Hola! I am a Spanish teacher working through year 20…and only now figuring out how helpful the blogging world can be so I’ve decided to create my own and offer my own 2 bits. I started out in Maryland as a French teacher, then taught both French and Spanish, and then after year 7, life took me all the way to Athens Greece to an International school, where I’ve spent the past 12 years teaching Spanish. It has been an adventure and quite a change moving from the public sector with a wealth of resources and PD opportunities to the private sector where we are expected to find these opportunities on our own. While I was still living in the US, AATSP and ACTFL were common department name dropping acronyms. In Europe- we don’t have these, so I’ve been hunting and on the lookout for worthy PD since.
After several years of going back and forth between should I or shouldn’t I, I decided in 2018 to finally take the plunge and started a very part time PhD program in communication, language and edu. My focus? Cultivating Curiosity. I was able to attend an ECIS conference in Copenhagen a few years back as this was the theme for the conference. I went, and while it was interesting, there was next to nothing for World Language teachers for how we can cultivate curiosity for our learners. Now I am a naturally curious being- always asking “why” or “how” questions, which can get annoying depending on who I am speaking to, but I have also noticed that students don’t do so much asking, as the teachers do so much of the talking. Our school encourages action research through a constructivist philosophy towards education- that is a “bottom up “/design thinking type of education and this fosters an inquiry mindset.
After Copenhagen, I decided to take matters into my own hands and started to research inquiry based learning for the world language classroom.
At the same time, while Greece has been infiltrated with thousands of refugees due to the Syrian crises over the past several years, and the political situation in the US has undergone a drastic change, I’ve noticed more and more how much there is a dire need for increased intercultural awareness and understanding, so people can communicate more effectively in this globalized world where the majority of language speakers are multilingual, yet the majority of policy makers are monolinguals.
So this is my focus for my research so far, and the reason I’ve begun a FB page for world language teachers (Cultivating Curiosity in the World Language Classroom) and finally this blog.
My hope is to build a resource center for teachers and start meaningful conversations. Educators,(any and all languages) curriculum developers, edu majors, policy makers, or even if you’re just a curious person/parent and love to see the love of curiosity in others as well (or else life can get lonely) this blog is for you. I love feedback, so go wild:)