Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Update: Worksheet Added to Berliner Gespräche 1

Hello all, Chris here. I've added a short comprehension worksheet to our first Berliner Gespräche video! Check the link for the original post:

Update: Worksheet Added for Nihongo Kaiwa 1

Hello all, Chris here. We've added comprehension questions to our first Japanese Kaiwa (conversation) video. Check here for the full post:

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

News: 2010 CT COLT Fall Conference

2010 CT COLT Fall Conference

World Languages: Essential 21st Century Skills for Global Citizens

Date: October 25, 2010
Location: Crowne Plaza, Cromwell

Conference Chairpersons:
Vincenza McNulty and Janet Picerno

Japanese Video: Nihongo Kaiwa 1

Hello all, Chris here again with the first video in our Japanese Kaiwa series! This video features Junko and Shogo discussing upcoming plans for the weekend. We also have some comprehension questions for your students below the video. Thanks to Junko for writing those! Enjoy! Comments welcome!

1) Shogo-san(otokonohito) no shuumatsuno yotei wa nandesuka.
2) Shogo-san wa Junko-san(onnnanohito) wo shoutai shimashitaka?
3) hutariwa nanjini dokode aimasuka?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Spanish Video: Conversaciones 1

Hello all, Chris here. Today we have the the first video in our Spanish Conversaciones series to share! The video features Claudia and Heidi discussing plans for the weekend. Enjoy! Comments welcome!

Preguntas sobre el video:

¿Qué van a hacer las mujeres durante el fin de semana?

¿Por qué irá la chica a Bloomington?

¿Qué dice la chica de IU y de los estudiantes?

¿Qué dice la chica de la comida y los restaurantes?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

News: The 1st Black Sea ELT Conference

The 1st Black Sea ELT Conference aims to provide TEFL professionals with opportunities for professional development through the exchange of ideas and practices in English Language Teaching and research, thus enable them to integrate their knowledge of current trends in the TEFL field with their ELT practices. We warmly invite everybody in the field of TEFL to be a part of this significant event. We hope that the discussions will assist the progress of TEFL in Turkey.

The deadline for conference registration is Oct. 1, 2010

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Spanish: Blog for Spanish Instructors

Hello again, Becky here!

I have provided the link below to the blog "Actualidades, blogeando para aprender".

If you don't know this blog, GO CHECK IT OUT! It is all pop culture, with communicative activities meant for use in the Spanish classroom. Current music w/cloze activities, weekly movie posters, current news, comic strips for creative writing, art, and more. There is a print edition magazine as well. Enjoy!

News: Conference on the Teaching of Languages (MUCTL) - Call for Papers

Hey all, Becky here!

Miami University is hosting a conference for Language Teachers on October 15th. See below for more information.

Share and showcase experiences, solutions, successes, and new trends in foreign language education

 Discover direction, practical ideas, and networking for experienced and new language educators
 All languages welcome: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Latin, Russian, Spanish, etc.

Friday, October 15th, 2010, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Miami University Voice of America Learning Center
7847 VOA Park Drive, West Chester, OH 45069

Co-sponsored by; the Department of Spanish and Portuguese (SPN); College of Arts and Science (CAS): Department of Teacher Education (EDT) School of Education, Health, and Society (EHS)

Keynote Speaker:
Our keynote speaker will be Martha Pero, named 2010 Teacher of the Year by the Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Language (CTFL) and past President of OFLA (Ohio Foreign Language Association).

Selected Topics:
Technology for Writing, Advanced Placement, Digital Portfolios, Assessing Speaking, Assessing writing, Second Language Reading, Making Accommodations, Grammar and Technology, Service Learning, Journaling, Getting involved with Culture, and more.

To register go to:

German: Useful Sites - Munich Webcams

Hello all, Chris here. Today I would like to share another useful website for German teachers. You can find that most websites for German cities feature webcams spread throughout the city so that one can view the city in near real-time. This is another fun way you can explore various cities and locations more with your students right in the classroom. Comments welcome!

Below is a link for Munich:

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Spanish: National Hispanic Heritage Month

Hello everybody, Claudia here,

I would like to share a great site which is a collaborative project of the Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.

Their theme for this year is:
“Heritage, Diversity, Integrity and Honor: The Renewed Hope of America”

I really like the description as well as all the resources they offer:

About National Hispanic Heritage Month

"Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.

The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402.

The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September18, respectively. Also, Columbus Day or Día de la Raza, which is October 12, falls within this 30 day period".

