World Language Department


Coming soon


Coming soon

Course Offerings

Below are the detailed descriptions of the world language courses being offered for the 2022-2023. Refer to the course offerings page for an overview of which courses are available for each grade level.

415 Spanish I
1.0 credit Required

Spanish I introduces the student to spoken and written Spanish as well as to the many cultures of the Spanish speaking world. A basic vocabulary of 1200-1500 words is used. The emphasis in the first year is on comprehension, speech, written communication and culture.

Text: ¡Exprésate! Level I. Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 2006. (ISBN 10: 0-03-067678-9; ISBN 13: 978-0-030-67678-9). Additional practice and activity worksheets are provided.

425 Spanish II
1.0 credit Elective
Prerequisite: Grade of B or better in Spanish I (415) or Teacher Approval

Spanish II continues to develop the necessary skills in reading, conversation, writing and listening. Lessons are taught primarily in Spanish. Students learn about various cultures of people who speak Spanish, focusing on Mexico, Spain and the United States. Spanish students are encouraged to be sensitive to differences in how people think, live and behave. Audio/Visual materials are used.

Text: ¡Exprésate! Level II. Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 2006. (ISBN 10: 0-03-071271-8; ISBN 13: 978-0-03-071271-5). Additional practice and activity worksheets are provided.

430 Spanish Heritage
1.0 credit
Prerequisite: Teacher Approval

The Spanish Heritage course is intended for Spanish Heritance speakers (SHS), who can write and speak Spanish and for those students  who have are fluent in Spanish and have interest on Hispanic culture without being SHS. 

This course consists of 6 units where we will cover different topics, all of them related with Hispanic culture. This  units consists of “Practical work" as creation of speeches in Spanish, essays, cultural expressions as drama in addition  to the creation of a digital magazine.

Text: La casa de los espíritus by Isabel Allende, Yo no soy tu perfecta hija mexicana by Erica L. Sánchez, Antropología de la poesía latinoamericana contemporánea by Piedad Bonnett, El español de los Estados Unidos by Anna María Escobar y Kim Potowski.

435 Spanish III 
1.0 credit Elective
Prerequisite: Grade of B in Spanish II (425) or Teacher Approval

Spanish III is designed for students who have successfully completed Level II Spanish. Students continue to advance their skills by more interactively using their grammar, writing, comprehension, and speaking skills. Less emphasis is placed on using the assigned text in place of using skills previously learned in more spontaneous ways such as daily conversation, free form writing and direct application of the language. Outside resources are utilized such as web-based exercises, voice recording software and cultural awareness via the study of Spanish songs and contemporary artists.

Text: ¡Exprésate! Level III. Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 2006. (ISBN: 0-03-071272-6). Additional practice and activity worksheets are provided.

445 Spanish IV
1.0 credit Elective
Prerequisite: Grade of B in Spanish III (435) or Teacher Approval

Spanish IV is a fast-paced course focusing on necessary pre-AP skill sets for students who have successfully completed Spanish III. Major emphasis is placed on developing comprehension, refining writing skills, reviewing previously acquired grammatical concepts, and introducing new, more complex structures. Reading includes excerpts from Spanish literature.

Text:  Nuevas Vistas. Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 2003. (ISBN: 0-03-055213-3). Additional practice and activity worksheets are provided.

418 French I
1.0 credit Required

Students are introduced to the basic skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing in French. The course includes basic situations of traveling, asking directions, ordering, and talking about yourself as well as learning about French speaking cultures. Paris is the cultural focus. Students are expected to learn cultural differences and similarities and an appreciation for another culture as well as their own.

Text: T’es branché? 1st Edition. EMC Publishing, 2019. (ISBN: 978-1-53381-628-3)

428 French II
1.0 credit Elective
Prerequisite: Grade of B in French I (418) or Teacher Approval

French II builds on the skills of speaking, listening, reading, and writing from level I. There is an emphasis on verbs, past and present tenses. Lessons are taught primarily in French. Students learn some history and culture of French speaking countries and comparisons with their own culture. Everyday vocabulary and situations are the basis for verbal interaction.

