FLES Spanish teachers from Oak Park Elementary School District 97 were recently recognized at the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Annual Convention and World Languages Expo, held Nov. 17-19 in Nashville, Tenn.
Participating in the convention this year were Elementary World Language FLES Spanish teachers Lidys Aguirre, Anna Nieto, Rocio Jacoby, Karla Muñoz, Maria Elvira Colmenero and Dawn Fogle Deaton, as well as retired Lincoln immersion teacher Kathleen Priceman, currently president-elect of the National Network for Early Language Learning (NNELL).
At its yearly ACTFL business meeting, the Learning Languages for Children Special Interest Group (LLC SIG) recognized Irving teacher (and team leader) Silvia Zaragoza and the FLES team for its grant award to develop and pilot a curricular unit and mural project based on the life and work of Diego Rivera. Following a book project, Zaragoza and her students, together with the art teacher Ms. Tague, will construct the mural in the first floor hallway.
The ACTFL international event brings together more than 7,000 language educators from a multitude of languages, levels and assignments. More than 800 presentations and interactive sessions offered teachers extensive professional development opportunities and the chance to engage with their colleagues from around the globe. The opening general session featured CNN's Bill Weir, who spoke about and showed examples of the importance of language learning, international understanding and cultural competence.
District 97 teachers participated in several sessions, including literacy tools and activities, storytelling, assessment, classroom management, stations and maker-spaces in world language learning, technology, and intercultural classrooms.