September 22, 2011

Draw It Live: Interactive Whiteboard


Draw it Live is a free application that allows you to work together with other people to draw in real time; the collaborative drawing space is accompanied by a text chat area. You simply create a whiteboard and share its URL to allow other people to join in.

You could dictate, via chat, what students should draw, or you could describe what you and they draw as items appear for comprehensible input. Alternatively, your students could work on a collaborative drawing, using the text chat to communicate about what they’re doing in the target language.

This application is available at

Do you have more ideas for how to use this application for language teaching? Share them in the comments at our blog.

Free Rice: Donate Food While You Practice Vocabulary, Geography, and Art

FreeRice is a non-profit website run by the United Nations World Food Program. You and your students can select an area to be quizzed on, and for each correct answer 10 grains of rice are donated to fight hunger.

You can take vocabulary quizzes in English, Spanish, French, Italian, and German. There are also geography quizzes (flags, capitals, and maps) and one with famous paintings.

Free Rice is available at

48 Vocabulary Widgets

Spice up your professional webpage with a vocabulary widget – there are widgets for English, Spanish, Japanese, Latin, Greek, and German. Browse through widgets at

Global Wisconsin: Web Resource for International Education

The new Global Wisconsin online video series and website provide school district administrators, school board members, teachers and students with Wisconsin-based international education resources. Produced by the Educational Communications Board (ECB) and the Department of Public Instruction (DPI), Global Wisconsin showcases the very best examples of international education from across the state of Wisconsin. Designed to encourage school districts to develop programs focused on the importance of understanding cultural differences and issues, and the impact it will have on students’ future success—Global Wisconsin makes the case that international education is both essential to students and easily integrated into current teaching practices. In addition to nine short documentaries, Global Wisconsin’s Valuing International Education provides testimonials from education, business, and community leaders highlighting the growing need to engage the international community.

Available now at:

Wertz, R. [OFLA] FW: Global Wisconsin Now Online. OFLA listserv (OFLA@LISTSERV.KENT.EDU, 20 Sep 2011).

Anglomaniacy: English Language Learning Website for Kids


Anglomaniacy is a site for kids who are learning English as a foreign or second language. Young ESL students will find here lots of online activities and hundreds of printable worksheets that can help them with their English.

Browse the resources and online activities at

California English Proficiency Test 'Almost Guarantees' English Learner Classification, Study Shows


California English Proficiency Test 'Almost Guarantees' English Learner Classification, Study Shows
September 19, 2011

Most four- and five-year-olds who take an English proficiency exam before kindergarten are bound to fail the test, according to a new study.

Taking the California English Language Development Test "almost guarantees" a student will be classified as an English learner, the University of California, Berkeley's Center for Latino Policy Research, study reports. Just 12 percent of kindergarten students who took the CELDT in the 2009-2010 school year were considered English language proficient, misidentifying the many others as English learners, according to the study.

Read the full article at

E-book of Class Starters: ¿Qué le Dirías?

Here’s a nice free download from the Zambombazo website: a set of class starters. Each page has three photos from Spanish-speaking countries; students imagine what they would say to the people in the photos. Download the e-book here:

2012 Classical Literacy Exam Announcement

Registration is now open for the 2012
Classical Literacy Exam! This is The Third Annual Classical Literacy Exam; over 800 students participated in the exam last year. The organizers will again be awarding certificates and medals for high achievement.

Posted on their site ( are the tests and answers from 2011 and 2010 and additional practice sheets. As soon as they finalize the 2012 CLE list of terms, they will post them on the website.

ABQ Latin welcomes your questions and suggestions and thanks you for your interest in the CLE and the promotion of the classical literacy. Feel free to contact the CLE Chair, Joseph Malone, (clechair at abqlatin dot org) or Hugh Himwich (himwich at aa dot edu) with any questions you might have.

Malone, A. [Latinteach] 2012 Classical Literacy Exam Announcement. Latinteach listserv (, 15 Sep 2011).

Here is a direct link to information about this exam:

Classical Latin Texts at the Packard Humanities Institute


The Packard Humanities Institute has made its database of Classical Latin texts available online at . Click on "Word Search," then click on the symbol next to the "search" button for directions.


Here are two upcoming Oktoberfest opportunities in Massachusetts:

-Oktoberfest at Sam Adams Brewery in Boston, MA, on September 27:
-A German-themed road race in Cambridge, MA, on October 2:

Get yourself and your students ready with some Oktoberfest songs:

Here are some useful websites with pictures, videos, and information about different Oktoberfest celebrations:

Do you know of more Oktoberfests in the United States? Post information in the comments section of our blog.

German-American Day Resources

German-American Day is October 6th. Here are a few resource from Langenscheidt: (scroll down for German-American Day).

Russian Film Week in New York City


The 11th Annual Russian Film Week returns to the New York City from October 28th through November 4th, 2011. This year’s film selection, curated by the film industry veteran Katie Metcalfe of Future Shorts, will be screened exclusively at Manhattan’s legendary Village East Theater.

Throughout the week, cinema lovers will be offered a variety of thought-provoking film entertainment, including action blockbusters, compelling dramas, hilarious comedies and innovative art house projects. Screenings will feature Q&A sessions with the cast and the directors, who are coming to New York City specifically for the Russian Film Week. The event will also feature panels, master classes, conferences, networking events and speaking engagements aimed to strengthen the dialogue between Russian and American filmmakers and cinema enthusiasts.

Learn more, see a schedule of screenings, and purchase tickets at

Free “Why Russian?” Posters from SRAS

The School of Russian and Asian Studies (SRAS) recently published two new posters. Some of you have requested more, and some of you have may not have received any yet. Please let me know if you would like any copies, or more copies (no charge whatsoever - please just include your mailing address and how many copies of each poster you would like).

The first, "Why Russia," contains a number of thought-provoking facts and visually striking photos to convince readers that the Russian language and study abroad can open doors to intriguing opportunities.

The second, SRAS’s "All Programs" poster highlights the range of subjects you can explore in locations across Russia, Ukraine, and Kyrgyzstan. It is, essentially, SRAS’s program search engine in print form which can be posted in your department, Russian club, or classroom. On the back all dates, costs, and other information for all of our programs are listed on one convenient sheet.

You can also download the PDF of these posters, as well as other materials, on the SRAS site here: .

If you would like any copies, or more copies, please just include your mailing address and how many copies of each poster you would like.

Lisa Horner
SRAS Program Development
lhorner at sras dot org

Horner, L. [SEELANGS] Free "Why Russia" posters. SEELANGS listserv (, 21 Sep 2011).

Job Opportunities in Los Angeles: Full-time/ Part-time Lecturer in Japanese-Language


The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles (JFLA) will open a new Japanese-language course in January 2012. With their many years of experience and achievements in Japanese Language Education, they will offer courses based on "JF Standards," which the JF Headquarters in Japan have developed during the past few years. JFLA invites applicants to apply for their Full-time/ Part-time Japanese-language Lecturer Position in Los Angeles and work with them to promote Japanese in southern California.

Download more information from

‘OMG Meiyu,’ a Breakout Hit Web Show, Schools Chinese in American Slang


‘OMG Meiyu,’ a breakout hit Web show, schools Chinese in American slang
By Tara Bahrampour
September 14, 2011

A young Chinese woman wanted to know: What is the English word for that gunky yellowish stuff in the corner of her eyes when she wakes up in the morning?

