The Carolyn A. and Peter S. Lynch School of Education


RLRL5597         Foreign Language Pedagogy
EDUC6303         Foreign Language Pedagogy

Fall 2018


Instructor:  Andréa M. Javel   

Office Location: Lyons 204a

Office Hours: M-W-F, 9:15 to 9:45, 1:00 - 2:30 and 3:00 - 4:00 (for Foreign Language Pedagogy students only and by appointment)

Phone:  x.23839 (617-552-3839 from off campus)                                                                                        



Lynch School of Education Themes


Programs in Teacher Education at Boston College have five unifying themes.  Although no single course in teacher education addresses all the themes in depth, each Teacher Candidate will have explored and reflected on all the themes prior to and during the full practicum.  The Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (ESE) Professional Standards for Teachers as well as the Boston College themes are aligned to all practicum requirements and to the BC-Candidate Assessment of Performance (BC-CAP).


      1.   The 5 unifying themes are:


Promoting social justice: At B.C.  we see teaching as an activity with political dimensions, and we see all educators as responsible for challenging inequities in the social order and working with others to establish a more just society.


Constructing knowledge: At B.C. we regard all teachers and students as active agents in their own learning, who draw on prior knowledge and experience to construct new knowledge in interaction with texts, materials, and other learners.


Inquiring into practice: At B.C. the curriculum is intended to bridge the gap between research and practice by fostering critical reflection and by treating classrooms and schools as sites for teacher research and other forms of practitioner inquiry.


Meeting the needs of diverse learners: At B.C. we believe that one of  the central challenges of teaching is meeting the needs of all learners; especially as the school population becomes more diverse in race, culture, ethnicity, language background, and ability/disability.


Collaborating with others: At B.C.  prospective teachers are encouraged to collaborate with each of the stakeholders in the educational process (other teachers, administrators, human services professionals, parents, community members) and with fellow students and professors.


      2.   The Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (ESE) Professional

            Standards for Teachers (PST):


Effective January 2014, ESE identified the following Four Professional Standards for Teachers. All course work and field experiences are aligned to the PSTs in ways that are developmentally appropriate in terms of introduction to, practice with, and demonstration of each Standard and performance indicator.  Standards 5 and 6 have been added, with ESE approval, to reflect B.C. themes and mission and are essential components of the BC-CAP during the full practicum experience.



      1.   Curriculum, Planning & Assessment : Promotes the learning and growth of all students by providing high

            quality and coherent instruction, designing and administering authentic and meaningful student             

            assessments, analyzing student performance and growth data, using this data to improve instruction,

            providing students with constructive feedback on an on-going basis, and continuously refining learning


      2.   Teaching All Students : Promotes the learning and growth of all students through instructional practices

            that establish high expectation, create a safe and effective classroom environment, and demonstrate

            cultural proficiency.

      3.   Family and Community Engagement : Promotes the learning and growth of all students through effective

            partnerships with families, caregivers, community members, and organizations.

      4.   Professional Culture

      5.   Demonstrates an Inquiry Stance in a Daily Practice

      6.   Promotes & Practices Principles of Social Justice Teaching


Full descriptions of the PSTs and effectiveness indicators are available at:



General Policies


BC Students with a Disability or Suspected Disability:

If you are a student with a documented disability seeking reasonable accommodations in this course, please contact Kathy Duggan (617) 552-8093, at the Connors Family Learning Center regarding learning disabilities, or the Disability Services Office at (617) 552-3470, also at regarding all other types of disabilities. Advance notice and appropriate documentation are required for accommodations.


BC Academic Integrity: 

The pursuit of knowledge can proceed only when scholars take responsibility and receive credit for their work.  Recognition of individual contributions to knowledge and of the intellectual property of others builds trust within the University and encourages the sharing of ideas that is essential to scholarship.  Similarly, the educational process requires that individuals present their own ideas and insights for evaluation, critique, and eventual reformation.  Presentation of others’ work as one’s own is not only intellectual dishonesty, but also undermines the education process.


Plagiarism, that is, failure to properly acknowledge sources written or electronic, used for verbatim quotations or ideas, is a violation of academic integrity.  Each student is responsible for learning and using proper methods of paraphrasing and footnoting, quotation, and other forms of citation, to ensure that the original author, speaker, illustrator, or course of the material used is clearly acknowledged.  See the following link for additional details about Academic Integrity:






Course Goals and Objectives


This course provides students with a historical overview of the evolution of  foreign language pedagogy, recent research in second-language acquisition and assessment in the light of the National Standards for Foreign Language Learning and the Massachusetts Frameworks.   Emphasis is placed on developing classroom techniques, creating and implementing lesson plans for teaching to the five goals of Communication, Culture, Connections, Comparison, and Community, as well as constructing tests that mirror what is being taught.  Activities include language specific contrastive analysis, self-evaluation of each student's language proficiency (if teaching a living language) as measured by ACTFL's oral proficiency scale, a review of current language-teaching methods, micro-teaching and and hands-on experience using electronic media. This course is particularly recommended for students who are planning to teach a foreign language and fulfills the Massachusetts certification requirements in Foreign Language Teaching Methods, grades 5 - 12.



