- Spanish Immersion
- Outdoor Education at Ingram Pond
- International Baccalaureate
- Dual Enrollment
Spanish Immersion Program
Delaware and Languages
The Governor's World Language Expansion Initiative proposes an aggressive world language education plan that prepares Indian River School District students with the language skills to compete in an ever-changing global economy at home and around the world. In essence, Indian River will begin to graduate globally-competent students with advanced-level proficiency in languages, giving them an economic advantage in the multilingual and multicultural workforce of the 21st century.
Why Spanish Immersion?
Why Spanish Immersion? More than forty years of research consistently documents the power of immersion education to help students attain high levels of world language proficiency. No other type of instruction, short of living in a non-English-speaking environment, is as successful. Young children especially thrive in this type of learning environment where learning a new language comes as naturally as learning their first one. World language immersion programs are also the least expensive way for schools and district to deliver high quality world language learning opportunities to their students. The Spanish Immersion Program curriculum model engages students in two different languages throughout their elementary school learning experience: English and Spanish.
World Language Immersion Programs offer a robust bilingual experience for young learners at the point in their cognitive development that is perfect for the acquisition of a new language. Students benefit from the instruction of two highly-qualified classroom teachers—one who will teach them for half of the day in English and the other for half of the day in the Spanish language.
The English-speaking teacher will teach English Language Arts as well as select elements of science and social studies from the Delaware Recommended Curriculum and select elements of mathematics from the Common Core State Standards. The Immersion-language teacher will teach Language Arts for the immersion language, mathematics based on the Common Core State Standards, science and portions of the social studies curriculum. World Language Immersion students follow the same standards-based curriculum in all content areas that non-immersion students would follow in any other Delaware elementary classroom.
Elementary World Language Immersion Programs have identified an uninterrupted K-12 Immersion pathway for students to continuously build toward advanced-level language proficiency. In the middle school, students will have a hybrid, online world language learning experience with Immersion language-speaking peers. In high school, immersion students will be able to take the AP Spanish course in 9th grade and then participate in dual-enrollment or dual-credit courses with local universities.
- World Language Proficiency Students achieve high levels of world language proficiency in the immersion language. By enrolling in a Delaware World Language Immersion program, students are on a pathway to read, write, speak, and listen in another language at high intermediate proficiency level by the ninth grade when they take Advanced Placement language and its corresponding AP test. By continuing study of the same language in high school, they can achieve advanced language proficiency skills and possibly earn credit towards a language minor at Delaware colleges and universities.
- Improved Test Performance Research shows that immersion students perform as well or better than their non-immersion peers on standardized tests of English and mathematics, even when these assessments are delivered in English.
- Enhanced Cognitive Skills Immersion students develop greater cognitive flexibility, demonstrating increased attention control, better memory and superior problem-solving skills, as well as an enhanced understanding of their first language.
- Increased Cultural Sensitivity Immersion students are much more aware of and show a more positive attitude towards different cultures and an appreciation of people who have different cultural perspectives and practices.
- Long-Term Benefits Immersion students are better prepared for the global community and job markets where world language skills provide them with an economic advantage. Professionals such as those in medicine, international trade, pharmaceuticals, the oil and gas industry, power industry, luxury good and other transportation technologies encompass extensive multilingual networks locally and around the world. As business relationships deepen between Delaware and other countries, having skills to communicate in Spanish will be an invaluable economic advantage.
- Maximize students’ proficiency in a world language in order for them to develop advanced-level language skills in secondary school
- Provide a rich academic environment in both the English and Immersion-language classrooms
- Develop students’ abilities to work successfully in multiple cultural settings
- Offer a rich, culturally-diverse experience for the entire school community
Who Can Participate?
The Spanish Immersion Program is open to all students of varying backgrounds and abilities. Applications are available for those students who wish to attend John. M. Clayton Elementary and East Millsboro Elementary. Transportation is not provided to those students who are granted school choice.
- Commit to long-term participation in the immersion program so that your child can develop advanced-level language skills
- Develop an understanding of immersion education
- Read with your child in English 20-30 minutes daily
- Encourage the use of the immersion language outside of school
- Encourage community support
- Enjoy the challenges and celebrate the results
How to Enroll?
For information about enrolling your child in one of the Delaware World Language Immersion Programs, contact a participating school. Each school’s information is located below.
John M. Clayton Elementary School, (302) 732-3808, Frankford, Delaware 19945
East Millsboro Elementary, (302) 934-3222, Millsboro, Delaware 19966
North Georgetown Elementary, (302) 855-2430, Georgetown, Delaware 19947
ExCEL (Exceptional, Cognitive, Enrichment Learning)
ExCEL is an enrichment program for students in grades 4 and 5 who demonstrate, or who have the potential to demonstrate, superior intellectual abilities and academic aptitudes. The program provides a differentiated educational program in the area of general intellectual ability. Participating students engage in small group instruction provided in resource rooms within the school. This arrangement provides horizontal enrichment opportunities to foster the development of higher mental processes, independent study, and problem solving. Concurrent with program operation, program staff members develop curriculum so that a sequential plan evolves.
Definition of Gifted and Talented
Based on the definition accepted by the Department of Education and developed by the curriculum committee of the National Association of Secondary School Principals:
“Gifted and Talented Children, identified by professionally qualified persons, are those who by virtue of outstanding abilities are capable of high performance. The require differentiated educational programs and/or services beyond those normally provided by the regular school program in order to realize their contribution to self and society”.
(The preceding definition is comparable with the standard reference to gifted or talented persons contained in 3103 (3) of Title 14, Delaware Code).