She turned to Jessica Beinecke, the 24-year-old host of an online travel video program aimed at young Chinese viewers, and Beinecke responded with a humorous segment for her show, explaining in fluent Mandarin and exaggerated gestures all the icky stuff that comes from the face.

The segment, called “Yucky Gunk,” went viral, garnering nearly 1.5 million hits. And all of a sudden a petite blond Midwesterner, who is not Chinese and only began studying the language five years ago, became an iconic translator of American slang for pop-culture-hungry Chinese fans.

Read the full article at

European On-line Language Observatory Launched

From, the EU co-funded project on multilingualism and language policy, has launched its website today: The website will serve as the on-line reference on the practice of multilingualism in Europe, and feature a Language Observatory gathering and disseminating best practice in language policy and language learning.

The on-line Language Observatory will collect and present information on:

- motivators, scope and practice of multilingualism in various sectors of civil society;
- best practice in development and implementation of language policy;
- multilingual tools. is designed for language learners and teachers, social and public services, civil society as well as policy makers involved in developing language policy.

Read the full press release at

Access the new project website at

Article: U.S. Spy Agencies Struggle with Post-9/11 Languages


U.S. spy agencies struggle with post-9/11 languages
By Tabassum Zakaria
September 19, 2011

Despite intense focus on Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Middle East in the last decade, U.S. spy agencies are still lacking in language skills needed to talk to locals, translate intercepted intelligence and analyze data, according to top intelligence officials.

The September 11, 2001, attacks prompted a major push for foreign language skills to track militants and trends in parts of the world that were not a Cold War priority.

But intelligence agencies have had to face the reality that the languages they need cannot be taught quickly, the street slang U.S. operatives and analysts require is not easy, and security concerns make the clearance process slow-going.

Intelligence agencies require more than just a perfunctory grasp to understand cultural meanings and different dialects.

"In these very difficult terrorism targets, there's obviously this yearning for native speakers," said Ellen Laipson, president of the Stimson Center, a Washington think tank. "Some of the people you're trying to track are not themselves highly educated so they use a lot of slang, and it's a higher standard than if you were trying to monitor or interact with very elite foreign ministry people of a developed country."

U.S. spy agencies are reaching out to first- and second-generation Americans whose heritage would provide the language and cultural understanding quicker than trying to teach someone from scratch.

Read the full article at

NFLC Language Consultant Opportunities

The National Foreign Language Center (NFLC) at the University of Maryland is a research institute dedicated to promoting communication within the United States in languages other than English. We are currently working on a project that provides adult language learners with interactive online tools to reinforce their foreign language skills. We focus on less commonly taught languages. We are currently looking for several individuals to help us launch projects in the following languages (Arabic script):

Hindko (Southern)
Punjabi (Western)

Minimum Requirements:
Native, or near-native, proficiency in the target language
English proficiency
Ability to conduct Internet research and submit Word documents and/or audio files

Desired Qualifications:
Knowledge of ILR scale of language proficiency

Specifically, we need educated native speakers of these languages (or individuals with equivalent proficiency levels) to review online activities and cultural notes for online foreign language learning modules for their native language using software we provide. In addition, we are looking for speakers to find authentic reading and audio passages, to record audio files, and to perform various editing tasks in these languages.

The work is part-time, contractual, and most of the work can be done from your home computer. All candidates must have permission to work in the United States.

If you are interested in working with us, or if you know a qualified candidate who would be interested in working with us, please contact the NFLC via email at recruitment at nflc dot org. Submit your current resume and include the language(s) you speak in the subject line. Thank you!

Amy Menjivar
Program Coordinator
National Foreign Language Center
University of Maryland
amenjivar at nflc dot org

Job: Assistant or Associate Professor Computational Linguistics and Applied Linguistics

Announcement of Search--Iowa State University

Assistant or Associate Professor
Computational Linguistics and Applied Linguistics

The English Department at Iowa State University is seeking applications for an Assistant or Associate Professor of applied computational linguistics with an emphasis in evaluation of English learners’ linguistic production. At the undergraduate level will teach courses in linguistics and foundation courses in English. At the graduate level will teach courses in two Ph.D. programs, Rhetoric and Professional Communication and Applied Linguistics and Technology, at both MA and PhD levels. Graduate courses including computational analysis of English, second language assessment, second language acquisition according to specialty. Research areas of particular interest: pedagogical applications of natural language processing, assessment of second language, second language acquisition, and statistical approaches to the study of language.

Beginning January 2012 or August 2012 depending on availability. Ph.D. in computational linguistics or related field and potential for excellence in research and effectiveness in teaching required for Assistant Professor, tenure-track; Ph.D. in computational linguistics or related field, a demonstrated record of accomplishments in scholarship, including an outstanding publication record, and effectiveness in teaching required for Associate Professor, tenure-track or with tenure. ESL teaching and assessment experience, publications, and external research funding preferred. 2/2 teaching load to begin.

To apply for this position, please apply through the Iowa State University website at and click on "Apply for the Vacancy" (#110850) and complete the Employment Application. Please be prepared to enter or attach the following: a letter of application/cover letter, curriculum vitae, statement of teaching/research interests, transcript or list of graduate courses, and contact information for three references. Application deadline is October 23, 2011. ISU is an EO/AA Employer. Women and members of historically underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Chapelle, C. [LTEST-L] Assistant or Associate Professor--Iowa State University. LTEST-L listserv (LTEST-L@LISTS.PSU.EDU, 22 Sep 2011).

Job: Associate Professor, Spanish, Usage-Based Linguistics


University or Organization: Kansas State University
Department: Modern Languages
Job Rank: Assistant Professor
Specialty Areas: Usage-based Linguistics
Required Language: Spanish

Assistant Professor of Spanish. Specialist in Spanish usage-based linguistics, applied linguistics or second language acquisition, tenure-track, beginning fall, 2012. PhD in hand by June 2012. Teach 5 courses per year at graduate or undergraduate levels, including introductory Spanish linguistics courses and courses in support of M.A. options in Second Language Acquisition and Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Commitment to active research profile and service activities. Native or near-native proficiency in Spanish and English. Successful candidate will value diversity in all its dimensions, and consider different cultural perspectives in solving problems in this area.

Applications will be reviewed beginning November 1, 2011 and will continue until position is filled.

View the full posting at

Small Grants for Doctoral Research in Second or Foreign Language Assessment


Small Grants for Doctoral Research in Second or Foreign Language Assessment

Purpose: To make available small cash awards to promising doctoral students working in the area of foreign- or second-language assessment that will help them finish their dissertations in a timely manner.

Award Value: Up to $2,000 (payable in U.S. dollars only)

October 15 or February 15 — Deadlines for applications

Learn more about this opportunity at

2012 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program

2012 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program - Deadline: November 15, 2011

The United States Department of State is pleased to announce the scholarship competition for the 2012 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program for overseas intensive summer language institutes in thirteen critical need foreign languages. CLS institutes provide fully-funded group-based intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences for seven to ten weeks for U.S. citizen undergraduate and graduate students. Students may apply for one language, and will be placed at institute sites based on language evaluations after selection.

Languages offered: Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Turkish, and Urdu.

Interested applicants should review the full eligibility and application information on the CLS Program website: Arabic, Chinese, Persian, Russian, and Japanese institutes have language prerequisites, which can be found here:

Students from all academic disciplines, including business, engineering, law, medicine, sciences, and humanities are encouraged to apply. While there is no service requirement attached to CLS Program awards, participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers.

