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|South Carolina’s School District of Oconee County Provides Language Learning to Younger Students|
Through a new partnership with Rosetta Stone made possible by Title 1 funding, every student in the district’s 10 elementary schools will have access to the company’s digital learning program. This will help SDOC students develop world language reading, writing and speaking skills at an accelerated pace and much earlier in their academic journey than typical foreign language sequences.
Despite dwindling school budgets and a shortage of foreign language instructors, there has been a dramatic increase in South Carolina school districts taking proactive measures to provide early language learning programs. This could be the result of the state’s new graduate profile and its emphasis on mastering multiple languages. Recent research also shows that early language learning results in better pronunciation and higher levels of proficiency, as well as several other cognitive benefits that are associated with being bilingual.
“The high engagement demonstrated by the 400 students at
“The program is particularly appealing because the technology allows students to learn on the go, whether they’re at home or in class,” she continued. “The language instruction is also self-paced allowing students to learn at their own rate.”
Rosetta Stone has 24 different languages available. Each SDOC schools selected four or five from these offerings to focus on with their students; typically Chinese, French, German, Spanish or English. Each world language implementation will vary from school to school. Most students will have time allotted during the school day to use the Rosetta Stone program in a computer lab or classroom setting. The two schools that already have a language teacher on staff (one in Chinese, the other in Spanish) will make the digital program part of a blended learning curriculum. SDOC teachers will also have access to the program for professional or personal development.
“We hope other rural school districts will look at the success SDOC has found with their digital language program and recognize that they, too, can give their students a head start in becoming proficient in a second language,” said Matt Hall, vice president, Enterprise & Education for Rosetta Stone. “We applaud The
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