June 6 | #EarlyLang
“Wrapping up the School Year”
from June 6, 2018
On June 6, language teachers from grades K-8, and beyond, met for the biweekly #EarlyLang chat. Participants reflected on the school year as they discussed end of year traditions, past successes, and plans for the year to come.
Q1: What (if any) end of the year traditions do you have for yourself and/or students?
While several participants mentioned that they do not have traditions, relying on variety the needs of the students to keep it interesting, others discussed common end of year celebrations. These included songs and food related to the culture of the TL. Finally, students review their portfolios or recall their favorite books or songs from the various topics studied.
Q2: What are you most proud of this year? What was your greatest success?
@kellycondon “Developing a SUCCESSFUL method to keep my classes in the target language! You can read about it here: https://t.co/WkUdmlaF98”
@nathanlutz “I am most proud of doing a serious rollout of @Seesaw for Ss to collect their work and be able to reflect upon it”
@windycitysenora “starting and STICKING to FVR in my 4-6th classes”
@MundodePepita “I was super excited this year about using stork & lynx live webcams, which ended up being really fun & motivating for my students. They generated tons of authentic, meaningful communication on a daily basis. . . I just wrote a post this weekend with the links & more info: https://t.co/7ELg7Vy3zR”
@doriecp “Finally holding the book I co edited with @manuelawag and M. Byram in my hands!”
Q3: For next school year, what are you considering changing or dumping altogether?
A theme that emerged for changing revolved around proficiency. Several participants discussed working on curriculum so that it is both proficiency based and developmentally appropriate. Developing an art exchange or using art was another suggestion, prompted as one participant mentioned arpilleras, South American folk art depicting daily life, and using them as a means to introduce basic themes in primary grades.
Q4: Do you recommend any activities or resources to support your students’ language skills over the summer?
The main activity suggested was reading. Some participants allow students to borrow books from classroom libraries, others provide lists of recommended books that students can find at the public library. Another suggestion was to create a playlist of videos and songs watched during the year so the students can share them with their families. Some schools maintain an online portal for students to access or summer language camps to help students maintain their proficiency.
Q5: How will you use summer break?
Many participants have plans to attend and/or present at summer institutes, including NNELL Summer Institute (https://t.co/WnZqMrV8Wv). Other plans were reading, time with family, and graduate classes.
Reflaction (reflection + action)
One participant comment that it is possible to be a better teacher next year because she was a better teacher this year. Maintaining forward momentum and continuing to learn and change practice can also help. Taking some time over the summer to relax, recharge, and not think about school can give a new perspective for the new year, too.
Thank you to all who participated in this #EarlyLang chat! Thank you to our lead moderator, Dorie, (@doriecp) for leading the chat and to our co-moderator, Valerie Shull(@windycitysenora) for helping guide the conversation. Thanks also to EMC School (@EMCSCHOOL) for sponsoring tonight’s chat and to the entire #earlylang team: Nathan Lutz (@nathanlutz), Julie (@MundodePepita), Cristina Rdz-Villa (@MaCristinaRV), Jenny Delfini (@JL_Delf) and Sara Cottrell (@SECottrell). These volunteers conduct polls, brainstorm Qs, create images, and run the chat.
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