The CLS Program has planned outreach events at universities across the U.S. in fall 2011. Check out the CLS webpage or our Facebook page:, as we may be coming to your institution!
For more information about the CLS Program and to access the on-line application, please visit the CLS website:

ACTFL Fall Webinar: Communicating Students' Learning

The third webinar of ACTFL’s first fall webinar series, Communicating Students' Learning, will be conducted on Wednesday, October 5, 2011, from 3:30pm to 4:30pm ET. Paula Patrick will focus on communicative classrooms where students demonstrate their learning through real performances with language. Learn to plan for and use this assessment as stronger evidence of student learning, reframing accountability. Take away ideas for communicating with parents, demonstrating achievement of learning targets for administrators and the next year's teacher, and showcasing learning for the community.

Learn more at
Register at

Second Language Acquisition Certificate Program for African Language Instructors


A Second Language Acquisition Certificate Program for African Language Instructors
Date: May 21st - June 1st 2012

As interest in African language learning and teaching increases, so does the need to prepare graduate students, teaching assistants who are planning to pursue African language teaching as a profession and faculty members in the field who need retooling. The 2012 Summer Institute has been designed to help meet this need. It will train fellows in a number of crucial areas central to the effective operation of an African Language Program

Applicants should submit a letter of application and supporting documents for the 2012 Summer Institute by September 30, 2011.

For full details go to

2011 National School Conference on International Youth Exchange


The Council on Standards for International Educational Travel (CSIET) would like to invite you to the 2011 National School Conference on International Youth Exchange in Seattle, Washington on October 29th, 2011 at the Renaissance Seattle Hotel on 515 Madison Street. Check in and breakfast will begin at 8:00 am, and sessions and workshops will be held from 9:00 am - 5:30 pm.

This year's Conference is titled "Building Generations of Youth Exchange". Mr. Kelly Aramaki, the 2010 recipient of the prestigious Milken Educator Award, will be our keynote speaker.

For full conference details go to

Colloquium: Moving Between Languages: Research Perspectives


Colloquium: Moving Between Languages: Research Perspectives
Friday, October 7, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM, B-4 Dwinelle Hall

Elizabeth Boner, San Francisco State University
Negotiating relationship through translation: How American development practitioners and Tanzanian beneficiaries exploit the gap between languages

David Malinowski, UC Berkeley
How do you move between languages when you’ve got no body? Lessons from online French lessons at Berkeley

Tim Wolcott, San Francisco State University
Americans in Paris: Myth, desire, and subjectivity in student accounts of study abroad in France

For full details go to

Call for Proposals: 2011 Global Education Conference


The 2011 Global Education Conference will be held November 14 - 18, online and free. Sessions will take place in multiple time zones and multiple languages over the five days. The conference is a collaborative and world-wide community project designed to significantly increase opportunities for globally-connecting education activities.

The call for submissions is now live and available at

Call for Papers: Boston University Department of Classical Studies Graduate Student Conference


CFP: The Raw and the Rotten: Perversions of Eating in Antiquity

Boston University Department of Classical Studies
Graduate Student Conference

March 23-24, 2012

Keynote: Alexander Sens, Joseph Durkin, SJ, Professor of Classics, Georgetown University

The graduate students of Classical Studies at Boston University seek abstract submissions for their fourth-annual graduate student conference. We will explore the topic of food, its preparation, “unnatural” eating, and its repercussions in the ancient world. Food, as a basic human necessity, serves an important biological function but can also signify status, wealth, sophistication, culture or lack thereof. Greeks and Romans recognized this and frequently used motifs of unnatural eating to portray foreigners, enemies and literary characters negatively. Even in one of the earliest works of extant Greek literature, Homer uses food to portray the Cyclops as an uncultured barbarian. Historically, employment of private chefs and extravagant dinner parties were ways to display one’s wealth and power, but were often satirized. Gluttony, regurgitation and cannibalism are kinds of perverted eating used as cultural signifiers. Our goal will be to study this topic in the context of the ancient world, and we encourage submissions from all disciplines.

Any current graduate student interested in presenting a paper at the conference should submit a titled abstract of no more than 400 words. Please include your name, email address, institution, and paper title in the body of the email and attach your abstract as a PDF so that they may be judged anonymously. The deadline for submissions is December 1, 2011.

Papers should be 15 minutes in length. Graduate students from Boston-area universities will prepare a 5 minute response for each paper. A draft of accepted papers must be submitted two weeks before the conference in order that responses can be arranged.

Please send abstracts and inquiries to Dustin Dixon and Leslie Lemire at bugradconference at gmail dot com.

Call for Proposals: AP Annual Conference


Call for Proposals
AP Annual Conference
Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin
Lake Buena Vista, FL
July 20-21, 2012

The Advanced Placement Program® and the AP® Annual Conference Steering Committee invite you to participate in developing the program for the College Board's AP Annual Conference 2012 by submitting a proposal for a main conference session.

Session Categories

Deepening Content Knowledge (e.g. Gain deeper understanding of difficult concepts to teach/learn, Deepening knowledge of a specific time period, Increase understanding of major issues within a content)
Instructional Planning, Resources and Technology to Enhance Instruction in the AP Classroom (e.g. Designing and/or planning/sequencing instruction, Using Technology/Web-based tools, Resources)
Instructional Strategies That Lead to AP Success (e.g. Using data/assessments to determine instructional strategies, Strategies for DBQs, FRQs, Strategies for text analysis, How to teach a certain content area)
Building and Improving an AP Program (e.g. State initiatives, Using data to improve an AP program, Building and/or strengthening higher education partnerships, Motivating students in an AP subject, Vertical Teams/Curriculum Alignment)
Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners (e.g. Policies, programs and services to build equity and access, Differentiating Strategies)

Deadline for submission: Friday, Oct. 21, 2011

For full details go to

Call for Papers: Midwest Association for Language Learning and Technology


MWALLT is seeking proposals for its upcoming conference at Drake University October 21 – 22. The conference theme is “Will it Blend? Learning in the 21st century” Instructors, graduates students, and center administrators are encouraged to submit proposals. This is a broad topic that can encompass areas of interest.

Deadline for Proposals is OCT. 7th.

For full details go to

NECTFL Review 68

The new issue of the NECTFL Review is now up on our website and available for your reading pleasure:

The Review is a free, juried, online, biannual publication of the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. It contains articles, information, and peer-written, objective reviews of textbooks, ancillaries and other materials.

This issue's articles are
Rifkin, Benjamin. "Language learning journeys and destinations: Are we there yet?"
Long, Sheri Spaine. "How and why did the Spanish curriculum get supersized? And how can we fix it?"
Kissau, Scott; Kolano, Lan Quach; Wang, Chuang. "Motivation, race, and foreign language instruction: The need for culturally responsive teaching."
Mast, Douglas W. "Using semantic maps and word families in the beginning-level middle school foreign language classroom."

Reviews include materials in Arabic, Chinese, French, Spanish and more!

Kline, R. [FLTEACH] NECTFL Review 68. FLTEACH listserv (FLTEACH@LISTSERV.BUFFALO.EDU, 15 Sep 2011).