Text: T’es branché? 2nd Edition. EMC Publishing, 2019. (ISBN: 978-1-53381-629-0)

438 French III
1.0 credit Elective
Prerequisite: Grade of B in French II (428) or Teacher Approval

French III continues developing reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Emphasis is on oral communication as well as vocabulary and grammar development through various activities and texts. Contemporary issues, art, history, and music will be explored by class interests. More complex grammar structures are introduced.

Text: Discovering French, Level III. McDougal Littell, 2004. (ISBN 10: 0-395-87486-6; ISBN 13: 978-0-395-87486-8)

448 French IV
1.0 credit Elective
Prerequisite: Grade of B in French III (438) or Teacher Approval

French IV continues developing reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Emphasis is on oral communication as well as vocabulary and grammar development through various activities and texts. Contemporary issues, art, history, and music will be explored by class interests. Grammar structures will be reinforced and built upon. Students will read Le Petit Prince.

Text: Additional college level texts and resources are provided.


Mrs. Svitlana Benson

Department Chair

My name is Svitlana Zorya-Benson. I was born in Kyiv, Ukraine, and I have been living in our beautiful state of Colorado for 25 years. It is my home now, yet, I hurt deeply from what is happening now in my home country of Ukraine…

I remember how much I was fascinated by the English language in my childhood and teen years. Of course, I could not understand when I was listening to songs or stories, but the beauty of how it sounded and mystery of the meaning made me strive to keep learning and inspired me to get better. As the years passed, my love for English somehow transferred to a new fascination with Spanish. Learning English and Spanish for me, I believe, is my life journey.

I received my bachelor of arts degree in Spanish in 2013 from UCCS, and I have been teaching Spanish for 10 years now. I am privileged to teach at St. Mary’s Catholic High School. We have amazing students and teaching/administrative staff at this wonderful school.

2022-2023 courses: Spanish I, Spanish II, Russian Culture


Mrs. Katherinne Balboa

My name is Katherinne Balboa Oviedo, and I was born in Santiago de Chile. I graduated as a Spanish Teacher (Profesora de Castellano) in 2007. In conjunction, I did a diploma course in Latin America Literature, and in 2013, I completed a Masters in Education. I started as a high school teacher when I was 22 years old, and it was a beautiful experience that I will always remember. Most of my working experience dates back from Chile where I worked as a Spanish teacher for over 7 years. I have been lucky enough to work with kids from elementary all the way to being a college professor. In the US, my focus has been students who are Spanish heritage speakers where I’ve worked with students online and in person. In 2019, I completed my second Masters, this time in the field of teaching Spanish as a foreign language at the Barcelona University. The same year, I traveled to Spain to a conference of Spanish teachers. This was a great experience, and since then, I continue to develop my skills by attending courses and seminars focused on teaching Spanish.

I started working at St. Mary’s in 2021 as a Spanish teacher for levels 2, 3 and 4. In 2022-2023, I will start a new class focused on Spanish heritage speakers. I like my classes to be as dynamic as possible, and I’m always looking for new ways to teach this beautiful language. I think that the students will reach their learning objectives faster and more easily if they enjoy the classes. My main goal is for them to feel confident when they communicate in Spanish.

Besides being a teacher, I’m a very lucky mother of two kids, Fernando (9) and Violeta (6). Additionally, my husband has been my support since we moved to the US. We are a family of 6 as we have two pups (Nala and Almendra). We love to hike and discover new places in Colorado together.

I love hikes, yoga, aerial hoop, dance, travel, skating with my family (no, the pets cannot skate… yet) and spending time with friends having a good conversation while we enjoy a good coffee.

2022-2023 courses: Spanish III, Spanish IV/V, Spanish Heritage

Tiffany Jolicoeur

Tiffany Jolicoeur is a native of Wisconsin, but has lived in Colorado Springs for 17 years. She lives with her husband Mark, her daughter Sophie, and her son Adam, who is a Junior at Saint Mary's this year. She received her BA in French and Music from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has traveled to France several times. She enjoys attending her children's sporting events and playing the piano. In recent years, she has composed, recorded, and published a few piano books through the CCC Music Company. 

2022-2023 courses: French I-IV