Finding Resources Is the Hardest Thing
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Finding Resources Is the Hardest Thing

“Effective language learning experiences are facilitated by the use of strategically selected resources designed to support course, unit and lesson performance objectives” the Teacher Effectiveness for Language Learning (TELL) Framework tells us. I was sitting in a meeting the other day listening to one of the publishers of new textbooks for the state of Texas, when […]

Another take on the G word …
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Another take on the G word …

Many teachers I meet who are interested in making the shift to a performance driven instructional repertoire have this idea of a false dichotomy. The all or nothing approach – either we teach grammar or we teach toward performance and proficiency.  I can say there are few things in life are that clear-cut. Teaching toward […]

Solving the Note Taking Puzzle
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Solving the Note Taking Puzzle

So, here’s the thing that was happening in my classroom, and it has been making me crazy.  I am fighting every day to be the most engaging and interesting thing in the room so that my students will pay attention to me and learn Spanish.  I am speaking in the target language 90+% of the […]

On their own path this week (03/19/16)
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On their own path this week (03/19/16)

Looks like spring is finally here – well at least where I live – and with it are all those thoughts of renewal and spring cleaning. Unfortunately, our outdated school calendars don’t allow for much of that thinking and for so many teachers March is a rough time and often represents the end of an […]

On their own path this week (03/12/16)
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On their own path this week (03/12/16)

After taking some days off for a mini-vacation, I’m back this week with another blog summary.  The extra time allowed me some extra time to filter through more posts and the blogosphere didn’t disappoint. Below are some my favorite reads from the past couple of weeks. Of course, the weekend might also be a good time […]

Finding the Right Word
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Finding the Right Word

I read a scholarly article (that I have since misplaced in my digital hoard) that highlighted that native Spanish speakers employ the use of circumlocution because of the linguistic variety and different dialects.  As I thought about this, I realized that I also utilize circumlocution frequently (in both languages that I speak).  I decided to implement this process […]

Language advocacy starts with you
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Language advocacy starts with you

At a conference recently I listened to several key leaders of our profession talk about the critical need for advocacy and their work in ensuring that languages are “at the table” through these efforts. I honestly applaud all efforts that advocate for language learning. You see, I think languages are a gift, a look into […]

My students have a voice
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My students have a voice

“The assistant principal who observed us was impressed with how you all followed the lesson and participated!” I told my Spanish 3 class. “Did you know he was coming?” asked one student, “because it didn’t feel any different.” That was one of a few epiphanies I had about my teaching methods, as well as this whole […]

On their own path this week (02/27/16)
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On their own path this week (02/27/16)

My blog reading seems to be frozen just like this winter weather. I’m so ready for some spring weather. Spring: a time for renewal and for new ideas. And while the weather isn’t quite catching up with my physical desires for warmth, a season of regional spring conferences around the country allows us me connect […]

Getting Started – Naturally
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Getting Started – Naturally

Getting started is often the hardest part in a unit, heck in anything new! We are often unsure how to take that first step and in our classrooms when introducing language chunks or vocabulary, how do we do that while staying in the target language and NOT translating. Language learning requires attention and practice, asking […]