2018 Presentation Details

Read all about our powerful presentation lineup!
3 Simple and Easy Speaking Assessments - No Muss, No Fuss, Lots of Success. (1 hour)

3 Simple and Easy Speaking Assessments - No Muss, No Fuss, Lots of Success. (1 hour)

Scott Benedict

As language teachers, we all dread speaking assessments.

They take too long and take even longer to grade.

Not anymore!

In this presentation, you will walk away with 3 simple and easy speaking assessments that can be done in one class period and truly measure interpersonal and presentational language proficiency using clear and simple rubrics.

4 Steps to Reader's Theater: Flow creates pictures in their heads (1 hour)

4 Steps to Reader's Theater: Flow creates pictures in their heads (1 hour)

Karen Rowan

Backward Planning to pre-teach vocabulary, Acting out the story, All the World’s a Stage and Reading. Teaching students to act out reading selections and see pictures in their heads like movies rather than translation and decoding is essential to creating pleasure readers. The step-by-step easy process to selecting and conducting a reader’s theater experience.

10 Shortcuts to X-treme Personalization (1 hour)

10 Shortcuts to X-treme Personalization (1 hour)

Karen Rowan

The short version of the full day workshop on spinning a story on your feet gives multiple ways to gather personalized information from students and what to do with it. Student interest inventories, PQAs, and personalized mini-stories are only the beginning.

A Highly Differentiated, Easy Approach to Teaching Heritage Learners of Spanish (1 hour)

A Highly Differentiated, Easy Approach to Teaching Heritage Learners of Spanish (1 hour)

Michael Peto

Teaching a course for heritage learners of Spanish does not mean you have to abandon everything you know about language acquisition! This presentation is a birds-eye view of how a CI teacher has structured a year in an extremely heterogeneous classroom. Students in my heritage learner classes enter with reading levels from 1st grade to college level, all in the same class. Learn activities that will work with any level of reader, develop goals that will move all students forward and become familiar with the mistakes to avoid when teaching heritage learners.

AFTER the conferences: Daily TPRS Self-Coaching (1 hour)

AFTER the conferences: Daily TPRS Self-Coaching (1 hour)

Karen Rowan

After summer conferences and coaching, Self-Coaching is the way to continue improving your TPRS technique throughout the year. This process is the result of consulting with all of the Fluency Fast teachers about how they got better at TPRS. What they said was that they kept experimenting, practicing and making adjustments in their classes between summer conferences. Checklists, observation forms, self-reflection and student tally sheets will help you maintain progress throughout the year.

Brain Breaks! EVERYONE benefits! (1 hour)

Brain Breaks! EVERYONE benefits! (1 hour)

Annabelle Allen

ACTFL says we should be spending 90% of class time in the TL. That means our students are demanded to be active listeners and participants in a highly rigorous environment. Brain Breaks can be used as classroom management tools, and enthusiasm and community builders! Since this conference doesn’t allow us to participate in demonstrations, videos of students of various ages in various classes will be included. Walk away with a tool belt full of awesome Brain Breaks you can start implementing right away!

Bringing Reading to Life (1 hour)

Bringing Reading to Life (1 hour)

Elicia Cárdenas

Think you are not “zany” enough to dramatize a text? Use actors. And simple props. Watch a middle school teacher use a “boring” short text and bring it to life. Students forget they are re-reading a text because it is just too exciting to watch their friends.

Character to Literacy to Story and Back Again to Literacy (3 hours)

Character to Literacy to Story and Back Again to Literacy (3 hours)

Tina Hargaden

See a demonstration and explanation of a sequence of instructional strategies that can be repeated over and over to provide your class tons of CI that channels their creativity into beloved characters, stories, and class artifacts. You will see a demonstration of an instructional sequence that first creates a character, then reviews the language used in its creation through student artwork and Write and Discuss, then provides a shared text to use for whole-class literacy activities. Then you will see how to spin a story out of the text you created with your class, make a video retell of the story with your student actors, and then go through the cycle again to review a two-panel comic strip of the story, create a new reading using Write and Discuss, and do more in-depth literacy activities with the story. Learn ideas for using the artwork, videos, and stories to create additional input for your class.

CI in the Elementary Classroom (2 hours)

CI in the Elementary Classroom (2 hours)

Amy Vander Deen

How can we adapt CI activities for young learners, especially those who have not yet learned to read? Discover strategies for providing compelling input to preschool and elementary students. Explore classroom management, brain breaks, games, asking and telling stories, teaching culture, co-creating comprehensible picture books, and more!