Access this and past issues at

Book: Individual Learner Differences in SLA


Individual Learner Differences in SLA
by Janusz Arabski and Adam Wojtaszek
published by Multilingual Matters

Review: This volume makes a very important contribution to research on themes and issues connected with Individual Learner Difference in SLA. Its rich and varied content offers very valuable insights by a team of dynamic and up-to-date researchers. All the sub-fields of enquiry are represented here: from gender to age and from motivation to learning styles, thus providing a very useful reference base for theoretical issues, pedagogical implications and further research initiatives in the field.

Visit the publisher’s website at

Book: Studying Processability Theory


Studying Processability Theory: An Introductory Textbook
Edited by Manfred Pienemann and Jörg-U. Keßler
Published by the John Benjamins Publishing Company

Summary: Processability Theory (PT) as developed by Manfred Pienemann is a prominent theory of second language acquisition. PT serves as a framework for a wide range of research covering issues, including L2 processing, interlanguage variation, typological effects on SLA, L1 transfer, pidgins and creoles, linguistic profiling, stabilisation/fossilisation and teachability. This textbook provides a reader-friendly introduction to PT. It is designed for students with a basic knowledge of (applied) linguistics. The components of PT are set out in four parts. The first part focuses on observed facts, in particular on paths of L2 development and learner variation. The second part gives an overview of the theoretical basis of PT. Part three details the application of PT to contexts other than ESL (i.e. Japanese, creoles and bilingual acquisition), and the forth part focuses on practical applications. Each chapter contains exercises (including data analysis and interpretation) which may be used for individual study or in class. The textbook can be used as a concise introduction to PT. However, it may also serve as a point of reference for particular PT-related topics. The individual chapters were written by specialists in each of the research areas.

Visit the publisher’s website at

September 15, 2011

The Best Online Resources For “Information Gap” Activities


Information Gap activities are often used in second language classrooms. They are generally designed as partner exercises where one student has to get information from the other — speaking the target language — in order to complete the assignment.

Mr. Ferlazzo has compiled a useful list of online resources: overviews, templates, and specific exercises that can serve as examples. Access it here:

Game for Practicing the Conditional


Here is a simple game to practice the conditional, submitted by Jo Budden to the British Council’s Teaching English website:

This game is good to revise and practice structures in the first conditional. The teacher begins with a sentence, for example “If I go out tonight, I’ll go to the cinema.” The next person in the circle must use the end of the previous sentence to begin their own sentence. E.g. “If I go to the cinema, I’ll watch Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” The next person could say, “If I watch Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, I’ll eat lots of chocolate.” Then, “If I eat lots of chocolate, I’ll put on weight” etc. etc.

For more game ideas from the same site, go to

47th Chicago International Film Festival


47th Chicago International Film Festival
October 6-20

Each year, the Chicago International Film Festival scours the globe to find new, unconventional voices in film and bring them to Chicago. This year they will be presenting more than 180 films from 50 countries, including over 45 films by first-time directors.

See the lineup of films at

Learning and Practicing Vocabulary, Part 2

Last week several teachers shared ideas for introducing and practicing vocabulary. Here are some more:

I know that this isn't the most creative idea, but one of the ways I like to reinforce my vocabulary is by creating puzzles for free on (the actual url is ). The crossword puzzles are great because they are teacher-generated, so you can make them as complicated as you'd like (e.g., "accusative singular of 'city'"). Sometimes I will make a grammar warmup ("conjugate sum, esse in the Present and Imperfect Subjunctive" or "decline urbs, urbis, -ium") and give them a wordsearch for the lesson's closure--the students will need the right forms in order to solve the puzzle. I tend to end my week by giving them a puzzle like this for the last 5-10 minutes of class Friday--affectionately known as "Puzzle-Friday" by my kids.

I also like to make students create their own vocabulary drills. Sometimes for a warm-up I will have them create ten illustrations from their vocabulary lists, and I cut them up and rearrange their pictures to create the vocabulary warm-ups for the reviews for the rest of the week. (Low-tech but effective).

Masters, K. Re: [Latinteach] Latin III vocab lists (Roeder, Lisa). Latinteach listserv (, 19 Aug 2011).

A list of different online word search generators (including Puzzlemaker) is available at

Another useful website is Spelling City – once you or your students enter a spelling list the website generates different practice activities.

Read an idea for using dual language texts to present vocabulary at this blog:

Read reviews of 7 online applications for improving English vocabulary at

English and Soccer: Premier Skills English


Students can learn English online with the help of this free website brought to you by the British Council and Barclays Premier League. Communicate in two of the world’s global languages – English and soccer (football!).

Every section of the site has something to help people learn English: they can play vocabulary games, practice reading with stories on and off the pitch, watch videos with exercises, and do listening activities and grammar exercises.

There is also a special section for Teachers with lesson plans and classroom resources.

Learn more and explore the available resources at

The Best Sites For Learning Strategies To Teach ELL’s In Content Classes


Many teachers of “content” classes (mainstream classes with some English Language Learners in them) face challenges each day. Here are Larry Ferlazzo’s choices for The Best Sites For Learning Strategies To Teach ELL’s In Content Classes:

New Resource for Dual Language Standards: Guidance for Spanish Language Arts in Dual Language


Guidance for Spanish Language Arts in Dual Language

By Mid-Atlantic Equity Assistance Center and the District of Columbia Public Schools' Office of Bilingual Education

Until now, little cohesive documentation has been available for schools with dual language and Spanish immersion programs to guide Spanish language arts curriculum and instruction. The resource, Normas para la enseñanza de las artes del lenguaje en español para programas de inmersión doble, addresses this need. As many states move toward adopting the Common Core Standards for English language arts, this tool can help dual language programs ensure that students are prepared to meet standards for Spanish that meaningfully correspond with those for English.

Carried out as a joint project of the Mid-Atlantic Equity Center at GW-CEEE and the District of Columbia Public Schools’ (DCPS) Office of Bilingual Education, the Normas are aligned to the Common Core Standards. They take into account the linguistic differences between the Spanish and English languages, and the methodological differences in Spanish and English literacy instruction and traditional Spanish literacy learning expectations. Most importantly, they delineate expectations for Spanish literacy development.

Learn more and download the guide at

Website for Latin American Traditional Music: Tu Tradición Latina

Listen to traditional Latin American music podcasts, organized and commented on by website host Salvador Toro – Moya, at

Spanish411: Online Resources

The Spanish411 website has useful tools, including a dictionary and a verb conjugator; vocabulary practice targeted at either the website’s own progression or at students using Paso a Paso; grammar lessons and practice exercises; and links to more resources, including Spanish magnetic poetry and a gallery of “Hispanic history makers.” The website is available at

Genki Kanji Practice Site


A series of exercises to practice the Kanji in the Genki curriculum series is available at

According to the website “The exercises have been carefully designed to follow the structure of your coursebook and you will find ample usage of Hiragana to help recognize the kanji through multiple choice and gap-fill exercises, jumble modules and crosswords. Some contain sound and other display pictures.”

More resources for the Genki series are available from the publisher at

New “American Institute for Indonesian Studies”

The American Institute for Indonesian Studies is a new nonprofit educational organization formed as a consortium of U.S. universities and colleges with an interest in furthering the development of Indonesian studies. The main goals of AIFIS are to foster scholarly exchange between Indonesian and American scholars, to promote educational and research efforts by U.S. scholars in Indonesia, and to facilitate visits by Indonesian scholars to the U.S. AIFIS has a new office in Jakarta and is planning an inaugural event in January 2012. AIFIS administration in the U.S. is based at Cornell University.


