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Greetings, Idaho French Teachers!
Support for education at all levels
is being cut, and demands on teachers are rising. Research continues to show
that students’ foreign language study has positive effects on their performance
across multiple disciplines, and yet languages are often treated by
administrators, legislators, or the public as nonessential fields of study. It
can start to wear on you after a while!
The best antidote to this kind of
discouragement is to reconnect with our motivations for joining this profession
in the first place, and with the other people around us who share the same
motivations. We ourselves have experienced the excitement and joy of
discovering very different cultures from our own and learning to communicate
within them, and we have seen our students do that, too. We understand the
broad and deep impact the study of languages can have on a person’s life. In
order to keep these core convictions in focus, and also in order to keep adding
to our stock of knowledge and teaching ideas, it is important for us to get
together regularly and collaborate.
We Idaho French teachers have two
excellent opportunities to gather in the next six months:
IATLC French Retreat at McCall Outdoor
Science School, June 24-26, 2011
watch for email and paper mail information on this weekend retreat, or click here.
is space for up to 20 participants; please register by April 20, 2011.
IATLC annual fall conference, Caldwell
High School, October 6-7, 2011
decide right now to attend the 2011 meeting of the IATLC and make it part of
find another language teacher who has yet to discover the benefits of this
meeting, and get that teacher to come, too.
think of the colleagues you admire and make a nomination for this year’s
Teacher of the Year.
please consider presenting a session at this year’s meeting. The discussions
that follow presentations are some of the best ways for the state’s French
teachers to connect and learn from each other, so we try to have French
sessions spread throughout the two-day schedule. Have you got an effective way
of teaching a grammar point? an activity that your students really love? a
project that you’ve conducted? a professional development experience that you
think other teachers would like to try, too? Each of us has a number of things
that we could present in order to get the whole group talking. Please take a
minute and figure out what you might be able to bring to the rest of us this
year, and then email me (email@example.com)
or submit a presentation proposal form!
While it represents a bigger
commitment of time and money, it can also be enormously beneficial both to your
professional knowledge and your enthusiasm level to attend the conferences of
the national organizations:
American Association of Teachers of French (AATF) annual meetings:
Montréal, July 6-9
Chicago, July 5-8
American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) annual meetings:
Denver, November 18-20
Philadelphia, November 16-18
In order to help keep language &
culture education--and specifically, French education--strong, we need to be
united, and we need to be visible. You can help those efforts by maintaining
your membership in key professional organizations, especially the AATF. The
AATF offers a rich trove of resources and scholarship support for professional
development, and it also serves as a strong voice of advocacy for French
education nationally. Our chapter’s numbers have dwindled dramatically over
recent years, and we need to build them back up and show we’re still here! To join
or renew your membership, please go to the AATF web site: www.frenchteachers.org.
Au plaisir de
vous voir nombreux en octobre à Caldwell . . . vive le français et vive
Associate Professor of French, University
Chapter President, AATF/French Section
Leader, IATLC (2009-2011)