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Italian Language Students Visit the Kindergarten Center

The high school students asked the kindergartners to come hold the alphabet signs with them.

Antonella Tranchina

The high school students asked the kindergartners to come hold the alphabet signs with them.

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Italian Teacher Antonella Tranchina’s ninth grade Italian Honors class went to the Kindergarten Center on Thursday, March 29. Thirteen students went on the trip. The students read a book that Gabrielle Grillo made for class titled Cosa Stanno Fa which means What Are They Doing?

After each page, the kindergartners would be asked what room of the house they thought the family member in the picture was in. Then, in Italian, the class sang three well-known children’s songs to the kindergartners. The students sang the songs “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes,” the alphabet, and “If You’re Happy and You Know It.” For the alphabet song, all the students had written and colored in the letters of the Italian alphabet. The class sang the song twice. The second time, the students invited some of the kindergartners to join and hold up the letters. Many students gladly went up. For “If You’re Happy and You Know It,” the kindergartners and high school students stood in a large circle. The kindergartners caught on fast and knew what song the high school students were singing.

Nathan Gagliardo, a freshman, says, “My favorite part was singing ‘Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes.’ I got to help teach the kids what each word meant. I loved seeing how interested they were. I loved seeing how they enjoyed it.”

Natalia Leszczak, a freshman, said, “I think that the trip was important so that the young kids start learning a language early. They have some exposure, so it will make learning a new language easier in the long run.” Leszczak said that her favorite part of the trip was to be able to see the kids interact with each other. “It was nice to see them enjoy the trip and to hear them engage in the language,” she added.

Erica Cimato, a freshman, said, “My favorite part was getting to interact with the little kids. It was a fun experience to be able to teach the children about the Italian language was a very fun and exciting experience.” Cimato said that the trip was important because little children need to learn about different cultures.

Leonardo Sola, a freshman, said, “I think the trip was important because not only did it teach the kids about the Italian language and culture, it got them excited to learn about new things.” Sola’s favorite part was being one of the readers of the book.

Matt Skolnick, a freshman, said “My favorite part of the trip was seeing all of the children so happy to be learning. I liked being there because it reminded me of when I was a young kid.” Skolnick thinks that the trip was important to teach the young kids about Italy.

“I planned this trip because I wanted to give my high school students the opportunity to experience something different, to be the teacher for the day, to take on the roll of the leader, and to share the beauty of learning another language with the kindergartners,” said Tranchina. When asked why it was important for the high school kids to be like teachers for a day she added, “I want them to be able to show how they are independent. I wanted to give them the opportunity to see that they can do this on their own.” Tranchina said that the trip was very successful: “The kindergartners enjoyed listening to the book, and they were answering questions, which showed they were paying attention.”

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Italian Language Students Visit the Kindergarten Center