Dutch has been the official language of the island for years as the island is a part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, but Aruba has recognized English as an international language, and has required that children learn English as early as the 4th grade. Aruba's location off the coast of South America has also made Spanish extremely important. Students begin learning this as early as 5th grade.
Papiamento is a creole language with roots mainly from Portuguese, and to a lesser extent, from Dutch and English, and originated in the 16th century as a means of communication among slaves and slave drivers.
This native language was not considered important on Aruba until 1995 and was officially included in school curriculum in 1998 and 1999. Since, the island has embraced Papiamento, a Papiamento dictionary and fairy tales written in Papiamento are now available on the island.