ExCEL Program Goals
The ExCEL program has been designed....
- To provide an opportunity which will enable the student to maximize his/her superior intellectual abilities and/or academic aptitudes.
- To provide an environment which will enable the student to develop his/her potential, particularly in critical and creative thinking and problem solving.
- To provide an atmosphere which will enable the student to develop independent goals and to assume responsibility for meeting those goals.
- To provide activities which will enable the student to gain greater self-expression, self-investigation, and self-knowledge.
- To provide experiences which will enable the student to develop a sense of responsibility toward mankind.
- To provide a divergent curriculum which will enable the student to apply decision-making skills to current and future issues.
Given the prescribed ExCEL environment, opportunities, and curriculum, the student will....
- Involve himself/herself in activities which require interpretation, application, critical thinking (analysis and synthesis), and evaluation.
- Continue to develop special interests and aptitudes.
- Work cooperatively in group discussions and activities.
- Engage in independent study and projects which incorporate criterion-based evaluations.
- Develop greater facility in planning and conducting research.
- Use varied forms of expression to communicate ideas.
- Increase individual responsibility for independent learning and social interaction.
Who's Who in ExCEL
Your teachers are for 2022-2023 are:
Dawn Keenan: LN, PS, EM and SDSA, dawn.Keenan@irsd.k12.de.us
: JMC, NG, GE and LB,
Please contact your child's ExCEL teacher for information specific to his/hers school specific information. For general questions about the ExCEL program, please contact Kelly Dorman, Director of Elementary Education, at email@example.com
Outdoor Education at Ingram Pond
The Indian River School District's Outdoor Education Center at Ingram Pond takes district students outside to provide a learning environment where change is constant and learning never stops! The environmental facility provides students with an exemplary STEM program offering a field context for developing 21st century skills, such as critical thinking, problem solving, and information literacy.
IRSD Outdoor Education Center at Ingram Pond
24184 Godwin School Rd.
Millsboro, DE 19966
- 5th grade programs
- 6th grade programs
- 8th grade program
- Coming prepared for your science extension
- Parent Release Forms
Pond Food Webs
Students embark on an exploration of the Ingram Pond ecosystem. Donning hip boots and carrying dip-nets, fifth graders stroll the pond edge collecting organisms such as crayfish, grass shrimp, small fish, and hatchling turtles. Bringing their samples back to the Fish House, students build food chains and webs analyzing the interdependent relationships between organisms.
Students utilize model ponds to obtain information as to the effects of pollution on the pond ecosystem. Students analyze sources of pollution and discuss their prevention.
Sixth Grade students will participate in two programs while visiting Ingram Pond:
- Students will build bottle rockets and launch them to investigate the relationship between mass, force and motion.
- Students will investigate Newton's Laws as they apply to canoeing to gain an understanding of reaction forces, reference frames, and net forces
Ecosystem Scavenger Hunt
Students embark on an exploration of the Ingram Pond ecosystem by canoe. While canoeing students collect names of species they identify through the use of specialist prepared resource rings. Students observe and identify interdependent and dependent relationships existing in the pond ecosystem, focusing on the transfer and transformation of energy within. Returning to the classroom, students enter collected data into an energy pyramid identifying autotrophs and heterotrophs again focusing on the transfer and transformation of energy with the pond ecosystem.
Upon donning hip and chest waders, students enter the pond ecosystem to collect macro-invertebrates and fish for laboratory study. Returning to the Fish House, students classify their organisms, identifying the structure/function relationships of their adaptations. Students compare the structures of a bony fish to that of a cartilage fish; the dogfish shark. Students proceed to dissect a preserved shark specimen analyzing the internal systems and the role they play in species survival.
- Students will build bottle rockets and launch them to investigate the relationship between mass, force and motion.
- Students will investigate Newton's Laws as they apply to canoeing to gain an understanding of reaction forces, reference frames, and net forces.
Outdoor Dress For All
All activities are outdoors, so please dress appropriately for the weather forecast of the day.
Students should prepare for inclement weather for their science extension at Ingram Pond. It is typically windy here and an extra layer of clothing is always a great idea. If students have a water repellent jacket available, this would benefit them immensely in the event of rain.
By the end of October through the end of April, students should bring gloves and hats, as well.
Middle School Canoeing
Middle level students may also want to bring a change of clothing in case they become wet at the pond.
Students should pack a healthy lunch to enjoy while at the pond. We are a gum-free zone as our animal friends suffer from discarded gum products.
Parents are always welcome at Ingram Pond. Please feel free to join your students for a fun-filled family science day here at the pond. Contact your child's teacher for inclusion as a chaperone for the day.
Offered at Sussex Central High School, this internationally recognized curriculum requires 11th and 12th grade students to take and test in six subjects over a two year period while also completing core classes in reasoning, extended essay and “Creativity, Action and Service.” Sussex Central is one of only three Delaware high schools to offer an IB diploma, which provides students with college credit, recruitment by top colleges and greater opportunities for grants and loans.
More information about IB at Sussex Central High School can be found by clicking the following link: International Baccalaureate
Through special partnerships with the University of Delaware and Delaware Technical and Community College, 12th grade students at Indian River High School are completing college level coursework prior to graduation. Students are completing the University of Delaware’s E110 course, which is a requirement for all freshman college students. The three credit hour course teaches the writing and research skills that students will utilize throughout their college careers. The program introduces students to college level course work, provides them with the writing and research skills needed to be successful in college and gives them college credit at the time of their high school graduation. The partnership with Del Tech gives students the opportunity to complete courses in sociology and anatomy and physiology. Students in the program are dually enrolled in both Indian River High School and either UD or DelTech.