chacun cherche son chat, will serve as the basis for conversations and essays. In addition to weekly compositions covering both concrete and abstract themes, there are substantial vocabulary tests. It is assumed that the students have mastered all verb tenses and syntax. Thus we will spend the year refining and polishing these skills to the level of sophistication expected of a native speaker. We will also spend time in the language lab practicing oral skills in ways to prepare students for the AP exam. Shorter oral reports in class are also frequent, usually dealing with the presentation of current events without the aid of written notes. There are weekly reading assignments, which are college level and often extracts from works of authors such as Beckett, Ionesco, Camus, Sartre, Mariama Bâ, and Senghor. Finally, writing daily in a journal is required. While this course may appear to be no fun and games, by no means will it exclude these!
All students should expect to take the AP exam, unless arranged otherwise with the teacher.
581 Spanish 31
This accelerated third-year honors course is designed for the independent learner who is willing to pursue foreign language study at a rapid pace. The materials in the curriculum place emphasis on the mastery verbs in both the indicative and subjunctive moods along with literature. Literary works include Un perro ha muerto by Pablo Neruda, Un día de estos by Gabriel García Márquez, Abel y Caín by Jorge Luis Borges, La camisa de Margarita by Ricardo Palma, and others. Students are expected to understand the teacher and to be express themselves in more sophisticated Spanish. Listening and speaking activities are designed to help students to develop their communication and comprehension skills. Besides the text, Ven Conmigo 3, videos, listening and interactive CD-Rom activities are used during the year. Students are expected also to engage in class discussions using both old along with new vocabulary learned in the lesson.
584 Spanish 41
This is a challenging course designed for the student who wants to augment his or her vocabulary and perfect his or her use of grammatical structures. Students who take this course should have the goal of moving into Advanced Placement Spanish the following year and taking the A.P. exam at the end of year five. Upon entering the course, the student is expected to be proficient in using all verb tenses, with the exception of the imperfect subjunctive in adverbial clauses, which is taught during this year. We work throughout the year to attain a level of sophistication and accuracy in all modalities (speaking, listening, reading and writing) which reflect four years of study. New vocabulary may include up to 200 words per chapter. The main textbook is Conexiones, used at university level, and a full-length play is read, En la ardiente oscuridad by Antonio Buero Vallejo. Excerpts from other works of fiction and nonfiction may be read such as Me llamo Rigoberta Menchú y así me nació la conciencia in the Human Rights thematic unit, as well as films such as La Historia Oficial and El Norte. All assessments and all communication in and out of class are in the Spanish.
591 Advanced Placement Spanish 51
This course is a rigorous preparation for the AP Spanish Language Examination given in early May. The main text, Triángulo, provides the students with 10 thematic units and exercises similar to those that will appear on the actual AP exam. The exercises include listening, reading, writing and speaking practice. The course also utilizes two additional books, Abriendo Paso Literature and Abriendo Paso Grammar. Besides these elements, students will study the Spanish Civil War, the poetry of Federico García Lorca [Romancero Gitano], and Pablo Neruda [Walking Around], as well as the novela Crónica de una muerte anunciada by Gabriel García Márquez, and the movie La lengua de la mariposa.
The following courses can be taken for either Level 1 or Level 2 credit. Students are grouped together in the classes and the content covered is the same. This results from the aggregate number of students enrolled in these courses in German and Latin. Consideration is given in the appropriate grading of students enrolled at each level.
681[/682] German 31[/32]
Students in German 3 will make the transition from textbook-based instruction to study of the language and culture through thematic units and literature. Units include Landeskunde – die Stadt, and Kunst – der Blaue Reiter. These also contain such stories as Das Unugunu, Das Römerzimmer, and the mystery Kein Schnapps für Tamara. Two films, Lola Rennt and Das Boot supplement the curriculum. These authentic materials provide the context for continued extension of vocabulary and grammar. In addition, students use a German grammar, Pons Grammatiktrainer, appropriate for students of the language, but written entirely in German. Students in German 3 will complete most of the formal grammar required for clear and accurate expression in German, including passive voice formations, contrary-to-fact conditions, and all adjective endings.
691[/692] German 41[/42]
The text of this course, Kaleidoskop, is appropriate for preparation for any student for the advanced placement examination given in German in early May. It offers a variety of thematically based units, e.g. Freizeit, Kommunikation, Deutschland im 21. Jahrhundert, that include culture, literature, and grammar for review, along with completion of the one or two grammatical points not covered in German 31/32. Approximately five of the Kaleidoskop units will be completed during the year. To supplement the students’ experience, three major themes are addressed during the course, one on German Classical and Romantic poetry, one on the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, and one on racism, beginning with considerations of the Third Reich, and then moving into modern Germany and the world in general, including Wellesley. A final component of the course is participation in das Deutsche Theaterfest at Mount Holyoke College just prior to the Advanced Placement examination. The course concludes with a brief overview of German film from the Expressionist period of the 1920s to the modern day.