Circling Made Easy (1 hour)

Circling Made Easy (1 hour)

Terry Waltz

Circling is a great tool to have in your CI toolbelt, but until now it’s had a bad reputation as being “hard to learn”. Come see how to free your mind to come up with literally dozens of questions “on the fly”, without the risk of getting stuck in a predictable pattern. We’ll also talk about the when and why of repetitive questioning, which like a curse word has its greatest power when used in the correct situation and less than every other word. Circling is a great way to get your feet wet in CI or turbocharge your existing practice as it fits into any situation, topic or technique, seamlessly providing the repetition brains crave to “get” the language and make it solid.

Classroom Management is the Cake, the Strategies are the Icing (2 hours)

Classroom Management is the Cake, the Strategies are the Icing (2 hours)

Tina Hargaden

No matter what strategies or “flavor” of CI you use, there are foundational skills that underlie all successful comprehension-based teaching. Learn foundational skills, strategies, and habits of mind and body to keep yourself comprehensible, to manage your classes. Successful students who feel engaged and comfortable, and who trust that they will comprehend the language used in class are easiest to manage. Learn how to train your mind, breath, and body to support you in making those moment-by-moment decisions that make or break your success in the CI classroom.

Comprehensible Culture! (1 hour)

Comprehensible Culture! (1 hour)

Annabelle Allen

Stop taking a day to teach Culture in English! As language teachers, we know the importance of exposing our students to not only language but culture too! Learn how you can explore and have meaningful conversations about culture with your students while staying IN the Target Language! MAKE it COMPELLING and COMPREHENSIBLE! Everyone wins!

Embedded Reading: Creating Readings (1 hour)

Embedded Reading: Creating Readings (1 hour)

Laurie Clarcq

How do I make my own Embedded Readings for MY kids?  Interested in creating your own readings?  Do you have class stories that you would like to develop?  How about an authentic resource that you would like to make more accessible for your students?This workshop will outline the process for you AND share some key tips to help you feel confident creating your own readings to use and share!

Embedded Reading: The Basics (1 hour)

Embedded Reading: The Basics (1 hour)

Laurie Clarcq

An introduction to the approach that scaffolds reading for success!  Learn how to recognize the power behind Embedded Reading, how they are created, and how they can be successfully implemented to boost reading skills and confidence!

Flow in the Elementary Classroom (2 hours)

Flow in the Elementary Classroom (2 hours)

Erica Peplinski

“Flow: the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity.” Learn how to keep your students in a state of flow in the elementary classroom from a teacher in her 13th year working with students from Pre-k to 8th grade. Class rules, procedures, point systems, classroom jobs, pacing an elementary lesson plan, brain breaks, and games will all be discussed. Participants will leave ready to keep their students in a state of flow, while staying in the target language. Could be done as a 1 or 2 hour session. As a 2 hour session I could teach some longer games, and also walk through flow for a basic ‘unit’ for an elementary classroom.

Head to Head: Applying Brain Science to the Language Classroom (1 hour)

Head to Head: Applying Brain Science to the Language Classroom (1 hour)

Erica Peplinski

Attendees will learn what happens in your brain when you acquire a second language, and how to use that knowledge to maximize learning potential in the classroom. The impact of brain-based learning will be experienced in the session, and teachers will leave with ways to apply their knowledge in their classrooms immediately.

Mafia and Loup Garou (1 hour)

Mafia and Loup Garou (1 hour)

Annabelle Allen

These two games are by far and beyond the MOST compelling and EXCITING strategies that I use in my classroom. Students ask to play on a daily basis, and the best part is, they are perfect vehicles for delivering high-quality comprehensible input, with 100% engagement and enthusiasm. Videos will be provided and a very detailed description of HOW TO PLAY, as well as HOW TO SET UP the game the first time with your students. NONE of the instructions need to be given in English. Instructions can be provided in novice levels with sheltered and comprehensible input. Your students will never want to leave your classroom! Come learn what everyone’s been raving about!

Making Comprehensible Videos For Your Students And The World (1 hour)

Making Comprehensible Videos For Your Students And The World (1 hour)

Pablo Román

An introduction to how to make your own high-quality CI videos with beautiful picture and great sound, and how to share those videos with your students so they can watch them repeatedly, or make them public for everyone to benefit. We will be using things that are already available to you like your smartphone, and only a minimum amount of cheap hardware, but still let you obtain a very good result. We will go through the whole workflow, from writing the video to publishing it. At the end of the talk I will also give tips for teachers who want to go a step further and do some more serious editing to their videos, like cutting out parts of the video, or adding images.

Maravilla Latinoamericana (1 hour)

Maravilla Latinoamericana (1 hour)

This is Mike’s professional response to counter ugly stereotypes about Latinos that have dominated the media. Inspire your students with real life stories of average people in Latin American doing extraordinary things to make our world a better place. Each biographical sketch contains an easy reading, a higher level reading, and a link to a short video. Mike demonstrates how to movie talk the non-fiction short videos to make them comprehensible. He also suggests several easy assessments to hold students accountable.

