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Exploring World Languages and Cultures
Bridges: Children, Languages, World World is a project that offers exploratory language and culture classes to young learners in the greater Bloomington, Indiana area. Knowing that learning world language at an early age enhances linguistic ability overall, the central goal of Bridges is to ignite interest in learning about different languages and cultures and inspire children to pursue both with excitement and enthusiasm all their lives.
Bridges emphasizes Less-Commonly Taught Languages (LCTL), many of which have been identified as Critical Needs Languages by the U.S. State Department. The teaching approach used by instructors is the communicative method, which means fun for kids through games, stories, free play, crafts, puppet shows, and other interactive activities to help children acquire new vocabulary in the target language.
Bridges language programs are taught by IU students who are studying LCTLs. In partnership with IU Bloomington's School of Education faculty from the Department of Literacy, Culture and Language Education, they are taught valuable teaching tools which may be applied in a variety of community settings.
Currently, Bridges programs take place throughout Bloomington, with partner sites such as the public library, daycare centers, elementary schools, and neighborhood learning centers. This mutually beneficial relationship among university and non-university partners allows Bridges to offer quality world instruction to children and parents of Monroe County, IN.
Click here for newsletters, publications, and online postings of Bridges program information.