N.B. The AP Examination may be taken either at the end of this year of study, or at the end of German 51[/52].
xxx[/xxx] German 51[/52]
The text, Kaleidoskop, is completed during this year. This provides not only additional review of grammar, but also additional exposure to culture and literature. Separate thematic units for this year include Modern German poetry, drama, the novel, and film. Examples of some of the works covered here are: Mann, Erzählungen, Dürrenmatt, Der Besuch der Alten Dame, Die Physiker, Frisch, Biedermann und die Brandstifter, Böll, Erzählungen, Kafka, Die Verwandlung, and the films Martha Kocht and Lenins Erben. Throughout the course ongoing attention is paid to students’ continuing improvement in the areas of reading, writing, listening, and speaking.
631 Latin 31
641 Latin 41
651 Latin 51
These courses offer the advanced student an opportunity to broaden and deepen his/her experience in Latin literature with continued emphasis on grammatical structure, vocabulary, and English derivatives.
In order to accommodate third-year, fourth-year, and fifth-year students, the following
topics are addressed. Course offerings each year and expectations for student performance are determined according to the student’s experience.
Roman Authors I: This course is designed to give the student an understanding of certain works of Latin prose and poetry and of their influence upon the Western literary tradition. Prose selections include Cicero’s First Catilinarian Oration and excerpts from Sallust’s Catiline. Readings from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Fasti, and Tristia form the poetry component of the course.
Roman Authors II: This course complements Roman Authors I in both spirit and intent, with special attention paid to the roles of the orator and poet in classical culture.
The prose selection is Cicero’s Oration For Archias; the poems are chiefly those of Catullus and Horace.
Virgil’s Aeneid: This course involves the study of the language, achievement, and historical significance of Virgil’s epic Aeneid. Reference to Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey and to related works of Latin literature supplements this study.
632 Latin 32
642 Latin 42
652 Latin 52
Course descriptions are the same as those for Latin 31, Latin 41, and Latin 51. Due consideration is given to the student’s experience and performance in previous Latin courses as well as to appropriate grading standards.
601/602 La Historia de Latinoamérica: Precolonialismo al presente – 3 credits, one semester
En este curso estudiaremos la historia de los países de Latinoamérica (América del Sur, América Central, El Caribe y México), empezando con sus pasados precoloniales, el colonialismo, su independencia, la variedad de gobiernos (democracia hasta dictadura) y sus relaciones con los demás países en el pasado y el presente. Habrá una variedad de latinoamericanos que vendrán a la clase para hablar de sus países.
El curso será exclusivamente en español y hay que haber terminado el tercer año de español a Wellesley High School o mostrar facilidad nativa con la lengua para matricularse.
603/604 La Historia de la España Moderna, 1492-Presente – 3 credits, one semester
Empezando con la unificación de España en 1492, hablaremos de la boda de Fernando e Isabel y el nacimiento del imperio español con el descubrimiento de América por Cristobal Colón. Hablaremos de <La Edad de Oro> y los años magníficos del imperio en el siglo diez y seis hasta el derrote de la flota española en 1588 por los británicos. Estudiaremos muy brevemente el ocaso lento del imperio durante casi trescientos años, hasta la guerra entre España y los Estados Unidos de 1898. Partiendo de este punto, el curso estudiará la temporada anterior a la Guerra Civil Española, y pasaremos a estudiar La Primera República de 1931-36, la Guerra Civil de 1936-39, y la Dictadura del Generalísimo Francisco Franco de 1939-75.
593 Advanced Language 61/62
This course can provide an additional year of foreign language study for the rare, (usually transfer) student or native speaker who has completed the normal language sequence at the end of the junior year. In the senior year, the student will meet with the normally scheduled advanced course but, because of an alternating year curriculum, will be studying material which differs from that of the preceding year.
532 French 32
This course assumes that students have demonstrated proficiency in the second-year French class (achieving on average C or better). French 32 offers a challenging curriculum that goes beyond the basics. Students will learn to use a variety of tenses (the imperfect, the future, the conditional and the tenses of the subjunctive). We will also strive for proficiency in the use of all pronouns. Vocabulary shall be learned thematically through units pertaining to the home, hotels, hospitals, traveling, the city, etc. Participation in class discussions and exercises forms a significant portion of the student’s involvement. The student also has the opportunity to practice and further develop oral skills in the language lab. Short compositions are frequent, and homework is daily. Readings along with the viewing of news programs and films, such as Cyrano de Bergerac, Au revoir les enfants, Amélie, will enhance the student’s knowledge and understanding of Francophone cultures. Additionally, the student will be assigned projects to be presented to the class which analyze art, music, and life in Francophone countries outside of France, particularly those communities and states in Canada and Africa. And yes, we do still play “Jacques a dit”!
