Early Language Learning World Languages in the Elementary Years Helena Curtain, Ph. D. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (Emerita)firstname.lastname@example.org
Key Concepts for Success withElementary & Middle School Language Learning from Languages and Children—Making the Match, Curtain and Dahlberg 2010, 4th edition, Pearson / Allyn and Bacon
1. Learners as active constructors of meaning Children learn new languages best when… Learners are active constructors of meaning rather than passive receivers of vocabulary and information..
2. Consistent target language instruction Target language || Native language separated Children learn new languages best when… Teachers consistently conduct instruction in the target language with minimal use of the native language. Teachers keep the target language and the native language distinctly separate.
3. Thematic Center for Lessons Children learn new languages best when… Units and lessons focus on a thematic center aligned with content and performance standards. There is a balance among the basic goals of culture, subject content, and language in use
Thematic Center Language in use (Communication) Content (Connections) Culture(s)
Food Pyramids Describing Food Geography/Climate Where Is It Grown? Timeline of Columbus’ Voyages/ Routes Columbian Exchange Other Products Exchanged Popular Common Foods: Staples Then and Now Foods Of the New World (Circa 1492) Foods Of the Old World (Circa 1492)
Content (Connections)Engaging with the Regular Curriculum Lettuce Wheat Peas Peanuts Tomatoes Potatoes Beets Strawberries Peppers Broccoli Onions Beans Corn Beets PineapplesOkra Carrots Eggplant SquashPumpkins Sunflowers Cacao Before or After 1492? Columbian Exchange
Sequencing/Chronology 4000 B.C. Oranges and watermelons 3600 B.C. Popcorn 2000 B.C. Marshmallows 490 B.C. Pasta and macaroni 200 B.C. Potatoes 1395 Gingerbread/Lebkuchen 1484 Hot dogs 1544 Tomatoes in Europe 1553 Potatoes in Europe 1762 Sandwiches 1819 Spaghetti
4. Classroom Management Children learn new languages best when… Teachers plan for classroom management as carefully as all other aspects of instruction. Ich bin leise. Ichhörezu. Ichmeldemich.
5. Scaffolding and Modeling Children learn new languages best when… Teachers scaffold instruction so that learners become increasingly independent in their use of the spoken and written language.
6. Communicative, significant contexts Children learn new languages best when… Learning takes place in communicative contexts that carry significance for the student.
6. Communicative, significant contexts Children learn new languages best when… These contexts include meaningful social and cultural situations, subject content instruction, storytelling, music, games, rituals, drama and celebrations.
6. Communicative, significant contexts Children learn new languages best when… Students learn grammar in context through usage not through analysis. Grammar for its own sake is not the object of instruction.
6. Communicative, significant contexts Children learn new languages best when… There are meaningful opportunities to use the new language beyond the classroom.
8. Goals of the general curriculum. Children learn new languages best when… The language program draws from and reinforces the goals of the general curriculum.
9. Activities: Intrinsically Interesting Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities thatare intrinsically interesting, cognitively engaging and culturally connected.
9. Activities: Child Development Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities that take into account the distinctive characteristics found at each level of cognitive, social, psychomotor, and educational development
9. Activities: Students USING language Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities that provide frequent opportunities for student language use.
9. Activities: Concrete Experiences Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities that include concrete experiences: visuals, props, realia and hands-on experiences
9. Activities: Physical Activity Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities that incorporate frequent opportunities for physical activity.
9. Activities: Learning Styles Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities that that appeal to a variety of learning styles
9. Activities: Learning Styles Children learn new languages best when… Learners experience activities that move students toward increasing independence and self-direction.
10. Story form Children learn new languages best when… Activities, lessons and units are affectively engaging and made meaningful and memorable through the use of story form and contain a clear beginning, middle and end. _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________ _________________
11. Reading and writing Children learn new languages best when… Learners use reading and writing as communicative tools appropriate to their age and interests, even in early stages of language development.
12. Frequent assessment Children learn new languages best when… Teachers and students assess learning frequently and systematically to provide information on progress and language development.
Sample Assessments: Interpersonal A. Interpersonal Mode Give and/or follow directions such as describing the way to a location or share “how-to-do” something. Role-play a real-world task such as conducting a telephone conversation, ordering a meal
Sample Assessments: Interpretive • Complete a cloze activity to indicate listening and/or reading comprehension. • Sequence sentences or pictures to indicate listening and/or reading comprehension
Sample Assessments: Interpretive Listen to a passage and follow a map or diagram. Draw and/or label an illustration such as a house, clock or a map according to oral or written cues.
Sample Assessments: Culture and Connections • Identify features and products of the target culture. Prepare a culture capsule. Produce crafts and/or artwork that are representative of the target culture(s).
Language Content Culture Content Language Culture Language Focus Content Focus Continuum of Intensity and Focus for Early Language Programs Leading to Proficiency Maximum Full Day Full Immersion Minimum 90-120 min. Weekly Intensity and Time Language, Culture, and Curriculum Content are essential elements of every curriculum model. The focus changes as time and intensity increase across the continuum. Adapted from Languages and Children: Making the Match, 4th Edition, 2010
Language Content Culture Content Language Culture Language Focus Content Focus Continuum of Intensity and Focus for Early Language Programs Leading to Proficiency Maximum Full Day Full Immersion Minimum 90-120 min. Weekly Less than Minimum Intensity and Time Programs with less intensity: • less than 30-40 minutes daily, and/or • less than three times per week • may not be able to meet the performance goals of the Standards for Chinese Language Learning and K-12 Performance Guidelines. Adapted from Languages and Children: Making the Match, 4th Edition, 2010
What about programs with less time and intensity?
Can support opinion, hypothesize, discuss topics concretely and abstractly, and handle a linguistically unfamiliar situation Advanced Can narrate and describe in all major time frames and handle a situation with a complication Intermediate Can create with language, ask and answer simple questions on familiar topics, and handle a simple situation or transaction Novice Can communicate minimally with formulaic and rote utterances, lists and phrases Proficiency Inverted Pyramid Superior HIGH MID LOW HIGH MID LOW HIGH MID LOW
Anticipated Performance Outcomes As Described in the ACTFL Performance Guidelines For K-12 Learners
Considering the content and the intended K-12 sequence set forth in the Standards for Foreign Language Learning, developers of the performance guidelines for students felt obliged to assume that accomplishment of such content standards required students to be enrolled in
elementary programs that meet from 3-5 days per week for no less than 30-40 minutes per class; middle school programs that meet daily for no less than 40-50 minutes; and high school programs that equal four units of credit.
Through learning about language we learn about culture
Through learning about culture We learn respect for others
Through learning respect for others, we can hope forPeace