You should really check out their site and take a look for yourself!">

German Video: Freiburger Gespräche 1

Hello all, Chris here again. We are proud to present our third video in our German conversation series. This video also features Marek and Annna with Marek telling us a little bit about Freiburg! Check below the video for some comprehension questions! Comments welcome!

1) Wo liegt Freiburg?
2) Wie ist Freiburg?
3) Was denkt Marek über die Freiburger Universität?
4) Wie sind die Menschen im Süden?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

German: Oktoberfest - Wiesenhit 2010

Hello all, Chris here again. Today I would like to share a video from this year's Oktoberfest which is looking for this year's Wiesenhit. There are several videos one can find from each year's Oktoberfest including many songs. Many of these will feature a Bavarian dialect.

German Video: Hamburger Gespräche 1

Hello all, Chris here again. We are happy to present the second video in our conversation series. Here we have Anna and Marek talking about Hamburg. Below the video we have a short set of comprehension questions. Comments welcome!

1) Was macht Anna gerne am Abend?
2) Was macht Hamburg attracktiv?
3) Warum ist die größe der Stadt wichtig?
4) Wie ist die Universität Hamburg?
5) Wie sind die Menschen in Hamburg?

Monday, September 20, 2010

News: CDLC Fall 2010 Conference on Teaching and Learning to Near-Native Levels of Language Proficiency

Conference on Distinguished Language Studies

Linthicum, Maryland December 3-4, 2010

The Coalition of Distinguished Language Centers, the only international
organization dedicated to research and application of research in the area of
teaching and achieving native-like foreign-language proficiency, will be
holding its seventh annual symposium at the Westin Baltimore-Washington
Airport in Linthicum, Maryland December 3-4, 2010.

There will be several areas of focus: teaching methods and practices, language learning experiences, research, translation/interpretation, program
development/management, and assessment (proficiency, diagnostic, dynamic,
other). Whole panels may be suggested and abstracts submitted together, if
desired. The working language of the conference will be English. However,
presentations may be in any language, as long as there are enough
presentations in that language to form a panel. Abstracts should be written in
the language in which they will be presented and should be sent to the CDLC
Operations Director, Boris Shekhtman, via email ( no later
than October 1, 2010.

News: The Language Teacher's Toolbox Fall 2010 Conference at Purdue

Hello all, Chris here with some news about the fourth Language Teacher's Toolbox Conference coming up this October at Purdue. Read below for the call for papers:

Fall 2010 Language Teacher’s Toolbox Conference

This is an exciting time to be a world language educator! Regardless of which language we teach, it is evident that there is growing interest in world languages by students of all levels, whether they are complete beginners or have had some prior experience learning a language. Beginning as well as advanced language instructors are faced with the often daunting task of just how to effectively teach their languages while keeping students interested and motivated. The Language Teacher’s Toolbox Conference will be comprised of several short (approx. 15-20min.) presentations in which graduate students are invited to share various activities, teaching tips, and strategies, as well as any relevant research findings. These presentations will be representative of the spectrum of world languages offered at Purdue. Topics can include, but are not limited to the following:

• Attitudes, Experiences, and Practices of Students and Teachers
• Communicative Language Teaching & Theory
• Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL)
• Foreign Language Fun and Games
• Language, Creativity, and Imagination
• Language Identity and its Impact on Learning
• Meaning and Grammar
• Music and Foreign Language Teaching
• Role-playing activities
• Teaching Culture
• Teaching Tips and Strategies
• Technology and Teaching
• Total Physical Response (TPR) and Teaching Proficiency through Reading Storytelling (TPRS)

Applicants interested in presenting should provide a presentation description of no more than 100 words to the following email address ( no later than October 7, 2010. The workshops will take place on Saturday October 16 (from 10 am – ca. 1 pm) in Stanley Coulter. Announcements regarding session and presenter information will be provided in weekly emails leading up to the conference day. Room numbers with session and presenter information will be posted throughout Stanley Coulter. This is a great opportunity to expand your own repertoire of teaching skills as well as share your knowledge with fellow colleagues. Everyone is encouraged to apply and we look forward to seeing you there! Best wishes for a fruitful conference!

German Video: Oliver Pocher - Schwarzfahren

Hello all, Chris here. Today I would like to share a set of videos with Oliver Pocher who is riding in the German subway system without a ticket. This is called schwarzfahren in German. These two videos offer a humorous look at riding in this particular type of public transportation in Germany. You can help introduce your students to some key vocabulary such as the aforementioned schwarzfahren and Kontrolleur, and kontrollieren. This is a good opportunity to present your students with this particular false cognate. Ask the students if having your tickets "controlled" is the real meaning of this word in translation. These would be good videos to show in conjunction with the well known short film Schwarzfahrer.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Japanese: Music Video - YMCA -

Hi all, Junko desu.

