Cole st gerard school french immersion kindergarten information january 30 2013
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École St. Gerard School French Immersion / Kindergarten Information – January 30, 2013. EARLY FRENCH IMMERSION. …a welcoming community where we nurture faith, encourage excellence in learning and inspire students to serve others, making the world a better place.

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École St. Gerard School French Immersion / Kindergarten Information – January 30, 2013

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École St. Gerard School

French Immersion / Kindergarten Information – January 30, 2013


…a welcoming community where we nurture faith, encourage excellence in learning and inspire students to serve others, making the world a better place.

Should parents be able to speak French if their child is in French Immersion?

  • Designed for children of non French-speaking families.

  • Teachers are aware of this when they send home notices or assign homework.

  • Reporting is in English.

How can parents/caregivers prepare their children for Kindergarten?

  • Model a positive attitude towards school.

  • Read and recite nursery rhymes and stories.

  • Provide writing tools and paper.

  • Help children explore their environment.

  • Go on outings to expand their horizons and enhance learning.

  • Provide suitable toys and manipulatives to enrich play experiences.

If parents don’t speak French, how can they help their child and be involved at the school?

  • Provide a study area and regular routines for doing homework.

  • Show an active interest in

    their learning.

  • Volunteer in various ways during or after the school day.

  • Read to children in English and have them write to friends and relatives.

Immersion: Different From Regular English Programming

ELA isintroduced in Grade 3 ratherthan Grade 2. Why?

  • Alignswithrenewed curriculum in SK, all western provinces and twonorthernterritories

  • Alignswith effective practices in language acquisition for primary grades.

Interdisciplinary Curriculum

  • Integration of subjects

  • Projects, inquiry and play

  • Develops knowledge, skills and values

Why inquiry-based learning?

  • Mirrors how students learn

  • Students explore their interests in depth

  • Students develop their communication skills in French

Why it works!

  • Authentic, meaningful contexts

  • Driven by student questions

  • Oral language emphasis

  • Shapes identity as a learner of French

French Immersion Programs in Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools

Cardinal Léger is a dual-track school—offering Immersion and regular programming. The others are single-track French Immersion.

Who teaches the French Immersion program?

  • A bilingual teacher

  • First or second language

  • Variety of accents

How is French taught to young children?

  • In the same way that toddlers learn to speak at home - they learn by listening and speaking.

  • Students tend to use single words or broken phrases by about Christmas.

  • Child understands most of what the teacher says in French as part of classroom activities. Children are usually speaking most of their French in group learning situations at this stage.

  • Usually reply to the teachers and speak among

    themselves in English, but with some French

    “sprinkled” in.

  • By the end of June, they are able to speak more

    French themselves, but most would not converse

    in French.

Will French Immersion affect my child’s social development since they are not necessarily attending their neighbourhood school?

  • Form friendships with classmates

  • Socialize in extra curricular


Is French Immersion for everyone?

  • A child who has a serious speech or hearing impairment may have problems in French Immersion due to language processing. Students with impairments can still be in immersion.

  • The student who would excel in a regular English program will probably excel in an immersion program; the student who would have academic difficulties in an English program will likely experience those same difficulties in immersion.

We aim to serve all students to the best of our ability with the resources available to us.

Why is French Immersion good for children?

  • Positive effects on brain development

  • Developmentally appropriate

  • Meets the needs

    of each child

How are French Immersion students assessed and evaluated?

  • Observe students’ progress

  • Record/collect evidence of learning/portfolio

  • Observation checklists and rating scales, rubrics…

How do parents know how well their child is doing in French Immersion?

  • Parent/teacher meetings, informal visits

  • Progress reports

  • Teacher-parent-student conferences

  • Telephone conversations

  • Notes home/email/blog

When do students start to learn reading and writing in English?

  • Pre-reading skills which are taught in the home encourage the development of literacy in any language.

  • Many reading skills taught in French transfer to English.

  • Once some fluency in French is well established, students are ready to begin to study English Language Arts beginning in grade 3.

How does a French Immersion program affect my child’s English skills?

  • Initial lag behind unilingual peers in reading and writing skills.

  • Current research indicates that

    the English language skills of

    French Immersion students

    equal and, in some areas,

    exceed the achievement of

    the students taught solely

    in English.

Will my child learn the same content as students in English classes?

  • Immersion curriculum is created by the provincial Ministry of Education and stands alone.

