Our mission at OCS is to provide high quality foreign language instruction at a developmentally critical time in a student’s language development. Greek language instruction is introduced in Kindergarten and is completed in grade 12. Greek language classes aim to help students acquire communication skills as well as academic proficiency in Greek.

Elementary School (K-5)

Foreign Language in the Elementary School (FLES) Program
FLES is an acronym that stands for Foreign Language in the Elementary School. It is an approach to language learning that allows students to develop basic communication skills in a foreign language while reinforcing and enriching content being learned in other disciplines, such as math, science, and social studies.
Odyssey Charter School’s FLES program consists of two classes per day, Greek Language and Math in Greek, taught to all students from grades K through 4, totaling approximately 90 minutes of exposure to Greek per student per day. This model supports the five goal areas of the national standards for world languages (communication, culture, connections, comparisons, and communities) and is aligned with the Delaware World-Readiness Standards for Learning Languages (2016).
The FLES program develops students’ proficiency in the Greek language through task- and project-based learning either of the Greek language specifically or of mathematics content. The goal of FLES at OCS is to develop students’ language proficiency and 21st century skills.

Why start a foreign language at the elementary level?
The FLES program at OCS provides all elementary students with language learning opportunities. Research indicates that the early study of a second language results in cognitive benefits, gains in academic achievement, and increases in self-esteem, creativity, and positive attitudes toward diversity.

Program Goals
The goals of the FLES program at OCS are:

  • To teach a foreign language at a critical age for language acquisition
  • To develop increased functional proficiency in all aspects of the Greek language with each year of study
  • To develop students’ skills in the three modes of communication: Interpretive, Presentational and Interpretive
  • To promote academic excellence by teaching students to communicate effectively in at least two languages
  • To cultivate a lifelong love for language learning
  • To help students make connections between languages
  • To build an understanding and appreciation for other cultures by developing multicultural awareness and a more global perspective
  • To prepare students to compete in the global economy
  • To give students 21st Century Skills
  • To develop increased cognitive skills

FLES Proficiency Targets
After completing the K-5 sequence, students are expected to perform at a proficiency level within the Novice-Mid to Novice-high standard of proficiency, as established by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) K-12 Proficiency Guidelines. Students at this level:

  • Engage in simple conversations, relying on memorized speech patterns
  • Talk about familiar subjects; describe surroundings and people, give time, date and weather information
  • Give opinions on things (like/don’t like)
  • Ask simple questions
  • Respond to language that they read and hear

The FLES model at OCS
At OCS we take foreign language instruction very seriously: Our Greek language/subject faculty are highly qualified teachers – with credentials from Greece and the U.S. – and the school provides them with ongoing professional development.
Our curriculum is based on (a) the Common Core State Standards in ELA and mathematics, (b) the World-Readiness Standards for Learning Languages (ACTFL), (c) the ACTFL can-do benchmarks which state the performance indicators for foreign language learners, and (d) the certification of attainment in Greek (Center for the Greek Language)

Middle School (grades 6-8)

In Middle School, the Greek Language program at OCS builds on the FLES program. In particular, in grade 6 the school offers 5 hours of Greek language instruction per week and a class on Greek visual arts. This course enriches the cultural aspect of the Greek language program by involving students in creative projects, which are related to Greek history, culture and arts.

In grades 7 and 8, the Greek program focuses on developing students’ academic language and on their ability to communicate in speaking and writing, both fluently and accurately. In these grades, the language program is further reinforced with a Greek Exploratory class. This is a course on Greek Mythology, which combines English Language Arts, through the reading of stories, with the visual arts. The aim of the course is to enrich students’ knowledge of Greek Mythology and discuss the influence of those myths on contemporary society.
By the end of grade 8, students are expected to reach a level of intermediate mid to intermediate high, as established by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) K-12 Proficiency Guidelines. Students at this level:

  • spontaneously access vocabulary to speak about familiar and occasionally unfamiliar subjects
  • speak confidently about present time actions and other time frames
  • describe, explain and compare
  • ask pointed, relevant questions
  • confidently apply circumlocution strategies

In Middle School, students may also elect to participate in the Ellinomatheia exams, the official Greek proficiency exam used by the Greek Ministry of Education and recognized throughout Europe, in order to attain certification for their level of Greek. The school is a center for the Ellinomatheia exams and provides further support to those students by organizing extra language classes at no cost to families.

High School (grades 9-12)

The Greek Language Program
In the High School, the Greek Language program at OCS is fully aligned with the standards and curricular approach recommended by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). Greek language curriculum is in place for both newly enrolled and continuing OCS students. In accordance with the ACTFL standards, our goal is for all 12th grade continuing OCS students to attain the Intermediate-High level to Advance-Mid of Greek language proficiency. These proficiency levels are equivalent to the B1 and B2 levels of certification, which can be earned by passing the Ellinomatheia exams. The certificates can later be applied towards college credits. Additionally, students who have attained either of these certificates in Greek language will be eligible to apply for a State of Delaware Certificate of Multiliteracy.
9th grade continuing OCS students who have earned a passing score on the Greek Language proficiency exam will enroll in Greek Studies coursework, and will also have the option of enrolling in Accelerated Greek language courses (there are four levels), The Dual Language course (Greek and English) or another foreign language through electives. 12th grade students at an advanced level of Greek and with an interest in researching a specific subject matter will also have the opportunity to undertake an Independent Study course with a member of the Greek Faculty.
Odyssey Charter School requires successful completion of three credits of Greek Language/Greek Studies for graduation. For students first entering OCS at the school level, at least two of those credits must be earned in Greek Language courses. Greek Language acquisition is an integral part of Odyssey Charter School’s mission. All students attending OCS High School must comply with these language requirements. Please note that Greek Language and Greek Studies coursework is academically rigorous and demanding. It is vital that incoming students understand and readily accept these conditions and requirements. Commitment by student and family is critical to successful completion of Greek Language and Greek Studies courses and credits.
While Greek language acquisition is the paramount objective of the Greek Language courses, students will also gain insight into Greek culture, Greek history, and the foundations of Hellenism. These courses embody one of the primary missions of Odyssey Charter High School: the employment of foreign language attainment as the vehicle for engagement in classical education.

Greek Studies: Connecting the dots between Ancient Greece and modern culture
The three levels of Greek Studies courses (each with their own area of focus) are designed to weave together the strands of Greek history, literature, culture and other areas of the humanities, as well as exploring Greece’s contributions to world civilization in various spheres, such as mathematics, science, philosophy and politics which have been touched upon thematically in grades K-8.
With their participation in these courses, students will have the opportunity to learn about Greek culture and identity from the ancient period to the present day. This knowledge is presented in a living, breathing context, the better to gain insight not only into Greece and the Greeks, but also into our shared and unique cultural identities.

The Greek Program Beyond the School Setting