Milking a Movie Talk (1 hour)

Milking a Movie Talk (1 hour)

Annabelle Allen

Movie Talk is one of the most popular CI strategies out there. More often than not, after the video is used, the teacher and class move on. If it was compelling, there is no reason to stop with just the video. There is SO much that teachers can do to expand on the Movie Talk and continue to use the high-frequency structures that emerged during the video to continue exposing students to high-quality, compelling comprehensible input for acquisition! This presentation will introduce you to some of my favorite strategies!

Movie Talk (1 hour)

Movie Talk (1 hour)

Annabelle Allen

This presentation is for those of you who’ve heard of Movie Talk but haven’t taken the leap and tried it in your own classrooms yet. Learn where it comes from, and what it is all about! Come and see how easy and incredibly effective this Comprehensible Input strategy can be for your classroom and students. I will also speak about how Movie Talks can be the key to solving your multi-prep nightmare!

Open Sesame! Comprehensible Input and an Open Mindset (1 hour)

Open Sesame! Comprehensible Input and an Open Mindset (1 hour)

Laurie Clarcq

Worried that you, or your students, aren’t “creative” enough to really do this work well?  This workshop will outline for you several of the ways that CI actually grows creativity and develops an Open Mindset AND offers a number of CI opportunities in the classroom to do even more!!  You can do it!!

Optimizing Your Classroom Setup For MGMT (1 hour)

Optimizing Your Classroom Setup For MGMT (1 hour)

Lance Piantaggini

A good classroom setup not only helps make language accessible to everyone who enters the room, but also keeps students focused via MGMT-friendly routines. Participants will be shown how to create a safe, ideal environment for acquisition using the physical space, including alternative seating arrangements, use of wall space, and important posters beyond just question words.

Participation in a Proficiency-based World (1 hour)

Participation in a Proficiency-based World (1 hour)

Scott Benedict

Participation systems have come and gone and none fit in a proficiency-based grading system.

Or do they?

In this presentation, I will show you my system, how it works, and how I use it to motivate students and manage my TPRS/CI-based classroom without distorting students’ academic grades.

Performance vs Proficiency Assessments and Why You Should Care (1 hour)

Performance vs Proficiency Assessments and Why You Should Care (1 hour)

Scott Benedict

Find out the difference between performance and proficiency assessments and why performance assessments aren’t what they’re stacked up to be.

You will learn the difference between the two types of assessments referenced by ACTFL and why proficiency assessments are the ones that prepare your students for success in the real world.

Questioning Is Core (1 hour)

Questioning Is Core (1 hour)

Lance Piantaggini

Questioning is the core practice of interaction used in teaching methods and strategies used to provide comprehensible input (CI), including MovieTalk, Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling (TPRS), Personalized Questions & Answers (PQA), and Special Person/Discipulus Illustris. Participants will be shown techniques for honing their vertical and horizontal questioning skills.

Reading Outside the Roman Alphabet (1 hour)

Reading Outside the Roman Alphabet (1 hour)

Terry Waltz

Reading is an important way for students to acquire new language and solidify existing language, but how do you get students to read a totally new script without boring memorization? Comprehensible Input provides the foundation to make this happen quickly and easily! This session will introduce the cold character reading method of literacy originally developed for Chinese and usable for a variety of languages including Japanese and Russian. We’ll cover what kind of oral input is needed to support reading, how to assess reading readiness, the initial “cold” pass through a text, subsequent reading cycles and the link to writing.

Same Skills, Different Game (1 hour)

Same Skills, Different Game (1 hour)

Lance Piantaggini

Got the basics of Storyasking down? Apply your skills to other entertaining story activities that students crave! Participants will be presented with novel ways to co-create narratives, such as Story Clue, VERBA Stories, Story Card Magic, and Rory’s Stories.

Starting With CI: Making Your Classroom More Comprehensible (1 hour)

Starting With CI: Making Your Classroom More Comprehensible (1 hour)

Maureen Lamb

Many teachers would like to transition to using comprehensible input in their classrooms, but they are obligated to continue to use a textbook and/or some traditional methods because of the constraints of their school or department. This session will review how to gradually introduce CI into your classroom to make language learning more comprehensible over time. We will review how to implement daily classroom routines, how to create tiered readings based on textbook readings, and how to introduce grammar and vocabulary in the context of stories and readings. Over time, these activities will increase student learning and engagement in the target language. We will also examine additional strategies for connecting with other like-minded language teachers.

Successful Quick Writes - Less Stress, Less Grading, More Success! (1 hour)

Successful Quick Writes - Less Stress, Less Grading, More Success! (1 hour)

Scott Benedict

Do you stress over student writing?

Do you spend more time than you should on grading writing?

Do you want to know how you can have less stress, grade writing in less time, and make your students more successful?

