Foreign languages foreign no longer


Photo-illustration by Logan Flake

Junior Abby Sullivan chucks her Spanish textbook into the trash in a picture she posted on Instagram.

Haley Miller, Reporter


Junior Katelyn Ridge, being in third year Spanish, says that although she has never actually spoken to a native Spanish speaker, she is practically fluent in the language. According to Ridge, she received a B- in second year Spanish, granting her the “special gift” of bilingualism.

“I mean, I even started writing my Instagram captions with Shakira song lyrics,” Ridge said. “Just send me to Mexico already.”

Many SHS students in a foreign language level three or higher have claimed to be well versed in that language. Parents of these students say that their children’s behavior at home has changed as well.

Tara Wilkes, parent of senior French five student, Liza Wilkes, says that Liza has recently gained an interest in the French culture. According to Tara, her daughter started adapting “somewhat pointless” French words into most conversations.

“It’s getting out of hand,” Tara said. “I can’t say anything without receiving, ‘Hon, hon, hon, un baguette,’ in return.”

The hardest part of many foreign language classes, Ridge says, is dealing with teachers who say she isn’t fluent yet. According to her, she became “deeply depressed” and “lost touch with the Mexican culture” after her Spanish teacher questioned her use of pronouns.

Spanish teacher Ally Hastings says that although students are advancing, they haven’t grasped the use of slang. She says her students become immediately confused and “lose sense of real life” when she adds an idiom or slang to the vocabulary list.

“They’re definitely not fluent yet,” Hastings said. “Every time I teach them an idiom, they start shivering and trembling. One time a girl burst into tears. The guy next to her would’ve helped, but he fainted before he got the chance.”