Readings:  Required and Supplementary

Course Schedule



Topics and Themes



 Introduction to course
Why teach / learn a foreign language? 
What makes a successful foreign language teacher and classroom?   
Language Learning - Your Story
Language teaching in the US
Common Myths About Language Learning and Second Language Learners
The 5 C's
ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines and their impact
Going for 90%
Massachusetts Standards
Skim chapter titles in textbook.  Which ones are familiar or pique your interest?  Discuss in pairs/or small groups.

 Nothing to prepare for today!


 Labor Day!  No class!



For today's class read:
Shrum and Glisan

  • Preliminary Chapter: Becoming Familiar with the Profession and Expectations for Language Teachers;
  • Chapter 1: Understanding Language Learning Through Second Language Acquisition Theory and Research;
  • Chapter 2: Contextualizing Language Instruction to Address Goals of the Standards for Learning Languages
Guest Speaker: Brian O'Connor, Professor of the Practice in Romance Languages and Literatures, on Teaching in the Target Language


  • Be ready to discuss key terms and concepts from the chapters read. 
  • Journal 1: Say what the following organizations are and summarize them in one sentence: MLA, ACTFL, ADFL, CALICO, CARLA, TESOL and FLTEACH.
  • Which additional organizations listed under "Conceptual Orientation" on the student companion site apply most specifically to the language you will be teaching?
  •  What is MaFla and where is it's conference in 2018? What is the cost to attend for students? 

  • What role does affect play in second language acquisition?  
  • What is scaffolding and why is it important? 
  • Why is it important to contextualize foreign language instruction?  
  • What was your own second language learning experience like? Was the pedagogy your teacher(s) used in line with the research?


 For today's class read: Shrum and Glisan

  • Chapter 3: Planning Standards-Based Instruction Using Backward Design
  • Skim Chapters 4 and 5 (based on the level you plan to teach): Connecting Language Learning to the Elementary School Curriculum and/or Integrating Cultures and Comparisons in Middle Level Education and Beyond
  •  Peer-to-Peer Sharing of Micro-Teaching Outline
  • Guest Speaker: Maria Sira, Middle School French and Spanish Teacher at the Peabody and Sanborn Middle Schools in Concord, MA.

  • Micro-Teaching Outline - fill out the Micro-Teaching Outline (found in our shared folder on Google Drive) of an activity you would like to "micro-teach" next time.  Be ready to "pitch" your idea to peers for feedback.
  • Journal 2: What is backward design?  Have you used it before?  In what context?    Go to the student companion site of the textbook, click on "View and Reflect", then on "Activities".  Watch a video and use the guiding questions to reflect on it in writing.


 For today's class read: Schrum and Glisan

  • Chapter 6: Using an Interactive Approach to Develop Interpretive Communication
  • Chapter 7:  PACE: A Story-based Approach for Dialogic Inquiry about Form and Meaning

  • Micro-teaching #1


  • Be ready to discuss key terms and concepts from the chapters read. 
  • Journal 3: What are the two kinds of interpretive communication?  How are they different as processes?  Provide authentic examples of both kinds of interpretive communication in the language you plan on teaching.  Feel free to cut and paste excerpts of text, URL's, images and mp3's to your document. Read over the Case Study on p. 203 of your textbook and react to it in writing. 


 For today's class: Read the ACTFL proficiency guidelines in the language you plan on teaching.

  • Have and record a 10 minute conversation with a native speaker (or non-native speaker, if you are a native speaker of the language you with to teach).  Listen to your recording and decide where you think you are on the ACTFL scale, providing examples from your conversation.  (Let me know if you have trouble finding a conversation partner and I'll help you locate one.)
  • Fill out the Foreign Language Anxiety Scale.


  • Be ready to discuss the ACTFL proficiency guidelines and the Foreign Language Anxiety Scale. 
  • Journal 4: Write a journal reflection in reaction to your conversation with a native speaker (or non-native speaker).  Based on this conversation, where would you place yourself on the ACTFL scale of Oral Proficiency?  Provide examples from the conversation that support your claim.  What aspects of your speaking do you think you need to improve in order to increase in fluency?  
  • If you are a native speaker of the language you wish to teach, reflect on your conversation, focusing on the moments when the non-native speaker appeared confused or lost.  What strategies did you use to help them to understand you?  Did you notice anything about your interlocutor's body language or language proficiency when he/she did not seem to comprehend.