There are lots of English songs covered to Japanese, meaning Japanese singers would sing the same song with Japanese lyrics. Here is an good example, "Young man". It would be interesting to have your students to see how lyrics are changed when singing in Japanese, and look for differences.

News: Teach Japan Conference

Hi all, Junko desu.

Today I wanted to share information of conference called Teach Japan Conference, which will be held on Oct 29th and 30th at DePaul University, Chicago IL.

This conference is dedicated to teaching Japanese language and culture, and more of pedagogy side of Japanese as a foreign language. Take a look at the schedule!

Panel 1-A
New Approaches to Introducing Japanese Culture In/Out of the Classroom

Elizabeth Lillehoj, DePaul University, Panel Chair

Joanne Bernardi, University of Rochester, NY
“‘Tourist Japan’: Identifying Japan in 20th Century Visual and Material Culture”

Linda H. Chance, University of Pennsylvania, PA
“Using Wikis to Enhance Student Engagement in the Japan Survey Course”

Dyron K. Dabney and Lynne Chytilo, Albion College, MI
“Pottery and Politics: Examining the Art and Politics of Tea Culture in Japan”

Carol Enns and Erin Davis, Cornell College, IA
“Addressing the Challenges of Short-Term Study Abroad in Japan”

Panel 1-B:
Collaboration with Faculty and Community

Nobuko Chikamatsu, DePaul University, Panel Chair

Noriko Fujioka-Ito and Gayle G. Elliott, University of Cincinnati, OH
“Enhancing Global Views and Japanese Language Abilities Through International Cooperative Education”

Rika Ito, St. Olaf College, MN
“Incorporation of Internships into the Curriculum: Experiences of Experiential Learning in Japan”

Akiko Kakutani and Yasumi Kuriya, Earlham College, IN
“Collaborative and Experiential Learning Projects in Japanese Studies”

Deborah Shamoon and Noriko Hanabusa, University of Notre Dame, IN
“Team Teaching as a Method for Bridging Advanced Japanese Language and Area Studies Courses”

Panel 2A -- Teaching Lessons from the Japanese Past

Kerry Ross, DePaul University, Panel Chair

Ethan Segal, Michigan State University, MI
“From Samurai to Sources: Teaching Critical Thinking in the Pre-modern Japanese History Classroom”

William Londo, Michigan State University, MI
“Zen and the Art Of Teaching Premodern Japanese Religion”

Elizabeth Oyler, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL
“Media and Messages: What Japan’s Medieval Narrative Arts Can Tell Us About Contemporary Culture”

Panel 2B -- Innovative Course Designs for Teaching Japan and Japanese

Mariko Moroishi Wei, Purdue University, Panel Chair

Nobuyoshi Asaoka, Grinnell College, IA
“Is Learners’ Autonomy Manipulable?: The Interactive Impact of Teacher-Allocated Partners”

Vanessa D. Dickerson, DePauw University, IN
“Fashioning a Course on the Japanese and African Americans”

Junko Ikeda Schwartzman, Purdue University, IN
“Designing a Speaking-Oriented Classroom through an Online Speaking Program

Chiaki Takagi, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, NC
“Interaction with Communities: Developing an International Service Learning Course”

Panel 3A -- Cultural Comprehension and Communicative Competence

Jason Christopher Jones, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Panel Chair

Anatoliy Anshin, Russian State University for the Humanities and Moscow International Higher Business School “MIRBIS,” Moscow
“Cultural Issues in Japanese Language Pedagogy”

Shinobu Anzai, United States Naval Academy, MD
“A Profile of Japan: The Search for Core Cultural Values”

Monika Dix, Saginaw Valley State University, MI
“Japanese Language and Culture: What IS Culture and How Can IT BE Used To Enrich Communicative Competence?”

