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Session Information

Sep12 - Oct19, 2023
7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. EDT


Course Details

Schedule and Format

12 lessons over 6 weeks that blend theory and practice:

  • Synchronous 60-minute classes Tuesdays and Thursdays, 7–8 p.m. EST (Zoom)
  • Tuesday evening classes are synchronous and all participants attend.
  • Thursday evening classes are offered synchronously or asynchronously. Participants may either attend the live class or work through the module on their own and post a reflection.
  • Participants are asked to apply what they are learning in their own classrooms and share their observations with course colleagues.
  • Optional activities: Reading/viewing activities complement the course discussions.

First class: September 12, 2023

Last class: October 19, 2023

Registration Fees

Registration Type Rate
CASLT Member $120 + tax
Non-member* $180 + tax

*Includes a one-year CASLT membership.

Course Completion

All participants who finish the course successfully will receive a certificate of completion.

Participant Profile

Teachers of Core, Extended, or French Immersion programs (elementary or secondary)

Language of the Course

This course is taught with a bilingual approach. Course content will be presented in English, with classroom examples in French. Participants may engage with coursework and discussions in English or French.

Instructional Approach

  • Action-oriented: Each module will include authentic examples from FSL classrooms, including videos of classrooms in action and examples of student work. Throughout the course, participants will contribute their analyses, questions, and reflections as we examine these examples together and identify the teachers’ and students’ strategies for improving communication in French.
  • Differentiated: Each participant is asked to set out personalized learning objectives, reflecting on their own professional learning goals for the course. The activities in the course are designed to be transferable to different teaching contexts. We will make explicit connections to how strategies can be adapted or selected based on student age, interest, and skill-level.

Course Description

In this course, we will explore different approaches and strategies for teaching French. Why do some strategies work better in certain contexts or for teaching certain skills? Join us in a safe, no-judgment professional learning environment where we will share examples of what works (and what doesn’t!). We will also discuss the research and experiences that inform our teaching practices.

The course is anchored in the pedagogy (Action-Oriented Approach) and language skill development (comprehension, production, interaction) of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) but the principles are also applicable to other frameworks.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this 6-week course, participants will be able to:

  • Distinguish between different pedagogical approaches to teaching French as a second/additional language
  • Identify and compare a variety of evidence-based strategies to help students develop their communicative skills in listening, speaking, reading, and writing
  • Apply those strategies to their own teaching context and receive feedback on their approach

Course Overview

Week Topic Learning Objectives
1 How Did You Learn French (Or Other Second Language)? Recognize the impact of personal learning experiences and preferences on our teaching choices/methods

Identify some historical and evidence-based approaches to second language teaching: grammar-translation, audio-visual, communicative, and action-oriented (socio-actional)

Discuss and compare classroom examples of these approaches

2 What Is Our Common Understanding of “Strategies”? Compare strategies, skills, and teaching habits

Connect the Action-Oriented Approach with three types of strategies: cognitive, metacognitive, and socio-emotional

3 Second Language Pedagogy: A Science or an Art? Identify strategies supported by evidence

Discuss the role of experience and intuition (in addition to evidence)

Reflect on the popularity of some approaches despite a lack of research evidence

4 What Teaching and Learning Strategies Are Particularly Useful to Support Listening and Reading (Comprehension)? Recognize the different purposes for listening or reading, and that teaching strategies should be based on purpose

Select a comprehension strategy presented in class to try in your classroom and create a single-point assessment rubric

5 How Do We Design Opportunities for Oral and Written Interaction? Identify supports for students before and during interaction activities to address their learning needs

Select a support strategy presented in class to try in your classroom and create a single-point assessment rubric

6 Planning: Collaborating and Reflecting

What Strategies Work for Me and My Students?

Co-create criteria for selecting/applying teaching strategies (How do we know if a strategy was effective? How will students know?)

Share and reflect on the results of a classroom experience based on the week 4 or 5 strategies

Practice giving feedback based on strategies that support communicative skills

Revise and submit your assessment rubric (comprehension or interaction) for instructor feedback




Presenter photo

Director of French-Language Priorities

Elizabeth Hoerath

Elizabeth Hoerath is a provincial leader in French as a Second Language (FSL) and French-language education. As a former FSL teacher and instructional program leader, she specializes in literacy and numeracy strategies to support all learners in Core French, Extended French, and French Immersion programs. As an Education Officer and then Manager of FSL Programs and Policies at the Ontario Ministry of Education, she was the lead writer of numerous professional learning resources. She has also worked with 60 English-language school boards to implement research-based improvement strategies and teacher professional learning such as “Including Students with Special Education Needs in FSL Programs,” Écouter pour apprendre, and Grammaire en action, as well as establishing the Ontario DELF Centre. From 2020 to 2022, Elizabeth worked with the Université de l’Ontario français as Director of Teacher Education Programs and volunteered as a Director and Treasurer for Canadian Parents for French Ontario. She is currently the Director of French-Language Priorities for the Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities. Her passion for educational excellence and the importance of connecting research, policy, and practice continue to inform her work.

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