For today's class Read: Schrum and Glisan
  • Chapter 8, Developing Oral and Written Interpersonal Communication

  • Peer-to-Peer Sharing of Micro-Teaching Outline

  • Journal 5: Which of the productive skills (oral and written communication) were the most challenging for you when you learned (or taught) a foreign language?  Go to Chapter 8 on the Cengage student companion site click on "Conceptual Orientation" and choose one activity to analyze.  What's are its strengths?  Weaknesses?
  • Micro-teaching outline #2.


For today's class Read: Schrum and Glisan
  • Read : Chapter 9, Developing Oral and Written Presentational Communication
  • Micro-teaching #2


For today's class read: Schrum and Glisan
  • Chapter 10: Addressing Diverse Needs of Learners in the Language Classroom

  • Journal 7: Go to Chapter 10 on the student companion site, click on "View and Reflect", choose a video to view, view it and respond to questions listed for that video.


For today's class read:

  • Peer-to-Peer Sharing of Micro-Teaching Outline

  • Be ready to discuss the reading and share ideas of how to promote social justice in the foreign language classroom. 
  • Micro-teaching outline #3 on a film/video in the language you will be teaching (or about the historical context if you are teaching a classical language.)


For today's class read:

Micro-teaching #3

Guest speaker: Cynthia Bravo, Director of the Language Laboratory, Lyons 313

  • Bring a list of your favorite foreign language films to share with your classmates. (Or English Language film if you are going to be teaching ELL's.)
  • Add your favorite apps and websites to the "Foreign Language Teacher's Toolbox" in Canvas.




For today's class read:
Why teach literature in the foreign language classroom?
Guest speaker: Sarah Bilodeau, Rindge Avenue Upper School, Cambridge, MA

  • Bring a short piece of literature that you would like to teach.  We will work collaboratively to design pre-reading, while reading and post-reading activities for your favorite literary texts.
  • Hand in 2 scripted observations + answers to follow up questions.


Your 3-day lesson plan.  Presentations!

  • Hand in your 3-day lesson plan, including any ancillary documents.  Lesson plans may be submitted and shared on Google Drive.
  • Hand in analysis of textbook /eBook or free source online language program.  If you are analyzing a textbook, include a paragraph or two on the companion site that the publishers have developed to accompany the text. (Can be handed in today or electronically by 12/9.)


Foreign Language Pedagogy -RLRL5597 or EDUC6303    


1. Class participation
2. Reflection journals and outlines for micro-teaching 20%
3. Micro-teaching presentations and presentation of 3-day lesson plan
4. Analysis of textbook / e-book or free source online language website
5. 3 day lesson plan (These plans can be the same ones created for your P3 or Grad P1.) & Outline of 3-day lesson plan
6. Observe 2 classes (1 Elementary and 1 Intermediate level language classes at Boston College or two different levels of the same language at your school, if you are doing a GP1 or a P3). Script classes and respond to evaluation questions below.  These are taken from the Lynch School of Education's Lesson Plan Template.  If you will be observing BC classes, I am happy to put you in touch with the appropriate faculty. 
7. Contribution of 5 apps or websites to our "Foreign Language Teachers Toolbox" on Google Drive

Course Requirement Descriptions (Further details below) 


Due Dates

Assignment and Themes

9/10,   9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/15 10/22, 10/29

 Reflection Journals (7)  Inquiring into Practice
Students will read chapters in the textbook and/or view videos or other resources on the student companion website and analyze what they have read in light of their own experiences as learners and teachers. 

 9/17, 10/15, 11/5

 Micro-teaching outlines (3) - Constructing Knowledge and Collaborating

 9/24, 10/22, 11/12

 Micro-teaching presentations (3) - Constructing Knowledge and Collaborating


 Scripted observations of 2 classes - Constructing Knowledge, Collaborating and Inquiring into Practice
Observe 2 classes (1 Elementary and 1 Intermediate level language classes) at BC or in your school if you are doing a Graduate P1 or a an Undergraduate P3.  Script the lessons and respond to evaluation questions below.  They are paraphrased from the Lynch School of Education's Lesson Plan Template.  


What the teacher or students did

Post observation questions:

1.  What did the students learn from this lesson? 
2.  Were students actively engaged with the

     lesson?  Cite examples. 