Misumi Sadler and Jung Sun Kim, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL
“An ‘Intercultural’ Learning Community: the Culture-Learning Discussion Forum for the First-Year Japanese Language Course”

Panel 3B -- Murakami Haruki, Genji Monogatari, and Beyond

James Dorsey, Dartmouth College, Panel Chair

Keisuke Hayashi, Hosei University Junior and Senior High School, Tokyo
“Experience of Translating Murakami Haruki in the Classroom”

Tomoko Kato, College of William and Mary, VA
“An Experiment of Bringing Genji Monogatari into Advanced Japanese Class”

Kimberly Kono, Smith College, MA
“Reading Japan and Otherness”

Rika Saito, Western Michigan University, MI
“What and How Can Haruki Murakami Teach in Classroom?”: The Need for Bridging Language and Content”

Panel 4A -- Cold War, Ideology, Japanese Studies

Miho Matsugu, DePaul University, Panel Chair

Allison Newman Frickert, Mt. San Antonio College, CA
“Teaching Comparative Pacific Empires: Japan and the United States”

Jason Goulah, DePaul University
“Soka Kyoiku in U.S. Higher Education: Pedagogical Possibilities Between Schools of Education and Japanese Studies Programs”

Reginald Jackson, The University of Chicago, IL
“Rethinking Japanese Performance in the Post-Cold War Classroom”

Robert Tierney, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL
“Forgetting and Remembering Empire in Japanese Literary Studies”

Panel 4B -- Pedagogical Challenges in Heterology and Historiography in the U.S. Classroom

Yuki Miyamoto, DePaul University, Panel Chair

Mahua Bhattacharya, Elizabethtown College, PA
“Articulating the Process of Articulation: Treading the Outcomes Discourse”

Rose Bundy, Kalamazoo College, MI
“Commemoration, Memory, Contested History in East Asia and the U.S.: Teaching the Smithsonian Enola Gay and Yasukuni Controversies in a Sophomore Seminar”

Tanya S. Maus, Wittenberg University, OH
“Engaging Japanese History in Ohio”

John Timothy Wixted, Arizona State University, AZ
“A Modest Attempt at Teaching Languages and Cultures in a Fourth-Year-Level Course, Readings in Japanese History”

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Spanish: Bicentenario de México

Hello everybody, Claudia here,

Mexico is celebrating its 200th independence day.

You can follow this link for fun activities taking place on September 15th and 16th in different regions of México.

This is a nice video to show students when talking about Mexico's independence day, it explains everything very clearly. You can show the video and have follow up questions for your students to discuss in groups and you can also have students compare it with the US's independence day.


"Languages: The Original Social Networks"

September 30 - October 2, 2010
Sheraton Raleigh Hotel, Downtown Raleigh, North Carolina

Don't miss out on a great FLANC conference! They have expanded their Workshop Schedule to include Thursday morning and afternoon sessions as well as Saturday afternoon sessions. The workshops are sure to suit diverse interests and various languages and levels. The additional workshops should mean that teachers who are unable to take the day off on Thursday will have the opportunity to tap the wealth of material that Friday sessions and Saturday workshops and sessions can offer.

German: Berlin Wordle Pic

Hello all, Chris here. Today we have another entry in our series of vocabulary images using Wordle. This time we have a set of vocabulary for Berlin! Many thanks to Jason for setting this one up for us!

News: 300 Posts!

Hello all, Chris here. We have now reached 300 posts! Good work everyone! Next stop 500!

Monday, September 13, 2010

News: ACTFL Webinars

Hello everyone, Chris here again with some exciting news from ACTFL. They are now offering a series of Webinars (or web-seminars) called Engaging Students in Interpersonal Communication. Check out the link below for more information:

German: Berliner Gespräche Video 1

Hello all, Chris here! Today I have some exciting news! We have the first video in our German conversation series! This video features Joe and Dan talking about some of the interesting sites to see in Berlin! Comments welcome!

1) Woher kommt Joe?
2) Wo hat Joe in Berlin gewohnt?
3) Welche Sehenswürdigkeiten gibt es in Berlin?
4) Wie heisst die Strasse in Berlin, die Joe mit New Yorks 5th Avenue vergleicht?

Thursday, September 9, 2010

News: New Team Member

Hello all, Chris here with some exciting news! Today we are adding a new team member for Spanish! Let's welcome Julie who will be providing us excellent content!

German: Munich Shopping Link

Hello all, Chris here. Today I have another intersting link for Munich. This Friday the stores in Munich stay open late and they are offering many attractions in addition to sales such as live music, performances, circus acts, and more! Teachers can use this to inform their students on differences between stores and shopping in Germany and here in the U.S.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

German: Oktoberfest Info

Hello fellow German teachers, Chris here. Today I have a link which features information on just about anything you would want to know about Oktoberfest, which of course is coming up in the not too distant future!

News: Southeast TESOL Regional Conference 2010

TESOL educators from seven SE states will gather Thursday-Saturday, September 23-25, at the Hilton Miami Downtown for presentations on second langauge teaching. Keynotes will include Kate Kinsella and Neil Anderson among others. The SETESOL conference includes over 200 sessions and workshops, publisher exhibits, and a special technology strand; plenary sessions with cutting edge discipline leaders; a complimentary reception and optional South Beach/Biscayne Bay evening outings.