Article: Arabic Instruction on Rise in U.S. Schools Since 9/11


Arabic Instruction on Rise in U.S. Schools Since 9/11
By Erik Robelen
September 9, 2011

In exploring changes in the classroom since the 9/11 attacks occurred a decade ago, one notable development is growth in the teaching of Arabic as a foreign language. To be clear, it's still rare in comparison with most other languages, but the study of Arabic has been gaining ground in U.S. schools, in part with federal assistance.

President Bush singled out the teaching of Arabic for emphasis when he announced the National Security Language Initiative in 2006, a multiagency undertaking to promote the teaching of "critical need" languages. In his speech, he invoked the war on terror and the nation's needs in defense, intelligence-gathering, and diplomacy.

Experts say one challenge in expanding Arabic instruction in U.S. schools is finding certified teachers. But that is beginning to change. In fact, at least two universities—Boston University and Michigan State University—this fall for the first time are offering new teacher-certification programs in Arabic at the secondary level.

Read the full article at

New Resource: SwahiliWeb


SwahiliWeb is a resource destined both for the research community and for the general public and intended to facilitate access to unpublished or difficult to locate documents dealing with or originating in the Swahili world. This will include journal articles, manuscripts, maps, sound files, photographs and film. It will serve as a digital archive for materials that are difficult to consult elsewhere, or are damaged or threatened in their present state; and it will ensure that basic tools for research and for locating sources on the Swahili hosted elsewhere are more easily accessible.

SwahiliWeb is available at

Article: Williamson County, Tennessee Schools Set Sights on Developing Bilingual Kids


Williamson County schools set sights on developing bilingual kids
School district considers K-12 language program
by Maria Giordano
September 12, 2011

Kindergartners in Williamson County could soon be on their way to becoming fluent in a second language.

It’s only a goal for now, but school officials in the district are working toward the idea and have narrowed down the language choice to Mandarin Chinese, German, Spanish or French. Ultimately, whatever is selected would be taught to students from kindergarten through 12th grade, much like students around the world are taught English as a second language.

The idea that high school graduates should be fluent in a second language was born out of several community meetings held last school year. Thousands of parents turned out for brainstorming sessions to create the district’s seven-year strategic plan.

Read the full article at

Job: English as a Second Language/ESL Program Coordinator, University of San Francisco


English as a Second Language/ESL Program Coordinator - Renewable Term Position

Job Responsibilities
Responsibilities: include teaching up to 12 units (20 student cap) per semester of English for Academic Purposes classes for matriculated and non-matriculated students with course release for administration; coordinating growing ESL program; performing service in areas such as curriculum development, advising, and testing and placement.

Qualifications include university teaching experience in English for Academic Purposes, evidence of a strong commitment to teaching, willingness to work in a culturally diverse environment, ability to work closely with colleagues in other disciplines, and an understanding of and commitment to support the mission of the University.

Job Open Date

Job Close Date

View the full job posting at

Part Time Opportunity: Native German-Speaking Students and Teachers Needed

A publisher of German language audio programs is looking for native German-speaking students and teachers with clear, pleasant, and expressive voices to read dialogues and exercises from the student textbook. Each participant will record for one or more hours at a recording studio near South Station. No experience necessary. $75/hour.
Auditions are being scheduled now; the recording itself will commence later this month or next.

Please contact Susan D. Boer at sdboer at rcn dot com if you are interested in auditioning.

Job: Assistant Professor of Spanish as a Heritage Language, New Mexico State University

The Department of Languages and Linguistics is pleased to announce the following tenure-track opening at New Mexico State University: Assistant Professor of Spanish as a Heritage Language. The announcement is scheduled to appear in the October MLA Job List (as well as online), in the electronic job list of the Chronicle of Higher Education, and on the job listings on the LinguistList. The direct link to the posting on their site is:

For those who are interested, the department also has a position open for Academic Department Head. Details for that position may be found at:

Classical Association of the Atlantic States Grant Programs


Each year CAAS offers its members grant money to strengthen the teaching of and foster public support for the languages, civilizations, and cultures of ancient Greece and Rome.

Resource: Grants of up to $300 are awarded to individual educators to use to enhance or promote their local programs. Such grants can be used for supplies, purchasing publications, field trips, or speakers.
Professional Development: Grants of up to $500 are awarded to individual educators to attend any program, workshop, or meeting (other than CAAS's own meeting) which has as a stated goal the improvement or expansion of the instructor’s skills as a teacher. While proposals with substantial components of teaching and learning in the Classics are encouraged, the experience need not be solely classics-related, but should provide skills that can have a direct effect on the classroom environment. The money may be used to cover tuition/fees, books, travel and meals (mileage and food reimbursed at the IRS level).
Program: Larger grants underwrite programs that encourage the study and understanding of the Classics and classical civilization among a wider audience within the CAAS region, e.g., performances, publications, special gatherings or series.

The Grants Committee will review all applications on a rolling basis throughout the year, awarding grants based upon their merit and as funding is available.

For full details go to

Fall Seminars: Foreign Language Instruction for Today’s Students


for the 2011-2012 School Year at California State University, San Bernardino

Foreign Language Instruction for Today’s Students

Three Strands:
Tier 1A - Standards-based Instructional Practices for Foreign Language and ELL Teachers
Tier 1B - Using Stories to Enhance Standards-based Foreign Language and ELL Instruction
Tier 2 - Standards-based Instructional Practices For Teachers of Advanced Spanish Classes

Dates: PROGRAM WILL BE OFFERED ON FOUR SATURDAYS: October 15, November 5, December 3, 2011, January 28, 2012, and ONE WEDNESDAY, November 15, 2011, observation day at a local school.

Deadline for Enrollment: October 5, 2011. Space is limited. Please respond promptly.

For full details go to

Workshop: Teaching the Whole Class: Learner Differences in the Language Classroom


Teaching the Whole Class: Learner Differences in the Language Classroom
10:30 AM - 3:00 PM
September 24, 2011
The University of Texas at Austin

This workshop is organized to prepare language instructors to teach the different learners in our classrooms. It will give participants practical and theoretical knowledge of how to approach different types of learners with different needs in language courses. Speakers from the UT community who teach language, specialize in teaching different learners , and/or deal with different needs in the language classroom will share their experiences, practices, outcomes, and give examples of activities used to teach all of our students.

All participants registered by September 19 will have a free lunch provided during the conference.

Find out more and register at

ACTFL Fall Webinar: Differentiating to Support Each Learner

The second in ACTFL’s first fall webinar series, Differentiating to Support Each Learner, presented by Paula Patrick, will be held on Wednesday, September 21, 2011, from 3:30pm to 4:30pm ET. This webinar will address instructional strategies that support each learner. It establishes a rationale and provides specific ideas for differentiating within daily lessons as well as through assignments and assessments. Participants also learn effective class management techniques to conduct a differentiated classroom.

Learn more about this and other upcoming webinars at
Register here:

American Philological Association and Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting


143rd Annual Meeting: January 5-8, 2012, Philadelphia, PA

Every winter, the American Philological Association holds a joint meeting with the Archaeological Institute of America. In addition to the presentation of individual papers and panels, features of the annual meeting include the Placement Service, for institutions advertising positions and candidates seeking them; an exhibit hall for browsing and purchasing the latest books from a variety of publishers; the AIA Archaeology Fair; roundtable discussion sessions; dramatic performances by the Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance; meetings and receptions of affiliated groups; and much more.

