I Forgot

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6 thoughts on “I Forgot”

  1. Robert….Danke! Just about to start a travel unit for CIS German after doing Michael reisst nach Wien. I obviously could translate this myself but …..if you already have it, why do the work, right?
    Could you share the German version via Google or in some other way?
    Danke nochmals, Julie in MN

  2. Wait…did yo say that you have a class that is a combination 3-4-AP, and also has 38 students in it? How in the world are you handling that? Isn’t AP like a whole different animal?

    1. Welcome to my world, Angie. I have two sections of German 1 (40 students each), two sections of German 2 (34 students each), which leaves one section of German 3-4-AP. It is definitely challenging, and I will admit that I do not give students a true AP experience but rely on self-motivation and after-school “study sessions” to do some of the AP stuff.
      I possibly should not offer an AP course because their goals are not really my goals. My goals for my students are for them to
      1. Have a positive experience in the language so that they want to continue acquiring it after high school
      2. Know how languages are acquired so that they can a) design their own acquisition program and b) advocate for themselves in a classroom setting
      3. Become “micro fluent” so that they can have a basic conversation with a native speaker after only a short time of language instruction
      4. Be able, at the end of four years, to go to a German-speaking country and communicate with native speakers in addition to having cultural sensitivity as well as historical, geographical, and political awareness
      5. Have enough confidence to talk to native speakers when they meet them
      I simply do not worry about the whole testing game.
      I do differentiate instruction among the levels, but as others with mixed-level classes have noted, some of the greatest gains are made by the “advanced students” as they hear and read language geared to the “less advanced students”. There are things I can do better, and I am continually working to improve my instruction, but until I get a class that is composed of all AP students, I will be unable to provide them with a “pure” AP experience. Nonetheless, my AP Course Syllabus – which notes the accommodations necessary in a mixed-level class and a rotating A/B curriculum, was approved by College Board on first submission.
      I have received what I consider to be validation of my approach many times over: students regularly reporting the surprise of native German speakers when my students address them and the fun of speaking with them; students who have gone on exchange programs and reported great success (as well as being more advanced in language use than other students); students who report positive college experiences with German; students who “recruit” for my classes by telling their friends to take German at Pacifica – even years after they have graduated (Tonight at our homecoming game, a former student who graduated in 2004 came and talked to me about doing that.); tales from brothers and sisters who have gone to Germany with a student or former student and been amazed at how well they communicate and navigate in the language; comments from parents about children using German at home (even from parents of German 1 students at our Back to School Night this week). So, as close as I am to retirement (potentially 3-4 years), I am not going to be making a wholesale change to what I do at the “upper levels” of instruction.

      1. Great statement, Robert.
        I want to take these goals with me to a FL district-wide articulation meeting next Friday.
        Too bad AP does not have your goals. It would be great, on top of all the other validation you receive, to have the College Board validate lifelong language learning and interaction with native speakers. By the way, what are the goals of the AP course? Besides 1) passing or excelling on the AP exam and 2) perpetuating itself.
        Those are huge numbers.
        I am glad you still have 3-4 years to share your insights while still actively teaching. I was thinking it was only 1-2…and I still have so much to learn. Hopefully, you will still be connected after retirement.

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