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World Languages

Understanding NYS World Language Themes and Topics

The Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages of the New York State Education Department presents "Understanding NYS World Language Themes and Topics".

Original webinar date: Tuesday, September 28, 2021, 4:00—5:00 p.m.

Webinar description: Explore ways to develop rich and culturally-contextualized unit themes that are built from NYS WL themes and topics. Learn how to integrate multiple topics and authentic resources to promote interdisciplinary thinking, provide communicative contexts and highlight cultural perspectives. Presenters will discuss alignment of key language functions and text types to target proficiency checkpoints while sharing approaches and processes they prefer in preparing to craft thematic units.

Webinar Facilitation Guide (WordPDF):  This facilitation guide is designed for use by a facilitator and/or participants engaged in professional learning designed around this webinar and its focus topic(s). Facilitators and/or participants may use the facilitation guide in whole or in part, all at once or spaced out over time. They may additionally customize the facilitation guide to best suit their needs by modifying, adding to, or eliminating suggested discussion questions and/or tasks.  The facilitation guide begins with an overview of the webinar goals and its organization. It follows with suggestions of structured discussion questions and tasks that are organized for use before, during, and after webinar viewing and aligned to the stated webinar goals.

Link to webinar flyer

Webinar Co-presenters: Bill Heller, Dr. Lori Langer de Ramirez & Dr. Joanne O'Toole

  • Bill Heller has taught in public elementary, secondary, community college and undergraduate classrooms for 40 years, including 24 years teaching Spanish at Perry High School. He has been a methods and Spanish instructor at SUNY Geneseo since 2001.  He is a frequent presenter of workshops, webinars and keynotes. Bill served as Conference Chair for the 2018 Northeast Conference (NECTFL) and is currently a member of the Executive Board and Content Advisory Panel for World Languages at the New York State Education Department (NYSED).
  • Dr. Lori Langer de Ramirez began her language teaching career as a teacher of Spanish, French and ESL. She holds a Master's Degree in Applied Linguistics and a Doctorate in Curriculum and Teaching from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is currently the Director of World and Classical Languages & Global Language Initiatives at the Dalton School in New York City. Lori is the author of books, texts and articles about language teaching and learning and multicultural education. She presents workshops at local, regional and national conferences and works with teachers in schools throughout the U.S. and around the world. Her website (www.miscositas.com) offers free materials for teaching Chinese, English, French, and Spanish.
  • Dr. Joanne O'Toole is a Professor of Modern Language Education in the Curriculum and Instruction Department at SUNY Oswego. She is a member of the Executive Committee of the NYSED World Languages Content Advisory Panel and the Principal Investigator of the NYS World Language Standards Initiative. Joanne has served in several world language leadership positions including NYSAFLT President and NECTFL Director, and is a regular presenter at national, regional, state, and local conferences. Joanne is a certified teacher of Spanish and taught Spanish for 16 years prior to entering post-secondary education.

Link to Handouts folder from webinar

Link to recording of webinar

Link to post-assessments

To receive a certificate of completion (including a CTLE certificate), NYS educators must view the recording of the webinar (see link above) in its entirety and then answer at least seven out of ten questions correctly on the post assessment.  If the minimum required score (7 out of 10) is achieved, the educator will receive a certificate via email within an hour.  For the convenience of our World Language educators, there are multiple versions of the post assessment available, should the required score not be achieved on the first attempt.  Educators may take each version of the post assessment once.

Important notes:

  1. Educators may take each version of the post assessment once.  Credit will not be given for taking a single version of the post assessment more than once. 
  2. Credit will not be given for more than one passing score on any of the post assessments for a webinar (listed below) in a single academic year.  
  3. Educators may receive credit for viewing the webinar recording and passing a post assessment once in each academic year and are encouraged to take a different version of the post assessment on a yearly basis to review and test their knowledge of the webinar's content. 
  4. It is the responsibility of the individual educator to keep track of the information on the professional learning they complete each year, including the number of CTLE hours.
  5. Questions about this webinar or the post assessments, should be directed to Candace Black at (585) 356-0951 or at candace.black@nysed.gov.

Webinar Summary

# of attendees: 171

# of CTLE certificates issued:  137

# of certificates of attendance issued:  34

# of organizations represented by attendees:

  • 95 districts
  • 144 schools
  • 3 partner organizations
  • 3 colleges & universities

# of languages taught by attendees:  American Sign Language (ASL), French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Mandarin, and Spanish

(last updated 9/5/2022)