3.  Were the materials/visuals/aids appropriate?  Why?  Why not?

4.  What do I think was the most effective part of the lesson?

5.  What do you think students found most challenging about this lesson?  How do you know?  Cite specific examples. 


Presentation of 3-day lesson plan, including overview and interactive presentation of 1 or 2 activities from the lesson.  - Constructing Knowledge, Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners and Promoting Social Justice

Hand in analysis of textbook /eBook or free source online language program.  If you are analyzing a textbook, include a paragraph or two on the companion site that the publishers have developed to accompany the text. - Constructing Knowledge


 In computing grades, the following numerical equivalents for the 12 letter grades will be used:

A 4.00 (95 -100) B- 2.67 (80 - 82) D+ 1.33 (67 - 69)
A- 3.67 ( 91 - 94) C+ 2.33 (77 - 79) D1.00 (64 - 66)
B+ 3.33 (87 - 90) C 2.00  (74 -76) D-0.67 (60 - 63)
B 3.00 (83 - 86) C- 1.67 (70 - 73) F 0.00 (below 60)

NOTE:  Incompletes will turn to an “F” by March 1, 2018.


“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.” - Malala Yousafzai

“Good teaching cannot be reduced to technique; good
ing comes from the identity and integrity of the teacher.” Parker J. Palmer, The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner Landscape of a Teacher's Life

“One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings.  The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital raw element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child."
- Carl Jung, psychiatrist (1975-1961)  

language learning affect attitudes and beliefs about language learning and about other cultures - See more at:  Academic Integrity: Plagiarism is a serious issue and is treated as such.   Any and all work submitted in this course must be each student's own work.  Submitting work done by another student, all or in part and/or work taken verbatim from another source is considered to be plagiarism.  The copious use of Google Translator or other online translation sites is not recommended and will not necessarily lead to coherent discourse in a foreign language.  Students may, of course, include quotations in their work, but the author(s) must be clearly indicated and in quotation marks.  Plagiarism or cheating can lead to disciplinary action involving the student's Dean.
Resources: Wikipedia is good for an overview of a given topic, but should not be relied upon as a bibliographical source. 

1. Classroom Participation and Micro-Teaching 
All other languages, please see me to discuss possible texts ASAP.

The micro-teaching segments can comprise part of your three-day-lesson-plan (see #2 and #3 below). We will discuss this in depth as the semester progresses.  Prepare micro-teaching segments for a class you have not taught yet (if this is your first year teaching, you may want to prepare these segments for items to be taught in the last three weeks of class this semester or for the start of next semester - if you are teaching the same level you did last year, do activities for a different level).

Add your favorite apps and websites to the "Foreign Language Teacher's Toolbox" in Canvas. 

2. Textbook /e-Book / online Free Source program analysis:
Analyze a textbook, either at the college, high school or middle school level, discussing strengths and weaknesses. 
Be familiar with the National Standards, as well as Massachusetts Standards prior to doing this activity.
Briefly describe your school or college: type of students/instructors, length of course, facilities, etc.
State the philosophy of the text. Does the text do what it claims to do?
Address the treatment of the four basic skills, the role of culture, and vocabulary and grammar presentations.
Include a discussion about the types of activities frequently used in the text.
Assuming that all texts need to be supplemented in some way, state how this text would need to be supplemented.
How does the text address the National Standards?
Discuss any problems or strong points relating to sexism, stereotyping, etc.
State why you would or wouldn't recommend this text for adoption and give supporting evidence from course readings and other sources.
Approximately 5 pages (double-spaced).

3. 3 day lesson plan (These plans can be the same ones created for your P3 or P1, but written in the target language except for Latin).  You will prepare three days of detailed lesson plans based on a current foreign language textbook / e-book or Free Source program (the same one selected for #1, above) and using the Lynch School of Education Lesson Plan Template.  In these lessons you will introduce both new vocabulary and functions (incluing underlying grammatical structures), plus at least one related cultural topic to be stressed.  Remember that communicative language teaching requires the use of the target language, authentic contexts, realia and real communication between teacher and student as well as between students.  There should be teacher input, opportunities for controled practice as well as opportunities for more open-ended, creative exploration of functions, vocabulary and culture.  When you submit your lesson plan, you should also include the following, if pertinent.
4. Observe 2 classes (1 Elementary and 1 Intermediate level language classes) at BC or in your school if you are doing a Graduate P1 or a an Undergraduate P3.  Script the lessons and respond to evaluation questions below.  They are paraphrased from the Lynch School of Education's Lesson Plan Template. 
Guidelines for being a good observer: Please arrive on time, introduce yourself to the instructor, take a seat off to the side or back, and thank them when finished.  If you speak a language other than French, Italian, or Spanish, please observe an Elementary class. Consult Syllabi to avoid exams and quizzes. When observing, script what happened in the class and add your own comments.