International School of Arizona
International School of Arizona

Trilingual Cartoon Movie Produced by First Grade Students

First grade students at the International School of Arizona (ISA), a full language-immersion Primary and Middle school, proudly produced a trilingual cartoon movie while practicing and demonstrating competence in several key areas which are preparing them to become global leaders. The cartoon movie gave students the opportunity to use their creative competence to further their foreign language fluency, technical skills, and ability to work in a collaborative environment.

Scottsdale, AZ, June 29, 2014 --( ISA’s trilingual cartoon movie, "Finding the King of the Desert", took first grade French and Spanish track students over four months to create and produce. The production was done in English, French, and Spanish. Students were responsible for creating the story line, constructing the setting, taking the still shot photos, editing the footage, and recording the script. The classroom teacher, Alexis Bussière, said “The children have benefited enormously from this creation. Indeed, they were able to work together to achieve an artistic piece of work. Students were the creators of the cartoon movie and not passive spectators. They understood and participated in the creative process of a work, developed qualities of script writers, developed their visual imagination, expanded their language skills to interpret a role (often in a different language than spoken at home).” The children of the class raved about their experience creating the film and showed a genuine interest in learning the material needed to produce the cartoon.

The benefits of this project-based learning exercise were valuable because it gave students the truly unique opportunity to control the production from start to finish, and ultimately determine their own learning experience. Some of the educational objectives of this lesson in the area of language included promoting bilingualism, developing mastery of the spoken and written language by recounting and understanding, explaining, interpreting, structuring the narrative vocabulary and practicing grammar. According to research published by a team of Purdue University researchers, project-based learning is “More effective than traditional instruction for long-term retention, skill development, and satisfaction of students and teachers”[1]. These innovative experiences are helping ISA students grow and develop while furthering the International School of Arizona’s goal of producing the global leaders of tomorrow.

The production can be found on YouTube at

About International School of Arizona
The International School of Arizona is a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) Primary and Middle School offering French and Spanish immersion tracks. ISA was founded in 1997 to fill an unmet need in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area for children to obtain early foreign language learning in a multicultural setting.

ISA's educational programs offer students the opportunity to learn another language and culture in a full immersion environment. Students gain a global perspective and obtain skills that enable them to communicate with a wide range of people, appreciate other cultures, become flexible thinkers and enrich their lives. Each year new language class options and cultural activities are added to the school's offerings for the community at large. ISA continues to evolve into a valley-wide resource and community asset.

For more information, please visit

[1] Strobel, J., & van Barneveld, A. (2009).
International School of Arizona
Travis Sylvester