Issues in Second Language Education

LAWSUIT ON BEHALF OF LANGUAGE STUDENTS MOVES AHEAD

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Federal authorities confirmed yesterday that a nationwide class action lawsuit has been filed to sue school districts across the USA for financial compensation to generations of dissatisfied world language students. If the case is successful, thousands of teachers, administrators and school district officials will be held liable for failing to deliver quality instruction and ordered to pay multiple billions of dollars to students that did not acquire language they could use in the real world. Legal experts believe that school districts may be ordered to pay up to $130,000.57 for each affected student. Lawyers seek to prove beyond a [...]

THE ENCHANTED HOUR #1

I just marked the passages I wanted to memorize, quote and use.This is a book every world language teacher needs to read: The Enchanted Hour: The Miraculous Power of Reading Aloud in the Age of Distraction, by Meghan Cox Gurdon. The author is a children's book reviewer, not a world language teacher, but she gets it. Her insights into why reading aloud is important are wise and timely in our digitally distracted age. It is a is a worthy successor to The Read-Aloud Handbook, by Jim Trelease and Reading Magic, by Mem Fox. If you teach with novels, C.I., TPRS or other [...]

ON USING THE SOCIAL BRAIN IN THE CLASSROOM

“Teachers are losing the education war because our adolescents are distracted by the social world. Naturally, students don’t see it that way. It wasn’t their choice to get endless instruction on topics that don’t seem relevant to them. They desperately want to learn, but what they want to learn about is their social world—how it works and how they can secure a place in it that will maximize their social rewards and minimize the social pain they feel… How do our schools respond to these powerful social motivations? Schools typically take the position that our social urges ought to be [...]

LOCAL TEACHER BOOSTS HOMEWORK LOAD IN BID FOR TEACHER OF THE YEAR

Local teacher Anne Dur has a plan. Last year she was a finalist for national teacher of the year and missed receiving that honor by just a few points. This year she is determined to get it. This year she thinks she knows what to do. Dur has upped the homework requirement in her French classes to what some might call an excessive amount of time. “Last year I missed it because the kids didn’t score high enough on the national exams. That’s not going to happen again this year. Non monsieur,” said Dur. Students and parents were shocked to [...]

NEW BOOK: MEANINGFUL READING COMPREHENSION CHECKS

This book will make your life easier and your teaching more effective. It is a compilation of the best comprehension checks for reading that I have discovered over 30 years of teaching and researching Free Voluntary Reading with my students. Whether you call it FVR, Sustained Silent Reading or Light Reading, when students read on their own magic happens. When it is taught well, self-selected reading is the best way to differentiate instruction and engage students. This book will show you how to do it--even with reluctant readers. With these best trade secrets from expert reading teachers you will be [...]

KRASHEN’S HYPOTHESES OF LANGUAGE ACQUISITION: Introduction (#1 of 9)

More teachers are discovering the joy of teaching with comprehensible input-based methods like TPRS. To effectively implement the WHAT and the HOW of these methods, understanding the WHY is crucial. Dr. Stephen Krashen’s Hypotheses of Language Acquisition are the why. In this series of posts we will explore each of Krashen's major hypotheses and how they apply in the classroom. Krashen’s is not the only model of learning teachers need to know, but due to their enormous influence, it is crucial that modern language teachers understand these hypotheses and how they apply in the classroom. This is the same series of lessons [...]