In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science of Education                                      

How can I design accessible curricula that encourage active learning and healthy adolescent development?

World Languages Curriculum 

Assignments 

Assignments and artifacts completed for the ISTR World Language Teaching Methods course.

I. Reaction Papers

The direction I would like to take on group and collaborative work in my classroom became more clear after studying the Collaborative Language Approach (Richards & Rogers, 2014). I knew I valued communication and interaction, but after learning about the theoretical models specific to language classrooms, I was able to further distinguish what it was about this approach that aligned with my own views on language learning...

Reflection on the Collaborative Language Approach

At first, I was a bit skeptical of the idea of incorporating art because I felt there were many ways to achieve creating meaningful connections with our content to promote deeper learning. I was not entirely sure what additional benefits this approach to add to my classroom nor how I could go about doing this. My perspective shifted after participating in the activities during a demo session. I was convinced of the powerful tool incorporating arts-based pedagogy could be...

Reflection on Incorporating Art in Language Instruction

II. Alternative Approach Presentation

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1. UbD Unit Plan

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          Most students in my class have had three years of Spanish by 8th grade. Often, before teaching a new concept in a second language, it has been helpful for students to understand how the structure works in English, their primary language. Because of this, prior to beginning this unit, my students will already have an understanding of what nouns, subjects, pronouns, verbs and several different verb tenses, including the preterite, are. My 8th-grade Spanish students have occasionally been exposed to regional vocabulary differences, but the primary dialect of Spanish that is focused on and taught in class is Castilian. Though I do not believe the word “grammar” itself has been defined to my students prior to my unit, it is my expectation that they have created a functional meaning for themselves over their years of language and English instruction. 

          It is precisely for this reason that I am interested in structuring a unit that explores the concept of grammar itself. Students have been told of the importance of grammar, particularly in their language classes where, at St. Anne’s-Belfield School, the academic rigor is centered on grammar content and learning. Through this unit, I hope students will be open to analyzing how formal grammar is influenced and often determined by social power structures globally...

          Based on the outcomes of my planned activities, my students made good progress towards understanding our grammar focus. The enduring understanding goals that felt particularly supported by my unit are: 1) Perfect formal grammar does not always translate to perfect communication. 3) Patterns for grammar and understanding can often be derived from situational and structural hints. 4) The functional role direct object pronouns play. 

          Evidence that supports the development of these enduring understandings is derived from observations of my students’ willingness to engage in grammar-related work as well as two specific formative assessments, the first of which was the direct object pronoun flowchart (Appendix A) planned for day 2 of my unit design.

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Ii. Final UBD Presentation

2. Planning (Rationale, Assessments, Learning Activities)

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