In this presentation, you will learn how to administer quick writes successfully, grade them quickly, yet effectively with a simple rubric, and maximize your students’ success.

Take Your Grading to the Next Level - The Basics of Proficiency-based Grading (2 hours)

Take Your Grading to the Next Level - The Basics of Proficiency-based Grading (2 hours)

Scott Benedict

Do you ever look at your grade book and wonder why your students’ grades don’t match up with their ability?

In this presentation, you will learn the basics of proficiency-based grading so that you can set your students and their grades up for success!

Teacher Wellness- Burn Out is Bad for Everyone (1 hour)

Teacher Wellness- Burn Out is Bad for Everyone (1 hour)

Erica Peplinski

Teacher burn out is a real problem that hurts both staff and students. Due to increased pressure on teachers, it is easy to get stuck in a state of constant agitation and anxiety. When teachers are burned out we cannot do our best for ourselves or our students. Learn about the effects of burnout, and how to take back your health. Participants will learn what happens when your brain and body are burned out, simple breathing techniques to control stress, and yoga and healthy eating suggestions to return them to their best health. Doesn’t quite fit the topic suggestions, but still wanted to give it a shot. 🙂

This is (Us) Who We Are (1 hour)

This is (Us) Who We Are (1 hour)

Laurie Clarcq

From class starters to story-asking to homework…let your best self, and your students’ best selves show in all you do!  Simple, sincere and ways to “walk the walk”!   Take the expectations for your class to the next level by looking at every level of instruction and input and how it communicates the goals of the CI / TPRS classroom.

TPRS: Demo and Basic Principles (2 hours)

TPRS: Demo and Basic Principles (2 hours)

Terry Waltz

See a demonstration of oral input by TPRS in a language rarely taught, then listen to a debrief and reflect on the principles that make TPRS work.

Using Body Language to Connect with Students and Make C.I. Better (1 hour)

Using Body Language to Connect with Students and Make C.I. Better (1 hour)

Bryce Hedstrom

  • Learn to send more efficient nonverbal messages
  • Make communication clearer and classroom management easier
  • Discover how to use body language and facial expressions your advantage
  • Cut through contradictory messages and make you more efficient in the classroom

Language teachers rightly focus on verbal and written language, but synchronizing verbal messages with body language will launch your teaching to the next level. The last thing you need is to detract from what you are saying with inadvertent body language. Proper body language will help you to deliver compelling comprehensible input by making your verbal and nonverbal messages more consistent, inviting and encouraging. Learn how with these body language hacks for language teachers.

Trust, decision making, and feelings are handled in the limbic brain, below the level of consciousness. Unfocused body language messages can neutralize our spoken language. You can learn to send more efficient nonverbal messages with these body-language hacks that will make communication clearer and classroom management easier. In this active and fun-filled session, we will explore and practice ways that using facial expressions, eyebrows, hand placement, hand position, body angles, proximity, speed, mirroring, pacing and breathing, as well as the tone, rate, and volume of your voice influence students and make spoken language more powerful. The secrets of professional sales and presentations can be learned and adapted by language teachers to cut through contradictory messages and make you more efficient in the classroom.

Using Technology to Support Comprehensible Input (1 hour)

Using Technology to Support Comprehensible Input (1 hour)

Maris Hawkins

Technology can be used to aide in language learning, but many times, it seems the emphasis is on output instead of input. What are some technology tools that can be used to provide more CI to students? How can teachers use technology to provide instant feedback and reinforcement? Do teachers want to use technology, but are overwhelmed by trying to figure out how it works? In this session, teachers will look at platforms such as Actively Learn, EdPuzzle, Google Forms and Goosechase to see how they can provide more CI. In addition to evaluating these platforms, participants will also learn how to create on these technology apps to start utilizing them in class soon.

Worth 1000 Words - The Power of PictureTalk (2 hours)

Worth 1000 Words - The Power of PictureTalk (2 hours)

Amy Vander Deen

Current brain research shows that images are a powerful tool for learning and retrieving information, as well as engaging students who might not otherwise be reached. Discover how to maximize student engagement through PictureTalk. Learn where to find different types of images (memes, gifs, paintings, children’s book illustrations, photos of the target culture, and more) and how to use each of them effectively. By the end of this session, you will be able to adapt PictureTalk to five different types of lessons and activities.

Write & Publish a CI Novel (1 hour)

Write & Publish a CI Novel (1 hour)

Michael Peto

Use the creativity of your classes to help you develop an idea for a CI novel. Mike Peto walks you through a set of good CI classroom activities that will build your novel, one idea at a time. Learn how to simplify a text with your classes and how to develop complex story lines with simple language. Test drive multiple scenarios with your classes in order to create the most compelling, surprising plot twists. Mike walks you through the entire process, from generating the initial idea to selling and marketing your published novel.