Designed to support language educators in increasing students' proficiency, this material provides examples of different types of formative, interim and summative assessments in the three modes of communication. In addition to video clips of K-12 students in different levels of German, French, Spanish and Japanese in the state of Wisconsin, the site includes rubrics, study guides and a glossary of terms.
Type of Material:
Tutorial on assessment of communicative language with a pre and post-viewing guide for professional development purposes.
This material is perfect for discussions at conferences, in-service activities and even within departmental settings. For teacher education programs, this material is suitable for new teachers who may not have been taught in an immersion setting. It gives the teacher important pointers about how to do this kind of teaching.
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Identify Major Learning Goals:
The object can be used to improve all skills (reading, writing, speaking, listening and culture) at all levels. Resources and information about interpersonal, interpretative and presentational modes of communication are included.
The teacher will learn how to teach the target language in a communicative way, staying in the target language 100% of the time.
Target Student Population:
The students and educators featured in the videos are K-12, but the information provided is useful to post-secondary language instructors as well.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
The teacher should have some background in World Language methods and the Standards for Language Learning in the 21st Century.
The seven videos, which include clips of engaged students and enthusiastic instructors interacting in the classroom and speaking to interviewers about their experiences, are all under 15 minutes in length. They are concise and offer a wealth of information. The well-scaffolded teacher resources guide educators from initial discussions about assessment to creating lesson plans. The vocabulary page serves as a useful resource as well. Rubrics and planning template allow users to easily implement the assessment practices that "Get in the Mode" offers.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Teacher candidates are well-served by concrete examples of World Language pedagogy as modeled by respected experts. These videos, although they have been around for awhile, still embody the essential elements of World Language teaching. he students featured in the videos are all engaged in learning and enthusiastic about communicating in the target language. Several instructors mention how their assessments allow students to build their confidence and use more of the target language. Instructors who implement the ideas shown will surely engage their students as well.
A good use of these materials would be a Professional Development workshop where teachers could watch together and reflect on their own classroom practice.
The materials are excellent as is, yet technology has improved greatly since their original arrival on the scene. If funding were available, it'd be great to update them to include more classroom technologies, project-based, student-centered learning and other 21st century classroom techniques.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The site and videos are professional, easy to navigate and well organized. "Get in the Mode" is a catchy logo that unifies the materials - both print and video -- provided. The teacher resources are thorough and well written. The discussion questions included in them are thought-provoking.
As new technologies are widely available in the classroom since these videos were made, an update and new videos including videos of less-commonly-taught languages would be an enhancement.
Other Issues and Comments:
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