Reinforcing FSL Teachers’ Confidence and Sense of Self-Efficacy
Over the past few years, CASLT and other like-minded associations and stakeholders have conducted research and consultations to better understand Canada’s FSL teacher shortage. In spring 2021, CASLT and ACPI (Association canadienne des professionnels de l’immersion) undertook a study to measure the shortage of FSL teachers across Canada, which revealed a projected shortfall of up to 8000 Core French teachers.
CASLT’s recent pan-Canadian research project, Identifying Gaps and Challenges in FSL Teacher Education: Recommendation and Guidelines, also identified wide inconsistencies in the linguistic training and assessment and the second-language–specific pedagogy pre-service teachers receive in FSL teacher education programs. The findings also revealed that while many students feel well-equipped to teach French when they graduate, they soon discover that their training has significant gaps related to the realities of being a French language teacher. These realities include minimal support, a lack of community, and little to no opportunities for ongoing professional growth.
CASLT’s recent publication, Second Language Teacher Attrition, Retention, and Recruitment: A Literature Review on Issues, Challenges, and Strategies for French as a Second Language Teachers, also highlighted key factors that contribute to FSL teacher attrition, including the following:
- Pedagogical content knowledge (i.e., knowledge and skill in teaching a second/additional language)
- Target language proficiency (i.e., knowledge of and ability in the target language, as well as opportunities to practice)
- Isolation (i.e., lack of community and support from colleagues and administrators and a lack of opportunities to connect and collaborate with other FSL teachers)
The FSL Fundamentals project, funded by Canadian Heritage, aims to address these challenges head-on by:
- Creating a resource centre on the CASLT CoLab
- Guiding teachers to create and maintain communities of practice
- Providing courses for teachers on FSL pedagogy and French language proficiency
This project will help FSL teachers find support and a sense of community around FSL teaching. It will help them develop their pedagogical and linguistic knowledge, combat professional isolation, and strengthen their sense of identity and self-efficacy as language teachers.
Development of an FSL Teacher Support Section on the CASLT CoLab
This section of the platform will include:
- A series of mini modules on fundamental topics for FSL teachers, such as unit planning and assessment
- Strategies for teachers to improve their French-language proficiency
- L2 pedagogy resources
Instructor-Led Courses for FSL Teachers: FSL Pedagogy and Linguistic Proficiency
Each course will run for six weeks during the 2023–2024 school year and will include the following:
- FSL Teaching Approaches and Strategies
- Finding, Evaluating, and Creating Resources for FSL Programs
- French for Teachers (A1)
- French for Teachers (A2)
- French for Teachers (B1)
Following their delivery, the courses will be adapted for asynchronous learning in the CASLT CoLab.
Communities of Practice
CASLT will organize virtual community-building events through the CASLT CoLab. The events will provide FSL teachers with opportunities to connect and build communities of practice while learning about different aspects of Francophone cultures.
Instructor-Led Courses for FSL Teachers
Have any questions regarding this project?
Contact our Projects and Professional Learning Coordinator:
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