Students in Erika Delgado’s Spanish class hopped on an airplane, visited a beach in Chile, and arrived back in Centennial within an hour. The trip …
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Students in Erika Delgado’s Spanish class hopped on an airplane,
visited a beach in Chile, and arrived back in Centennial within an
The trip was made possible by one of the interactive whiteboards
used at Global Kidz Lab, a foreign language center for children
ages 1 to 12. Using 21st-century technology such as iPads,
smartboards and handheld video cameras, the lab’s instructors keep
children engaged as they learn Mandarin Chinese, Spanish or
“The end result is the kids are having so much fun they’re not
really realizing they’re learning,” said Jen Sorge, who founded
Global Kidz Lab with her husband Bryan in September. “I’m amazed.
It’s really propelled the learning to a whole new level.”
The Sorges have a background in international business and are
Faced with year after year of budget cuts, many school districts
nationwide have reduced their foreign language offerings. The
programs that still exist don’t usually begin until middle or high
school. The lab instead focuses on younger children because that’s
when second languages are best retained, Sorge said, and being
bilingual is increasingly important as technology continues to
shrink the world.
“The ability for kids to be able to compete in a global economy
really does require fluency in a second language,” Sorge said.
The lab utilizes an immersive and contemporary approach. Rather
than flash cards and textbooks, teachers use the available
technology to take virtual trips, play games and keep children
engaged. Not a word of English is spoken during any of the one-hour
“Everything that I teach them during a lesson … I explain it to
them in Spanish through movement, through songs,” Delgado said.
The lab’s main goal is to make students conversationally fluent.
There’s also an emphasis placed on culture. To survive in an
international business world, travelers need to understand the
countries and people with which they’re dealing.
“Our philosophy is language without culture is like cereal
without milk,” Sorge said.
Most of the lab’s 60 students are enrolled in Mandarin Chinese
classes, as it’s the next big global language, Sorge said. Spanish
is offered both because of its growing importance in the American
business world and the number of countries in which it’s spoken.
French is the only other language currently taught, but more likely
will be added in the future.
Students are split up into four age groups. Classes for 1- to
3-year-olds allow parents to participate and are available in the
mornings, along with those for preschoolers. After-school programs
are offered for 6- to 8-year-olds and 9- to 12-year olds. Prices
range from $115 to $130 a month. Global Kidz Lab is at 7323 S.
Alton Way, Suite B, in Centennial. Interested individuals can visit
www.GlobalKidzLab.com for more information.
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