Please register on or before November 16, 2011.

For more details go to

Early Language Learning Opportunities at the ACTFL Convention

The National Network for Early Language Learning will be hosting several events at the ACTFL Convention, November 18-20 in Denver:

11/18/2011 NNELL State at Regional Representatives Meeting at ACTFL, 11:00 am. - 12:00 p.m.
11/18/2011 Managing the Multitudes: Assessment Activities for the FLES Classroom at ACTFL, 2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
11/19/2011 NNELL Annual Swap Shop Breakfast at ACTFL, 7:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
11/19/2011 Using Children's Literature as an Authentic Teaching an Assessment Tool at ACTFL, 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
11/19/2011 Evaluation of a Dual-Language Immersion Program in Rural Oregon, 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Keep track of NNELL’s events and other events of interest to early language educators at their website:

You can learn more about NNELL at and more about the ACTFL Convention at

Call for Papers: Thirteenth Annual Texas Foreign Language Education Conference


13th Annual Texas Foreign Language Education Conference (TexFLEC)
March 2-3, 2012

Deadline: Priority will be given to proposals received by November 28, 2011.

This year’s conference focuses on how language classrooms of the future may appear. Language classrooms are rapidly changing with the adoption of new technologies, increased globalization, budgetary constraints, and new research findings with regard to learner factors and identity issues. It is time for language educators and researchers to gather and discuss how these new developments present opportunities and challenges for language education.

View the full call for papers at

Call for Papers: CALICO with IALLT 2012


Open Education: Resources and Design for Language Learning

Hosted by the University of Notre Dame, Indiana
June 12-16

Preconference Workshops: Tuesday, June 12 - Wednesday, June 13
Courseware Showcase: Thursday, June 14
Presentation Sessions: Thursday, June 14 - Saturday, June 16

CALICO is a professional organization dedicated to the use of technology in foreign/second language learning and teaching. CALICO's conferences bring together educators, administrators, materials developers, researchers, government representatives, vendors of hardware and software, and others interested in the field of computer-assisted language learning.

Proposal topics may address the conference theme or any area of technology and language learning including, but not limited to, new software, new uses for old software, technology and curricula, theory, and research.


View the full call for papers at

NCELA Call for Papers: Young English Learners

NCELA Call for Papers: Young English Learners

AccELLerate! is the quarterly review of the National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition, covering issues of interest to stakeholders in the education of English learners.

NCELA invites contributions to the winter 2012 special theme issue that deals with young children (0-6 years) from non-English-speaking or bilingual backgrounds. They seek papers that explore

aspects of young ELs’ social-emotional development, language development, and emergent literacy, numeracy, and other academic skills;
conceptual frameworks, curricular and instructional strategies and supports, including parental involvement and family literacy, that promote language learning;
linguistically, culturally, and age appropriate assessment instruments and practices; and
professional development and training for educators.

NCELA also welcomes papers that examine pre-K and kindergarten initiatives and discuss program implementation, quality standards, and the efficacy of early childhood interventions.

Submissions may be theoretically and empirically based or address more general issues of policy, practice, and program development and evaluation. Preference is given to manuscripts that are well-prepared, well-organized, and well-written. We always welcome contributions from teachers who work with this population.

Three categories of papers are published in the review. Full-length articles (approximately 1,000 words including all references, tables, and figures) should provide objective synthesis and interpretation of a subject of importance to the field or report original research. Success Stories (around 500 words) describe successful projects and programs or provide brief reports of new observations, concepts, or methodologies. Teachers’ Gems of Wisdom (around 250 words) share professional insights and best practices in teaching ELs. Papers that have been published or are under consideration for publication elsewhere in an accessible, retrievable form are not acceptable for submission to the review on grounds of prior publication. However, summaries of previously published work may be submitted.

To submit an article
All submissions should include complete contact information (phone number and email) for the primary author and a short biography with the name, title, and affiliation of each author.
All articles will be reviewed carefully; NCELA may request revisions by the author(s) and/or may make needed revisions. A submission does not guarantee publication; revising an article does not guarantee publication.
Submissions must be received by October 25, 2011.
Complete submissions should be sent to Natalia Romanova, quarterly review coordinator, at romanova at gwu dot edu
All authors will be notified of the publication status of their articles by January 10, 2012.

Manuscript preparation guidelines
The acceptable format for manuscript submission is MSWord. For writing and editorial style, authors must follow guidelines in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th edition, 2009), except that, in order to improve the readability of the publication, references should be cited in the text in bracketed numbers, with references following each article in the same numerical order; other notes should be indicated by consecutively numbered superscripts. Go to

Call for Contributions to Edited Volume: Signed Languages as Second Language

Signed languages as second language:
International perspectives on teaching and learning

Editors: Dr David McKee, Dr Russell S Rosen, Dr Rachel Locker McKee

Overview of volume
The practice and profession of signed language teaching and learning has emerged internationally since the 1980s, supported by the growth of sign applied linguistics research and increasing provision for the training of sign language teachers, interpreters and other signing professionals in many countries. The teaching of signed languages as second languages has proliferated at all levels, from informal community contexts to university degree programs. In common with other minority languages that have been rapidly promoted in educational domains, signed language pedagogy in much of the world has grown from a basis of practical experience, informal mentoring, and the influence of available teaching materials, rather than from a body of research and formal training in language teaching practices. While signed language learning has a high popular profile, theories and practices from second language perspectives developed by researchers and practitioners in this field are under-documented in the applied linguistics literature. Much of this knowledge has been developed and transmitted within face-to-face contexts such as conferences and courses attended by signed language users, which is appropriate, but leaves an ephemeral record of that body of knowledge.

Research in signed language teaching and learning as second languages is a vital area of enquiry, because its effectiveness underpins many advances made by Deaf people worldwide, in terms of language recognition and access to participation in society. It is therefore an important domain of activity that is ripe for further documentation.

This volume will allow established and emerging researchers and practitioners in the field of signed language-as-second language teaching and learning to document and showcase international perspectives and best practices. Contributions should be based on analysis of experience, or data-based research, and may employ different research orientations and methodologies. Authors are invited to contribute scholarly work on the following themes:

History of Signed Language Teaching and Learning
Historical studies on sign language teaching and learning
Learning and Acquisition of Signed Languages
Second language acquisition of signed languages
Student learning processes and strategies
Effective teaching strategies or interventions
The role of first and second languages in signed language classrooms
Curriculum design for particular (cultural, institutional) contexts or learner audiences
Materials and media for signed language teaching and learning
Effectiveness studies of different curricula
Assessment and testing strategies or interventions
Training and Professional Development
Issues in the training and professional development of sign language teachers
Social impacts of sign language teaching, on: Deaf people as teachers, learners, society or communities
Considerations and issues for the future of signed language teaching and learning

The proposed timeline for compilation of the volume is as follows:
Abstracts due 20 Dec 2011
Notification of acceptance 31 Jan 2012
First chapter drafts due 1 Aug 2012
Revised chapters due 1 Feb 2013
Book manuscript submission1 May 2013
An academic publisher will be secured once volume contents have been determined early in 2012.

The deadline for abstracts for this volume is December 20, 2011.
Abstracts must not exceed two pages in length (with at least 11-point font). Electronic submissions should be sent to the email address below.

