TCF Supports Turkish Language Education in the U.S. Billings Middle School

Image In 2012, TCF awarded a grant to Billings Middle School in Seattle, WA to support a pilot year of teaching Turkish as a foreign language. The project was spearheaded by Rebecca Timson, Dean of Faculty of the school and an alumnus (2007) of the TCF Teacher Study Tours to Turkey.

After a succesful completion of the pilot year in which sixteen 8th grade students took the class or participated in conversation classes, the school decided to contiue offering Turkish in the 2013-14 academic year, in addition to Spanish. Currently, fourteen students are enrolled in the year-long class and more are anticipated to join for the conversational class next semester.

According to Ted Kalmus, Head of the School, "Turkish language has been a tremendous addition to the Billings Middle School program. It has broadened the scope of our Global Studies program in significant ways, building on a curriculum that emphasizes global case studies for understanding across disciplines." Selma Nadir, who teaches the class opined that Turkish went beyond a language course and became "a focus group for sharing Turkish culture with the rest of the school."

Sarah Pogson, one of the students who took the Turkish class in its pilot year said: "I was the first one to sign up, and I helped spread the word about why it was such a good idea to accept the challenge of trying something new. We learned so much about Turkish history and culture, which shifted our perspectives about Turkey and its role in the world. Indira Rampersad, one of the students in this year's class added: "Turkish is my favorite class this year, partly because I am interested in language and cultural studies. I am very excited about the possibility that I will go to Turkey this year and be able to speak with the people we meet. I've realized this year how important it is to learn more than one or two languages."
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07