A Propos - February 2020

French Newsletter
02-13-2020  A Propos - French Newsletter, Teacher Resources, Author Spotlights
Supporting your intermediate French learners, what makes language authentic, and free downloads for your classroom.  Subscribe to a Wayside newsletter

A propos

Bold ideas and practical resources for your French classroom

Hi educators

Welcome to the latest issue of A propos! In this issue: 

  • Find out how to scaffold the speaking skills of your intermediate learners
  • Take a look at what makes language authentic
  • Download free tools to support all learners in your classroom
Are you enjoying A propos? Tell us what you would like to read about!

Bon cours,

What do you give the students who want to say everything? 

"I know what to say, I just don't know how to say it" was the refrain French teacher Erin Gibbons heard from her intermediate students a lot. Her students were bursting with ideas but got frustrated when their language skills couldn't keep up. So Erin came up with some strategies to provide them with the same scaffolds she provides her younger learners.

3 basic principles about authentic language 

When Elizabeth Zwanziger arrived for her year of study abroad in France, she quickly realized that after more than 6 years of studying the language, she could not order food or understand her host family's everyday conversations.

Now a world language teacher education professor at the University of Iowa and the coauthor of EntreCultures, she looks back on her early experiences with learning French and outlines the 3 principles that guide authenticity in language teaching.

Proficiency-driven tools for your classroom 

Take a peek at some of the free proficiency-driven supporting materials we offer to make your life in the classroom easier. 

  • Classroom expressions handout in Spanish and French to help keep your students in the target language
  • Free lesson plans (in Spanish and French)
  • 5 reasons to teach for proficiency—a free download to make the case for proficiency-driven instruction.
  • Strategies for supporting heritage learners
  • Tips on integrating differentiated instruction
  • How to cultivate interculturality in your classroom

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Language Advocacy Day 2020

02-03-2020  All News, The Wayside Way, Interculturality
Join us for Language Advocacy Day and speak up for language education in your community Subscribe to a Wayside newsletter

The first steps to becoming a language advocate

Hi educators,

We are excited to once again sponsor Language Advocacy Day 2020. Organized by the Joint National Committee for Languages (JNCL), Language Advocacy Day (LAD) is part "lobby-day" and part full-day policy forum that brings together national representatives concerned about the state of language learning in the U.S.

Want to get involved? Watch this brief video with JNCL Managing Director Trey Calvin on how to take the first steps towards becoming a language advocate. Then download our handy guide to some of the easy things you can do right now to advocate for access to language education.

Can't make it to LAD this year? Follow us on Twitter February 6-7 to get an insider's look at the events of the day and to see how teachers across the country #speakupforlanguages.

Show your advocacy colors

Show your commitment to language advocacy by adding a Speak Up badge to your Facebook profile. Visit the Wayside page or search for Speak Up for Languages here.

'Inclusion is not just checking off boxes'

What makes a language program truly inclusive? How can we ensure that all students feel represented? How do we keep an open conversation with teachers to learn about the ever-shifting landscapes of their classroom? These are some of the questions we wrestle with in our latest Proficiency Talks blog post and we give you an insider's look at what goes into making sure that our world language programs represent and speak to all students in your classroom.

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Event: Wayside Publishing is hitting the road!


Come see us in the exhibit hall:

Be sure to visit our booth at one of these events to find out about our latest products, get free digital samples, or pick up a cute owl sticker or magnet! Stay tuned for our list of instructional strategy sessions and other events at several of these conferences. We can’t wait to meet you! 

Upcoming conferences:  

February 13-15 

NECTFL, New York City, NY 

February 20-22 

CCFLT, Loveland, CO 

March 5-6 

FLAME, Portland, ME 

March 6-7 

FLAG, Atlanta, GA 

March 12-14 

CSCTFL/MCTLC, Minneapolis, MN 

March 13 

VFLA, Montpelier, VT 

March 13 

COLT, Rotterdam, NY 

March 26-28 

SCOLT, Mobile, AL 

March 27-28 

FLENJ, Iselin, NJ 

April 2-5 


July 9-12 

AATSP, San Juan, Puerto Rico 

July 15-18 

AATF, Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada 

July 16-19 

APAC, Boston, MA 



Best Blogs of 2019

12-31-2019  All News, Featured Post, The Wayside Way, Teacher Resources, Authentic Resources
Start off 2020 with ideas on how to refresh and renew your teaching from some of our most popular bloggers.  Subscribe to the Wayside blog

The best tips & ideas for your classroom

Hi educators,

Revisit some of our most popular blog posts from this past year and get tips & ideas that will help you refresh and renew your teaching practice in 2020. 

4 steps for refreshing your teaching & starting strong in 2020
By Elena Spathis
Teaching often seems like running a marathon—we train and prepare, we push ourselves, and we keep going no matter what the circumstances. Reaching the end-of-year “finish line” to winter break gives us the opportunity to pause, reflect, and recharge.

The power of authentic resources
By Ed Weiss
When there is a real task involving real materials for a real purpose, students discover the purpose and need for learning a language and subsequently staying with that language throughout their secondary years. 

Helping students overcome their fear of mistakes
By Elena Spathis
In order to see our students really use the language successfully and authentically, we must encourage risk-taking in our world language classrooms. 

Activities that help create a safe classroom space
By Angelika Becker
Investing the time early in the school year fosters a sense of community that helps with partner and group activities throughout the school year.

How fewer, intentional goals will make you a happier, better language teacher
By Meredith White
Less guilt, less stress, less sense of imposter syndrome, less to keep track of —fewer goals that are more specific and intentional end up being less to keep track of and think about.

Happy New Year and Happy Teaching,

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Ya Sabes - December 2019

Spanish Newsletter
12-16-2019  Ya Sabes - Spanish Newsletter, Teacher Resources, Authentic Resources
Christmas activities for your Spanish classroom and hang with us in the Teachers' Lounge.  Subscribe to a Wayside newsletter

Ya sabes

Bold ideas and practical resources for your Spanish classroom


Hi educators,

Welcome to the latest issue of Ya sabes, your go-to source for everything you need to take your Spanish instruction to the next level. In this issue: 

  • Get ideas for new holiday activities from Diego Ojeda
  • Watch our Teachers' Lounge series
  • Download our presentation slides and handouts from ACTFL, along with our Classroom Expressions poster and free lesson plan

What would you like to read about? We'd love to hear from you!


Holiday activities with a twist

Diego Ojeda is back on the blog this month with a rich well of resources for the last few weeks of school before the holiday break. Browse his ideas for classroom activities that help your students expand their cultural knowledge and deepen their vocabulary. 


New YouTube series: Teachers' Lounge

In our new YouTube playlist Teachers' Lounge, we talk to classroom teachers, thought-leaders, and trailblazers in the world of language education to get quick insights and fresh ideas. 

In our first few episodes we talk to Wayside digital specialist Jen Cornell about how a global perspective is crucial to language learning, and to Spanish teacher Lynette Williams who discusses how proficiency-based authentic communication can take the pressure off students to speak with perfection.

Free proficiency resources

We are always expanding our free resources that make your life in the classroom easier. Browse what's available: 

  • Classroom expressions handout to help keep your students in the target language
  • Free lesson plan
  • ICYMI: Handouts and slides from our ACTFL presentations

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