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Service-learning: Teaching a foreign language from Kindergarten through College Frédérique Grim Colorado State University Frederique.Grim@colostate.edu CLAC 2008 What is service-learning?
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Colorado State University
(Goldberg, McCormick Richburg and Wood, 2006)
(Goldberg et al., 2006; McKenna & Rizzo, 1999)
→ Foreign Language National Standards (ACTFL)
(Gascoigne Lally, 2001)
a. On personal learning motivation?
b. On community children?
c. On professional aspirations?
(with at least one semester of French)
from Fort Collins, CO public and private schools
Subsequent semesters → service-learning
TOTAL = 104
“Yes, it has. Intuition-based questions – the kind most asked by children – provided me the opportunity to thoughtfully reexamine and introspect on my own language apprehension and retention patterns.” A.
“Yes, I’ve done a lot of review of vocabulary that I don’t use very often. Also having to explain things to the kids helped solidify my understanding.” J.
“I have loved teaching the preschoolers. It’s the highlight of my week, so it has motivated me to continue with French and Education.” R.
“ Yes. There’s a certain amount of motivation that comes with young children, who start learning French with nothing and succeed, that prompts me to drive myself to learn more” A.
“Yes, it was a really fun way to use the language. It actually felt like French was useful to me.” J.
“ This experience has definitely been a great motivation for furthering my learning of the French language and culture.” M.
“Not only did the experience demonstrate the difference between the cultures, but it also showed them similarities and the connections they could make to the French language, country, and culture.” M.
“Maybe not significant, because they only used French for a few minutes once a week. But I think it encouraged some of them to study French more, maybe in Middle School.” T.
“Yes, by the end, the kids were able to have short conversations with each other in French.” J.
“Absolutely. Children who spoke not a word of it on day can now converse in simple terms and an appreciation for this language’s origin comes with it.” A.
“ No. I only taught 10 half hour sessions. I think it takes much more exposure to a foreign language for a significant impact to take place.” G.
“I’m not necessarily more motivated to study French but I am motivated to pursue a career choice away from teaching” G.
“I am more interested in this age group and the Waldorf philosophy.” R.
“It did help, but it made me realize I’d like to teach older kids.” T.
“This opportunity has provided a lot of great experience regarding education and has made me consider teaching French as an option. I really liked the creative aspect.” M.