4 Hybrid Teaching Strategies to Engage Your Students in School or at Home

By Elena Spathis
@elenaspathis


My district, like so many others, opted for a hybrid model this fall, combining in-person classes in the mornings with online classes in the afternoons. As you can imagine, I realized quickly that I had to rethink my methods, get creative, and be innovative. 

My Spanish classes have always been communicative and collaborative. I want my students to immerse themselves in the language by using it with each other because what’s the sense in me talking at them and them zoning out? So, I have always focused on interactive paired or group tasks that make my classes flow. But due to the current restrictions limiting student group size and mandating social distancing, accomplishing this became more challenging. I knew I had to think differently about how I could truly engage my students in person and online. Fortunately, I found four ways to meet the needs of classroom-based and online student groups. 

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Ideas for free summer PD

By Alma Rivera
@proferiveraac

If you are like me, it takes at least a month to get into the non-teaching frame of mind at the end of the school year. We go from a hectic state of mind to a state of calm. With that comes that uneasy feeling that something remains undone. Have you ever woken up, during the summer, and freaked out that you didn’t get something graded, planned, or created for your classes?  I’m sure we have all had that uneasy feeling. Yet, we eventually get into another routine: one of summer. Less hectic, more reflective and family focused. During these down times, there is a lot of professional development available. After all, aren’t teachers continuous learners? Here are some ideas for summer professional development that are easy, free, and can be done from anywhere.

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Lessons learned from implementing a proficiency-based language program

By Elena Giudice and Holly Morse  

Developing an oral proficiency program is not easy. My former colleague, Holly Morse and I submitted a proposal on this topic for ACTFL 2019 as we felt we had a lot to share on how we led various departments in shifting to oral proficiency-based programs. Our goal was to keep it real, no sugar coating. We wanted to share the growing pains and joys we went through and help others avoid unnecessary difficulties. Here are some of the key takeaways we shared during our ACTFL presentation: 

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Why should I attend a language conference?

For language teachers—or really for teachers of any subject—it may often feel like you are tucked away in a silo, toiling away alone day after day. Attending a language conference can remind you why you chose this profession in the first place and connect you with hundreds (or in the case of ACTFL, thousands) of like-minded educators.  You will walk away with not only professional growth, but also with lifelong friends. 

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