Immersion Elementary

Program Goals

  • To develop high levels of proficiency in the native language, and in a second language through content instruction.
  • To develop high levels of literacy in Spanish and English.
  • To promote high academic achievement in the content areas in both languages.
  • To develop cross-cultural competence.

Instructional Time

Students receive over 13 hours of instruction in Spanish weekly.

Immersion Teachers

The Immersion program requires that Immersion teachers hold a Virginia teacher’s license in elementary education.


The Immersion program follows the Arlington Immersion curriculum framework   (en español) which is aligned with national and state standards. The expectations for students completing the K-5 sequence are to attain the within the range of Novice High to Intermediate Low, based on the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages performance guidelines. At these levels, the student can maintain simple sentence-level conversations, may attempt longer, more complex sentences, has basic vocabulary pertaining to personal interests and academic subjects and seldom has comprehension problems on everyday topics, among other skills.

Instructional Materials

All students in the Immersion program have access to high-quality instructional materials to help them develop the desired proficiency. Arlington utilizes the Lectura series of materials. This series is standards-based and allows for cross-curricular connections.


Immersion teachers conduct periodic formative evaluations to determine students’ progress in Spanish. The results of these assessments are used to modify instruction. Students’ language development is assessed more formally twice a year, at the end of each semester, and a report is sent home with the second and fourth report card.

After elementary school, the Immersion Program continues at Gunston Middle School and, from there, at Wakefield High School.