JM Language League Update
Fri, Apr 21 10:58am
Joaquin Miller Elementary

Hi JM Families.  Well, the results are IN, and our inaugural year of foreign language education at Joaquin Miller has been a great SUCCESS (see more details below) -- and we're now hoping to expand next year to include all 2nd to 5th graders.  BUT this depends on expanding our fundraising as well, so we are ending the year with a blitz of world food-based fundraisers. 

Here's a summary of the upcoming events:


  • Desserts From Around the World  -- Wednesday May 3rd (minimum day)
  • Cinco de Mayo Mexican Take-Home Dinner -- Friday, May 5th 
  • Pre-Ramadan Yemeni Take-Home Dinner -- Monday, May 22nd 
  • Italian Ice (Snow Cone) Day -- Friday, June 2nd 

Please watch for additional communication on each event and support them as much as possible!  If you'd like to make a direct donation (we're an approved 503(c)) or have any questions about the program, please contact Mike Petouhoff ( or Kevin Schwartz (  We're also always looking for more committee members who want to help lead and organize events!!!


Highlights of the 2016-17 pilot JM World Languages & Cultures Program:

  • 10 weeks of Spanish language instruction in the fall for all 2nd & 3rd graders (30 minutes per class, 2 classes per week)
  • 12 weeks of Mandarin language instruction in January - April for all 2nd & 3rd graders and Ms. Bin’s 4th/5th grade class (30 minutes per class, 2 classes per week)
  • Introduction of complementary online language learning applications that the students will be able to use going forward to practice what they’ve learned
  • World Cultures Festival in October that presented foods and traditions from over a dozen different world cultures and featured musical performances, including Spanish songs by our students

Overall, we are THRILLED with what we’ve been able to accomplish in this trial year.  We’ve attached some links to video clips at the bottom of this message so that you can see examples of the kids in the Mandarin classes!  We’ve worked through the usual  “pilot program” kinks and the feedback from teachers and students has been incredibly positive -- so much so, that the 4th and 5th grade teachers want to participate, giving us the potential to cover all 2nd through 5th grade classrooms starting in the fall of 2017.


Examples of kids in Mandarin classes:


JM Language League Team