542 French 42
The text used in this course is a college level text, Bravo. We will not cover the book entirely but we will make sure to cover all the material necessary for students to improve all their skills in all four modalities, reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Students need to be willing to use only the target language in class not only for debates and class discussions but also when having one on one discussion with their peers.
Students will have an opportunity to read literary selections, such as La Lueur de Soleil couchant by the Francophone author Bernard Dadié, French articles and see French movies (Indochine, Le Dîner des cons, Amélie, Jean de Florette). These will then be used as a basis for our discussions.
552 French 52
This course is designed for students who are at the most advanced level of French, but have no intention of taking the AP exam. Students should still highly motivated to continue the practice of their French skills, with a special emphasis on listening and speaking. In this course we will examine French films and their remaking in The United States. Each film shall serve as a cultural document through which we can attempt to understand the different manners in which the French and American societies depict and reveal themselves. Watching a foreign film is a bit like traveling abroad. Our goal is to travel together in the hope of understanding and being able to analyze the cultural logic of differences. There will be short writing assignments which review and critique films, but greater weight shall be directed towards participation in class discussions. In class we will watch several French films and extracts of their American counterparts. Some of the contrasting films viewed are: Trois hommes et un couffin/Three Men and a Baby, La Cage aux folles/The Bird Cage, A bout de souffle/Breathless, Diabolique/Diabolical. The manner in which we discuss these films will then serve as a model for a midyear project in which the student presents and discusses a film and its remake. The year culminates in a project which involves group work on the making of an American movie as well as what might be considered its French remake.
560A Focus A: Spanish
This course is designed primarily for juniors and seniors who find a foreign language learning a more challenging experience. Its purpose is to demonstrate the importance of knowing Spanish and to discover useful ways to study a language that make it easily accessible to the student. We will use a practical participatory approach to language learning in which the students will be exposed to the Spanish language and the culture that goes along with it. Class will involve speaking and will open our eyes to the fabulous world where Spanish is spoken. The material will be presented at a pace that allows for solid comprehension of a specific amount of Spanish.
560B Focus B: Spanish
This is the second year of study in the Focus sequence and is again designed to facilitate foreign language learning for those who find the experience more challenging. Students will review all of the basic material presented in Focus A and continue to build on this knowledge base. Students will be presented with several new verbs (regular, irregular and stem changing). In addition, students will continue to increase their breadth of vocabulary with topics such as food, family, sports and activities, household vocabulary, chores etc.
582 Spanish 32
This course is designed for the student with an interest in achieving proficiency in speaking, reading, listening and writing in Spanish. All communication in class and all assessments are in Spanish. In this course the student will learn the remainder of the indicative verb tenses and become proficient in the use of the present subjunctive in noun and adjective clauses. Oral presentations, including skits, monologues, dialogues and impromptu conversations will be balanced with written exams and compositions to continually assess students oral and written proficiency. The text used is the third year of Ven Conmigo, as well as all ancillary materials. Films and authentic texts may be added to the curriculum.
585 Spanish 42
The text of this course, Charlemos un poco, offers an extensive review of all Spanish verb tenses with a broader presentation of grammatical irregularities, useful vocabulary for daily life, cultural information of various sorts, as well as literature. Marianela by Benito Pérez Galdós and poems such as Oda a una alcachofa by Pablo Neruda are read. This course will discuss in depth the topics of Hispanics in the United States, Argentina in the 1970s and various other cultural and historical topics. In addition, as a component of the unit on Hispanics in the USA, students will view La Historia Oficial.
592 Spanish 52
This course is a full year and is designed for students with an interest in achieving a fine degree of fluency in speaking and reading. All communication in class and all assessments are in Spanish. Students will review and amplify vocabulary and grammatical concepts. The texts used are Spanish Vocabulary and Una vez más. Students must be prepared to discuss current events in addition to literary work. Literature will include authors like Gabriel García Márquez, Horacio Quiroga, Ana María Matute and others. In addition, students will study some political and cultural issues from Spain and Latin America through research and movies such as, El padre Romero, La lengua de las Mariposas, Ay Carmela!, and others. Writing activities will include essays and literary criticism. Additionally, in the language lab students will review and expand vocabulary.