French as a Second Language
I wrote the French as a second language curriculum to meet three objectives:
1. Equip learners with critical thinking, problem-solving, and divergent thinking skills.
2. Empower learners with the resilience and self-confidence to brave new terrain, take risks, and toy with abstract ideas.
3. Learn content knowledge that make us purposeful actors in our rapidly changing communities.
How do we do it?
Four units make up the skeleton of our explorations: our natural environment, personal responsibility, our role in the community, and human-tech relationships. For beginner learners, for example, this means discovering seasonal changes, daily routines, family & traditions, and inventions we rely on. With advanced learners, we use the same framework to explore ideas like climate change, activism, and social effects of digital technology. Our subjects of study evolve along with us.
Constructivism and social constructivism are central pedagogies to our learning. We scaffold and make connections in the zone of proximal development to grow in strides. We collaborate as pairs, or in small groups, to model and make, and create a culture of knowledge.
We spend very little time memorizing, and instead invest in analysis, application, and creation of ideas. Before reading, we analyze the text for patterns of gender agreements, or changes in verb conjugations. In conversing, we piece together sentence starters with thematic vocabulary to engineer new topics of open discussion. In writing, we synthesize our grammar observations and text-based phrases for strong self-expression.
In all of our learning, we are process oriented, celebrate effort, and reflect upon our habits and potential. Where we don’t know, we cultivate curiosity, and where we’re passionate, we seek a deeper understanding.