The book club is reading The Keys to Planning for Learning by Donna Clementi and Laura Terrill. For the first session, Laura Sexton facilitated an excellent conversation about unit 1, which explores a 21st century world language curriculum.
Here are some of my initial reflections; more will come over time.
- So grateful! First, I would like to thank Laura for organizing the Langcamp community and spearheading the book club. I truly appreciate the conversations with my colleagues, who offer diverse experiences and perspectives, especially because I am not currently in the classroom at this time (but hope to go back soon).
- Online meetings are great. I enjoy online meetings. Google Hangouts are an interesting space for interacting with colleagues and friends, both via video and chat features. Being online makes it easy to research and share new ideas and also to find specific links.
- There are unique processes for online meetings. These include muting microphones when not speaking and expecting wait time after questions are asked. It's also interesting to think about how participants engage with each other, and what technological ground work needs to be laid in advance for this to happen. I have much to learn. (I'm thinking I may do a longer blog post about online meetings at some point.)
- I want to write my own curriculum. The discussions from last night made it clear how important a well-designed curriculum is for student success. I also think that the act of writing curriculum is critical. The process of engaging with and making decisions about the elements of curriculum, which includes the various standards, language functions, performance tasks, and authentic resources, leads to greater understanding of the end goals of instruction, and thus better daily practice.
- Moving towards proficiency requires much thinking work. We had many discussions about topics such as using the target language, engaging students, the three modes of communication, making tasks relevant to students, and engaging with authentic speakers.
- Student goals and self-assessment are critical. When student set goals and evaluate their progress, their engagement increases, and they take ownership over their learning.
- More learning! In addition to the discussions about curriculum, I learned some interesting tidbits, such as:
- This is the link for scheduling Google Hangouts On Air.
- Incorporating global thinking routines can deepen student thought processes.
- Social justice is a theme that recurs in unit design, and there are a variety of resources for learning more about this topic, such as this book, about social justice in the WL classroom.
- Those AAPPL rubrics can be powerful tools to use with students!