News: 2010 KWLA Fall Conference

The 2010 Fall KWLA invites you to join them September 16 - 18 at the Hilton Downtown Lexington, Kentucky, to hear success stories, discover challenges, and find solutions for teaching world languages in today's classroom. KWLA offers you a wide variety of sessions and workshops touching all levels of instruction and covering numerous topics of second language acquisition. You'll leave the conference energized with ideas you can use in the classroom and connections that will provide you support throughout the year.

News: AATG Autumn 2010 Newsletter

Hello all, Chris here with some news for fellow German teachers. The autumn 2010 edition of the AATG newsletter is now available. Check the following link for the newsletter, or better yet, sign up for it!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

German Music: Die Prinzen - Klaus und Gabi

Hello all, Chris here. Today I would like to share a video for the song 'Gabi und Klaus' from Die Prinzen. The Prinzen were at one point part of the Thomanerchor in Leipzig and this is a nice addition to any chapter on Leipzig. Teachers can familiarize their students with the group and their other songs, as well as German pop music. The video and lyrics are below:

Band website:

Gabi Und Klaus lyrics

Uh hu huh ba ba ba

uh hu huh ba ba ba

uh hu huh ba ba ba

uh hu huh ba ba ba.

Gabi hat Sehnsucht
Sehnsucht nach Klaus.
Doch Klaus sagt kühl nur: Es ist aus!
Gabi muß weinen
ihr Herz wird so schwer

doch Klaus sagt kühl nur: Ich will dich nicht mehr.
Uh Uh Uh Uh

Gabi ist einsam
schrecklich allein

sie denkt an Klaus und sagt sich: Er ist so gemein.
Will ihn vergessen
und damit das geschieht

rennt sie durch den Regen und singt dieses Lied:

Das Leben ist grausam und schrecklich gemein

das Leben ist grausam und Klaus ist ein Schwein.
Das Leben ist grausam und schrecklich gemein

das Leben ist grausam und Klaus ist ein Schwein.

Doch plötzlich merkt Klaus
wie er Gabi liebt.
Er geht zu ihr
daß sie ihm vergibt.
Er steht vor ihr
wird vor Verlegenheit rot

doch sie sagt kühl nur: "Hau ab
du Idiot!"

Klaus ist jetzt einsam
schrecklich allein.
Er denkt an Gabi und sagt sich: "Sie ist so gemein!"
Will sie vergessen
und damit das geschieht

rennt er durch den Regen und singt dieses Lied:

Das Leben ist grausam und schrecklich gemein

das Leben ist grausam und Gabi ein Schwein.

German: Useful Sites: Focus Online

Hello all, Chris here. Today I would like to share another excellent online resource for German teachers. The website for Focus magazine features the latest news and several links which German teachers can use to create assignments or simply add to their lesson plans.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

German: Music - Dietrich 'Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin'

Hello all, Chris here. Today I would like to share a video for the Marlene Dietrich song Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin. This is a song that we cover in our chapter on Berlin as well as some general background information on Dietrich herself.

I would play the song once and then distribute the following worksheet to students:

Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin – Marlene Dietrich

Ich hab noch einen ____ in Berlin
deswegen muß ich da nächstens wieder hin
die Seligkeiten vergangener ____
sie sind alle immer noch in diesem kleinen Koffer

Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin
das bleibt auch so und das hat seinen Sinn
auf diese Weise lonht sich die ____
und wenn ich Sehnsucht hab dann fahr ich wieder hin

Wunderschön ists in Paris
auf der Rue Madleen
schön ist es im Mai in Rom
durch die ____ zu gehen
Oder eine Sommernacht
still beim ____ in Wien
doch ich denk wenn ihr auch lacht
heute noch an Berlin

Ich hab noch einen Koffer in _____

Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin
deswegen muß ich da nächstens _____ hin
die Seligkeiten vergangener Zeiten
sie sind alle immer noch in diesem kleinen Koffer

Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin

This contains the lyrics for the song with several vocabulary words that are missing. Play the song a second time and have students fill in the missing vocabulary. It is also worth discussing the meaning of the song with students, especially in relation to Dietrich's career.

Was bedeutet es noch einen Koffer in Berlin zu haben?
Mit welchen anderen Städten wird Berlin verglichen?

Hopefully the above activity will be useful for you! Comments welcome!


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