Students at Spicewood Elementary School are showcasing their diverse cultures as part of a student-driven project in the campus’ new Inquiry Lab.
To highlight the variety of languages and cultures celebrated at Spicewood, fourth-grade students chose to produce “Mother Tongue” recordings to broadcast in the school news. Each recording features one student who speaks in both English and a second language and shares their story of their experience with a second language and culture.
“We promote international-mindedness and we want our students to value who we are and where they come from,” Spicewood Principal Jiae Kim said. “Sharing our cultures brings in more open-mindedness and tolerance for other cultures and just makes us more well-rounded global citizens.”
Spicewood received a $50,000 Tier I Innovative School Grant from Round Rock ISD to create the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP) Inquiry Lab, which created a flexible learning space on campus that fosters creativity and innovation.
“Being an IB school, learning different languages is very important,” said Sophia Stone, Spicewood fourth-grade student who speaks both English and Spanish. “It’s good to know different cultures because you learn about different languages and people and it helps you.”
During the latest “Mother Tongue” recording, fourth-grade student Luca Suliin shared his story of learning English, French and Spanish with the help of classmates Sophia and Maggie Lee. While Spicewood IB PYP Coordinator Jessica Vance facilitates the recording using an iPad and green screen, all directions and questions are asked by fellow students.
“Sharing our stories with ‘Mother Tongue’ is special because if we didn’t have different languages, we would all be the same,” Luca said. “Spicewood puts a lot of effort into making sure we know who we are and show our different cultures.”