Send abstracts and inquiries to:
Dr. David McKee
School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies
Victoria University of Wellington
PO Box 600, Wellington 6140
david dot mckee at vuw dot ac dot nz

McKee, D. Call for Papers. Linguists interested in signed languages listserv (, 11 Sep 2011).

Extended Call for Papers: Intercultural Competence and Foreign/Second Language Immersive Environments



Intercultural Competence and Foreign/Second Language Immersive Environments
Third International Conference on the Development and Assessment of Intercultural Competence
Tucson, AZ
Westward Look Resort
January 26-29, 2012

Proposals are accepted for papers, panels and pre- and post-conference workshops.

View the full call for proposals at
Learn more about the conference at

September 2011 Issue of the School of Russian and Asian Studies Newsletter


Deadlines for next semester's study abroad programs are coming up October 15. Take the chance to move ahead, the chance to expand your perceptions and your knowledge of the world, and the chance to better prepare yourself for the future.

This month's back-to-school edition of the SRAS newsletter offers lots of information on these programs, on the unmet demand for foreign languages in the US, and lots and lots on Russian culture, language, politics, and more.

Access the newsletter online at

Book: Bilingualism in the USA


Bilingualism in the USA: The case of the Chicano-Latino community
by Fredric Field
published by the John Benjamins Publishing Company

Description: This text provides an overview of bi- and multilingualism as a worldwide phenomenon. It features comprehensive discussions of many of the linguistic, social, political, and educational issues found in an increasingly multilingual nation and world. To this end, the book takes the Chicano-Latino community of Southern California, where Spanish-English bilingualism has over a century and a half of history, and presents a detailed case study, thereby situating the community in a much broader social context. Spanish is the second most-widely spoken language in the U.S. after English, yet, for the most part, its speakers form a language minority that essentially lacks the social, political, and educational support necessary to derive the many cognitive, socioeconomic, and educational benefits that proficient bilingualism can provide. The issues facing Spanish-English bilinguals in the Los Angeles area are relevant to nearly every bi- and multilingual community irrespective of nation, language, and/or ethnicity.

Visit the publisher’s website at

Book: A Taste for Corpora


A Taste for Corpora
Edited by Fanny Meunier, Sylvie De Cock, Gaëtanelle Gilquin and Magali Paquot
Published by the John Benjamins Publishing Company

Description: The eleven contributions to this volume, written by expert corpus linguists, tackle corpora from a wide range of perspectives and aim to shed light on the numerous linguistic and pedagogical uses to which corpora can be put. They present cutting-edge research in the authors’ respective domain of expertise and suggest directions for future research. The main focus of the book is on learner corpora, but it also includes reflections on the role of other types of corpora, such as native corpora, expert users corpora, parallel corpora or corpora of New Englishes. For readers who are already familiar with corpora, this volume offers an informed account of the key role that corpus data play in applied linguistics today. As for readers who are new to corpus linguistics, the overview of approaches, methods and domains of applications presented will undoubtedly help them develop their own taste for corpora.

Visit the publisher’s website at

September 11, 2011

PocketCultures: Explore Life in Other Countries


PocketCultures is an independent site which aims to increase connections, awareness and understanding between different cultures. The site consists of 3 different sections:

Blogs of the World
Here we feature high quality, well written blogs from different countries. They may be written by locals or expats, but all are accounts from people living in a particular country. So instead of reading a third party view, you can read it from people who experience the country first hand.

Topics of the World
Here we publish articles and links about specific aspects of world cultures. Cultures is a vague word, so we decided to break it down into topics such as food, science, music, language… – anything relating to the culture of a particular country.

People of the World
Real life stories and interviews from all kinds of people around the world, especially those living across cultures: cross-cultural relationships, multicultural families, living abroad, global perspectives.

Explore this website at

Create Fake Facebook Pages

You or your students may want to create Facebook pages in your target language for famous people, or fictitious people from a target country, or even about yourselves. Here are four resources for doing so:

And here are two blog entries reviewing the above sites:

Children's Books Forever - Free Children's eBooks in Twelve Languages


Children's Books Forever hosts free children's ebooks that you can view online and or download to your local computer. As Children's Books Forever points out, the books are suitable for use on SmartBoards. There are books available in twelve languages: English, Afrikaans, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Indonesian, Japanese, Norwegian, Spanish, and Swedish.

Visit the Children’s Books Forever website at
Read some ideas for how to use this website at

Learning and Practicing Vocabulary, Part 1

Teachers on several different listservs have been discussing different ways to introduce and practice vocabulary. Here are some of their suggestions.

We play tons of games in my classroom to get the kids to learn the new vocabulary.

Lo Tengo (I got it!) - The class is divided into two teams. Each team is given the entire list of vocabulary words on cards (think of printing the vocab list only in French in a size 50 font or something like that). Each member of the team gets roughly the same amount of words. The teacher calls the word in English and the first student to shout ¡Lo Tengo! (or any other form of "I got it") gets the point. The team with the most points gets an extra credit point.

Vete a Pescar (Go Fish) - Groups of students (usually 4 or so) play Go Fish by asking in the target language the opposite of the card they are holding. Player with the most points gets an extra credit point.

La Solterona (Old Maid) - students in teams (usually 4 or so) take turns taking cards from the player to their right in search of matches (you can use the same set of cards as Go Fish). The player with the Old Maid card automatically loses and the player with the most matches gets an extra credit point. (A note about printing cards: I usually create a grid on Office and type the words in their. I get 3 columns and 4 rows usually. That seems to be the right size for students)

Crazy flyswatter game - post the words all over the room (print them really big!) and divide the class into two teams. Number the students. Call a word in English and then call a number. The student who gets their first gets a point for their team.

Selchow, K. Re: [FLTEACH] Need some new ideas on presenting vocabulary. FLTEACH listserv (FLTEACH@LISTSERV.BUFFALO.EDU, 28 Aug 2011).

Here are some of the ways I use flashcard games for teaching Chinese, just make adjustments for teaching your language:

1. Students partner together and spread out the designated cards on their desks (i.e. cards from lessons 1-3). I, or if the class is big, student #3, call out a card. The first person to hit the correct card gets to keep it. Keep going until all the cards are gone. Person with the most cards wins. Sometimes I then have the "winners" of each pair shift around so that the more advanced kids are challenging each other. I usually start calling words in Chinese, then English, or sometimes alternate.

2. This one doesn't always work out neatly, but it's a little different so we do it anyway. Each partner starts with 6 cards, face up on the desk (you can decide whatever's best for your class). Stack the rest of the cards face down between the students. On each turn, draw a card and decide whether or not you could exchange it or discard it. It's essentially Rummy- but trying to make a sentence out of the cards.

3. Bingo- lay out a 5x5 array of cards. When you call out the cards though, instead of just calling out words or translations, I'll throw in "verb", "noun", etc., or certain sounds within the words: "starts with ___, has a ____, ends in ____", etc.

4. I also do timed flashcards. I'll set the timer for 2 minutes, they go through as many as they can (reading the character side). They record their number, and each time we do it, the idea is to increase the number they read correctly.

B. Hsu-Miller. Re: [FLTEACH] flashcard usage. FLTEACH listserv (FLTEACH@LISTSERV.BUFFALO.EDU, 30 Aug 2011).

A technique I like that is very simple is to just have students pair up and push their desks together and lay a full set of flash cards spread out on those desks. You can either let students choose which card they want to identify or have their partner choose a card and when a student gets the translation right, they get to keep the card. The student with the most cards at the end in my classes always got participation points or paper money that could be cashed in to help a grade. I think flash cards are good if used in an interactive way and although my suggestion is simple, I think that the options are limitless!

