Viola Davis

Viola Davis in speaking about her profession said:

“I became an artist, and thank God I did, because we are the only profession that celebrates what it means to live a life.”

I would add that we in the field of foreign language education have a chance at getting in on that concept of celebrating life with our students. We just can’t get too carried away with teaching the language and remember why we are in the classroom with those kids in the first place. In my opinion it’s not to teach them the language. That is second. It is to use language to help them celebrate what it means to live a life and in the process to help them celebrate theirs. That’s what comprehensible input can do for us professionally. It is not just a better way to teach, it is a way to teach that involves the whole person, addressing not just the intellectual development of the child but also the social side. Ironically, when we do that more and more in our classroom, when we help kids in that way – all the kids not just the white ones – they make great gains in the language. I am so thankful for Stephen Krashen helping me figure out a way to reach my students in ways that go beyond mere learning. Thank you, Stephen!



4 thoughts on “Viola Davis”

  1. Thank you, Ben! When I was listening to her speech I was thinking, “Hey, I get to do that too!” Thanks for putting this into words and for understanding.

  2. Without that piece, why are we even in this line of work? All we do should be to reach kids. Who cares if a few of them can parrot “knowledge” back at us? I did that for a quarter of a century w AP French. Scores meant so much to me. But over all those years I always made sure that my kids read the Petit Prince to have to work off of themes for the writing portion of the AP Lit exam, even if it wasn’t on the reading list. Some of it sank in over the years. We are here to help each other, and that includes kids if are put in classrooms. We help them and then anything else like test scores, etc. after that, it’s gravy. Thanks Emeka. Sorry about the mini-rant there.

  3. I said to myself “I get to celebrate life, too!” when I heard the Oscars’ speech.
    Do actors know that we as WL teachers also fly our freak flags? I’m Ok w/keeping it a secret.

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