  • There are slight variations in outcomes but for the most part, academic goals remain the same regardless of the language of instruction.

Why is it recommended that students continue in French Immersion through high school?

  • Early years of an immersion program develop basic competencies in the French language. However, like any other skill, it will get “rusty” if its use is greatly decreased.

How much French should a good continuing immersion program offer?

  • Christian Ethics, some Math, Language Arts, Social Studies and History are offered in French.

  • Some Cyber School courses in

    French for students who experience

    difficulty fitting immersion classes into

    their timetable.

  • Advance Placement is for students who wish to study and write an exam for possible university credits.

After several years in immersion, isn’t my son or daughter already “bilingual”?

  • Students may seems quite comfortable in French, but that does not guarantee bilingualism.

  • The goal of French Immersion is to achieve “functional bilingualism”—being able to successfully manage in a personal and professional setting entirely in French.

How will colleges, universities and future employers know that students have completedpart of their education in French?

  • Ministry of Education identifies French courses

    on all transcripts.

  • Bilingual certificate for completing 12 courses in

    French at the Grade 10-12 levels.

What comes after continuing immersion?

  • According to tests such as the Foreign Service Exams, continuing immersion graduates are functionally bilingual, capable of functioning in most social, travel and work situations.

  • Bilingual graduates are more likely to qualify for jobs in government, tourism, retail, and travel services.

  • There are an increasing number of post-secondary opportunities for students to access courses taught in French in a variety of subject areas at English universities in every province in Canada.

What if we transfer to another school division or province?

  • Immersion is available in most urban centers in Canada

  • A child transferring out of immersion

    very early – before English Language Arts is introduced – may experience a brief lag in this subject.

  • Consultation with the new teacher and some work at home overcomes this challenge very quickly.

If a child is struggling in French Immersion and transfers to English program, will he or she likely do better?

  • Performance will be similar in both languages.

  • Parents can offer help in English which can make the move worthwhile for students.

French Immersion

…offering a world of opportunities for our children that they might not otherwise have experienced as unilingual citizens.

22 minute video

École St. Gerard School

  • Single-stream French Immersion setting

  • 460 students from K-8

  • 20 classrooms

Our Mission

Be it known to all who enter

St. Gerard School that we are striving to be like Jesus at all times.

Our mission is to develop our hearts and minds as we journey together toward the light of God.

We are Children of the Light.

Nous sommes les enfants de la lumière.

Our Teaching Staff

  • Classroom teachers

  • Learning Assistance teachers

  • ELO (Extra Learning Opportunity catalyst teacher)

  • Band instructor

  • Speech Pathologist

Service and Support Staff

  • Educational Assistants

  • French Language Monitor

  • Office Coordinator and Secretary

  • Library Clerk

  • Caretakers

  • School Counselor

  • School Nurse

  • Police Officer (liaison)


  • Inclusive

  • Cultural diversity

  • Gospel values and virtues

  • Prayer, devotions, liturgies, retreat

  • Masses at St. Mary’s Church

  • Safe, friendly and a positive environment

  • Anti-bullying policy


  • Academic focus

  • Second language acquisition

  • Promote French language and culture

  • Computer lab / Smart boards

  • Band program

School-wide initiatives

  • Nutrition Positive / In Motion initiatives

  • Extra-curricular activities

  • Spirit Days – House leagues

  • Recycling

  • Milk Program

  • Supervised lunch break

  • Field trips, skating at Cosmo, school rink

  • School website

  • Community partnership activities


  • Catholic Community Council

  • Parental involvement – Family events

  • Monthly hot lunch days

  • Before & After School Program

  • Petits Pandas Preschool


  • Two-way transportation is provided west of Avenue H through First Bus

  • Prairie Spirit School Division

Principles of Early LearningChildren are competent and capable

•Relationships are opportunities•Conversations are deep and meaningful

•Play is purposeful learning•Environment is stimulating and dynamic

Literacy is everywhere

Math Makes Sense

Nurturing the whole child

Catholic education helps all children as they seek to reach their full potential spiritually, academically, physically, socially and emotionally.

Beyond the classroom

  • Computer lab

  • Teacher librarian

  • Physical education

Exploring and learning

Registration Procedures

  • Registration form

  • Other documents

  • Prairie Spirit instructions


École St. Gerard School

A second language is a gift we give our children!

Putting Faith in Education!

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