‘La Preuve’ and The Case for Multi-Level Classrooms by Gerry Wass

“La preuve que il a existé c’était qu’il était ravissant.”  –Antoine de Saint-Exupéry A year and a half after retiring, I continue to get requests for help about how to run a multi-level language classroom.  Most come from teachers who already find themselves in this situation out of necessity, but others are intrigued because they believe that the model could produce a beneficial shift for them and for their students.  Many teachers are already doing some version and bring their positive experiences to the discussion. One of those recent requests came from Jen Schongolla, directed to both Michele Whaley and [...]


The school year gets long in the spring. Some days it seems like they just aren't getting it as quickly as we would like them to. But take heart, my friends, they know more than it seems like they do. Hang in there. "Comprehension precedes production... by a mile." —Susan Gross

By |2017-10-11T13:22:12-06:00April 17th, 2017|Categories: Acquisition, Mindset, Motivation|0 Comments


In his book Healthy Aging, Andrew Weil, MD, describes what we can all do to protect our brains throughout our lives. On pages 284-286 Weil writes about the protective value of learning another language. There are several comments that stand out in this section for language educators. The words in italics are those of Dr. Weil, the words in other print are my comments. IT’S THE EFFORT THAT COUNTS “You don’t have to succeed; it is the effort that increases brains plasticity and flexibility.” This meshes well with Carol Dweck’s findings on Mindset. Our students do not have to achieve [...]

By |2017-10-11T13:22:12-06:00January 21st, 2017|Categories: Acquisition, Mindset|Tags: |0 Comments


Mindset, by Carol Dweck What It’s About: Fixed mindset versus growth mindset. Carl Dweck shows us that no one is doomed by heredity or experience and that everyone can get improve. Too many of us do not believe that at a core level—too many think they are stuck: “That’s just the way I am” is their cry. Dr. Dweck, by focusing on the process and not the product, shows us how to encourage growth and change. 30 years of research indicate she is on to something. Quotable Quotes: “The fixed mindset does not allow people the luxury of becoming. They [...]

By |2017-10-11T13:22:13-06:00January 18th, 2016|Categories: Books Every Language Teacher Needs to Read, Mindset|0 Comments


This saying occurs at the intersection of Chris Biffle's Whole Brain Teaching, Carol Dweck's Mindset, and Alina Filipescu's password idea. This was the password for last week in all class levels as I get kids accustomed to saying this to one another when they make a mistake. Here it is as a mini poster for your classroom door.

By |2017-10-11T13:22:14-06:00October 12th, 2015|Categories: Innovation, Mindset, Passwords|Tags: |0 Comments