Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Go to Selected Program Area
Massachusetts State Seal
Students & Families Educators & Administrators Teaching, Learning & Testing Data & Accountability Finance & Funding About the Department Education Board  

Archived Information

World Languages
Curriculum Framework
Making Connections

World Languages Content

Communicating Strand

Lifelong learners communicate in at least one language in addition to English.

Learning Standards

Through conversing, reading, writing, listening, viewing, and presenting, students will...

  1. greet and respond to greetings
  2. introduce and respond to introductions
  3. ask and answer questions
  4. make and respond to requests
  5. express likes, dislikes, and feelings
  6. express needs
  7. express agreement and disagreement
  8. follow directions
  9. provide and obtain information and knowledge
  10. obtain new information and knowledge
  11. describe, compare, and contrast
  12. explain, interpret
  13. narrate
  14. solve problems
  15. read and discuss authentic literature

Culture Strand

Lifelong learners use language to gain understanding of peoples and cultures.

Learning Standards

Through conversing, reading, writing, listening, viewing, and presenting, students will...

  • identify cultural and linguistic characteristics
  • compare and contrast cultural and linguistic characteristics, identifying similarities and differences
  • react appropriately in a social situation
  • examine and analyze cultural contributions of diverse groups
  • Connecting Strand

    Lifelong learners use language to acquire new information and knowledge in other disciplines.

    Learning Standards

    Through conversing, reading, writing, listening, viewing, and presenting, students will...

  • use a world language to connect with other disciplines such as Arts, English Language Arts, Comprehensive Health, Science, Technology and Mathematics, Social Studies

  • Participating Strand

    Lifelong learners use language to participate in local and international communities.

    Learning Standards

    Through conversing, reading, writing, listening, viewing, and presenting, students will...

    1. participate in community activities
    2. identify careers where knowing more than one language is useful

    In this framework, World Languages Content is represented by Strands, Learning Standards, and Age Appropriate Topics in Strand 1.

    Strands describe the content and skills that are woven through the student's experiences with the discipline. World Languages' four strands are part of an integrated whole and cannot be learned or taught in isolation from each other.

    Learning Standards describe what students are expected to have learned by the end of grades four, eight, ten, and twelve in grade spans PreK-4, 5-8, 9-10, and 11-12. The Massachusetts Learning Standards have been designed with three purposes in mind:

    • To acknowledge the importance of both the content and skills that students learn in each discipline;
    • To help teachers create meaningful curriculum and classroom assessments;
    • To be used as the basis for a statewide assessment of student learning at grades 4, 8, & 10.

    Students may require support or adaptations to achieve these standards, and teachers and families are urged to consult and apply the "Strategies of Including All Learners" listed in Chapter Two, Charting the Course: The Massachusetts Curriculum Framework, "Lifelong Learning, Teaching, and Assessment."

    The Learning Standards are also applicable to the thousands of adult learners enrolled in adult basic education centers throughout Massachusetts. Adult educators are strongly encouraged to implement and adapt them according to the literacy and experiential levels of their students.

    Examples and How it Looks in the Classroom suggest learning and teaching experiences including extended projects and units.

    How to use the standards in programs which are not yet K-12:

    The learning standards for World Languages depict a progression through the ideal program described in the Guiding Principles of this framework, namely a continuous sequence of study of one language from PreK through grade twelve and beyond. Until such programs are in place, districts can use these standards to set expectations for student learning in existing programs, while they build toward the kind of program envisioned in this framework.

    Entry points in a given language sequence will always vary (e.g., there will be those students who study more than one language, beginning one in later grades, or those who transfer from other systems with different language backgrounds). It is up to individual districts to make adjustments in the use of these content standards by adjusting the content, context, and learning examples to age-appropriate settings.

    It is important to note that a four- or five-year sequence may not allow all students to achieve the standard set forth in the Common Core of Learning, that all students should be able to read, write, and converse in another language by the time they graduate. Such proficiency comes in Stages 3 and 4 of the learning standards and requires a longer sequence of study and more contact hours than the three to four year program with 45 minute daily classes provides.

    Last Updated: January 1, 1996
    E-mail this page| Print View| Print Pdf  
    Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Search · A-Z Site Index · Policies · Site Info · Contact DESE