With the aim of promoting a natural environment that achieves a bilingual climate in the school, real immersion in the English language is necessary, this begins during the Nursery years and is continued into the primary school, where students receive 45% of the 32.5 teaching hours a week, in English.
Our international staff plays an important role; there are teachers of numerous nationalities, which provide a multicultural ambiance, enriching Humanitas students for challenges in the future. All the teachers of English subjects are aware of these objectives, and so communicate with their students, at all times, in this language.
Humanitas students, from 2nd year of primary education, are evaluated externally by Trinity College of London, whose accreditation is in accordance with the European framework of reference for languages.
Opportunities to speak in English are continually encouraged. Children have a good comprehension levels, but students need continuous opportunities to speak in a second language in order to improve these speaking skills. Students acquire a high level of technical and specialist vocabulary, thanks to their project work, but we are aware of the need to encourage their everyday language. To achieve both of these objectives, additional mechanisms are put in place in our teaching – learning process, such as:
1. Insist that all every day questions are in English.
2. Create lists of vocabulary and structures that children should be able to use fluently within each academic year.
3. Create a ‘reward’ system for students who use English inside and outside the classroom.
4. Create conversation groups during classes.
5. Use new technology more effectively to illustrate the correct structures of language and record the student‘s own language.
6. Enhance vocabulary using applications for use on the I-pad.
We must note that H.B.S. Tres Cantos was the first school in Madrid to include the teaching of Mandarin Chinese as a subject, in a state- assisted school. Today, more than 1000 students learn Mandarin Chinese as a second foreign language. The school has a staff of 10 native teachers in the Chinese Language Department; all teach Chinese in line with the set objectives and communicate with students at all times, in this language. Humanitas students, from 3rd year of primary, are externally evaluated by the Confucio Institute, whose accreditation is in accordance with the European framework of reference for languages.