Re: [FLTEACH] Flash card usage. FLTEACH listserv (FLTEACH@LISTSERV.BUFFALO.EDU, 29 Aug 2011).

Tune in for more ideas in next week’s InterCom.

News Resources for ESL

There are a number of online resources that make use of news sources or suggest ways of doing so in an ESL context or could be adapted for such a context. Here are a few of them for you to explore:

The Super Book of Web Tools for Educators Includes ESL/ELL Resources


In the Super Book of Web Tools for Educators there introductions to more than six dozen web tools for K-12 teachers. Additionally, you will find sections devoted to using Skype with students, ESL/ELL, blogging in elementary schools, social media for educators, teaching online, and using technology in alternative education settings.

Please feel free to download this free ebook, print it, and share it with your colleagues.

Learn more and access the ebook at

The Best Resources On Teaching Multilevel ESL/EFL Classes


Mr. Ferlazzo has collected and briefly described his favorite resources (mostly advice) for teaching multilevel classes here:

Editorial: ELL Assessment: One Size Does Not Fit All


ELL Assessment: One Size Does Not Fit All
By David N. Plank
August 30, 2011

Every year, some 5 million public school students who are still mastering English take assessments to determine how much they know, how much progress they’ve made, and where they need support.

Unfortunately, the results of these tests are far from valid because many of these students are not sufficiently proficient in English to demonstrate their knowledge and abilities on assessments designed for native English-speakers. It is akin to asking someone to fill out a job application in a language he or she doesn’t understand even though that person can potentially do every aspect of the job.

Underperforming on tests because of a lack of language fluency can unfairly depress students’ scores. If they perform poorly, we must determine why. Is it due to a lack of content knowledge or a lack of English proficiency? Is the assessment responsive to differences in students’ levels of fluency? Today, we fail to disentangle these issues far too often, with grave consequences for students.

Read the full article at

Ohio Festival to Celebrate Peru


Middfest International is renowned for taking a unique, in-depth look at another country’s culture and presenting it in a fun, festive environment. This year’s focus on Peru will be no exception! From fascinating exhibits that cover Literature and Language, Science, History, Art and Culture to exciting live performances by artists from Peru and the US to engaging youth activities, there will be lots to experience and enjoy!

The celebration will take place September 30th and October 1st and 2nd in Middletown, Ohio.

Visit the event’s website at

Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic Heritage Month runs from September 15th through October 15th. The theme this year is “Heritage, Diversity, Integrity and Honor: The Renewed Hope of America.” Here are some resources that you may find useful:

A web portal full of excellent resources has been set up by the Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and U.S. National Archives and Records Administration:

The Annenberg Foundation recommends the following resources:
-Pat Mora, a writer and activist from Texas and descendent of Mexican grandparents, works to preserve and celebrate Mexican American literature. Her work is featured in session 1 ( )of The Expanding Canon: Teaching Multicultural Literature in High School ( ). More Hispanic writers are featured throughout the program.
-In Biography of America ( ), program 26, “The Redemptive Imagination,” ( ) watch Esmeralda Santiago join in the discussion about the role of storytelling in creating identity. She explains what compelled her to tell about her experiences as a Puerto Rican coming to live in the United States.
-Middle school teachers, take a look at Teaching Multicultural Literature ( ). Authors and their works including Alma Flor Ada and Julia Alvarez and many others are featured.
-More resources for Hispanic-Heritage Month: American Passages: A Literary Survey ( ); and Invitation to World Literature ( ), program 11, “One Hundred Years of Solitude” ( )

Scholastic Magazine has an interactive website for kids at

A useful metasite with links to more online resources and information is available at

Two free concerts by Agustin Lira & Alma and Quetzal, curated by the Alliance for California Traditional Arts and presented by the American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress and the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, will take place in Washington, D.C., on September 14th. The concerts will also be webcast by the presenting organizations and broadcast by Radio Bilingüe–the National Spanish-language radio network. For more information go to

Look for free articles about Mexican history and culture at the Inside Mexico website: ; for example, this one about Doña Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez:

A collection of resources for elementary-age students is available at

Gale Cengage Learning has a website where you and your students can read biographies of significant Hispanic individuals; take a Hispanic culture quiz; follow a timeline of events that helped shape the Hispanic culture; explore Hispanic holidays, musical genres and other topics with information culled from Gale resources; and visit other pertinent sites and find suggestions for further readings, available at

Mexican Independence Day Resources

September 16th, el Grito de Dolores, marks the beginning of the Mexican War of Independence. Zachary Jones has put together quite a few resources for you and your students:

A crossword puzzle:
A video of a musical biography of Miguel Hidalgo:
Children's art:
Coloring sheets of famous people involved:
A word search with famous people involved:
A timeline of events:
Even paper dolls!:

Meanwhile, Ricardo and Kelly Várguez have a narrated comic strip online telling the story of Mexican Independence:

Larry Ferlazzo has compiled an annotated list: The Best Resources For Learning About Mexico’s Independence Day, available at

La Guinguette: Online Magazine for French Learners


La Guinguette is an online magazine for learners of French. Although La Guinguette suspended publishing new articles in July 2010, the monthly articles and features from 2001 to 2010 can be found online. Each comes with a full soundtrack and transcript.

The archived materials are available at

Latest Issue of Teaching Classical Languages Now Available Online


The latest issue of Teaching Classical Languages, the online journal sponsored by the Classical Association of the Middle West and South, is now available on their website.

In this issue:

Yasuko Taoka, "Classroom as Text: What Genres Do We Teach In?"
Tracy Jamison Wood, "Third Language Acquisition: Spanish-Speaking Students in the Latin Classroom"
Judith Lynn Sebesta, "Aliquid Novi: The New Series of Bolchazy-Carducci Latin Readers"

Access the latest issue at

The Jane Harriman Hall Professional Development Scholarship Program


The Jane Harriman Hall Professional Development Scholarship Program Announcement

The Jane Harriman Hall Professional Development Scholarship program is designed to support teachers in their ability to teach Latin. The scholarship was developed in honor of Jane Harriman Hall, founder of the National Latin Exam, in order to continue her efforts to bring high quality Latin instruction to students throughout the U.S.

Applicants must be current teachers of Latin, with at least three years of experience at the pre-K—12 level in a public or private school in the U.S. who spend at least 50% of their instructional time with students. Applicants are eligible for the award only once every ten years.

The scholarship is an amount equitable to the program being pursued. The applicant will present a proposal and a budget for expenditures at the time of application.

Number of Awards
There will be one award granted for the period of March 2012 through November 2012.

Deadline for application: October 1, 2011

Applications are available at or from

Mythology Links


An annotated list of useful websites dealing with classical mythology is available at

A Meeting of Middle, High School and Collegiate Minds on Immersion in German


The Massachusetts AATG and the Goethe-Institut Boston are co-sponsoring a second meeting of secondary and post-secondary teachers of German, planned for Saturday, September 17th under the title "Deutsch total!" The primary goal of this Deutschlehrkräfte-Tag 2011 is to bring together teachers of German from all levels--middle school, high school and college--to find common cause and ways to work with each other to strengthen German programs in Massachusetts.

Learn more and register at