Lectures by BLC Fellows (Gabel, Kendall, Perco), December 2, 2016

Fall 2016 BLC Fellows Instructional Development Research Projects

FrancoForniens: Bringing Oral History into the French-language Classroom
Aubrey Gabel, GSR, French
In this presentation, I will show how I borrowed techniques from oral history to build an archive of interviews with “FrancoForniens,” or French speakers living in the Bay Area. Oral history has long been employed in K-12 classrooms to “personalize” the experience of history for students; it asks them to consider how history has impacted the everyday lives and memories of real people. For my project, I interviewed a diverse population of local French speakers, asking them to reflect upon their experiences of mobility and cultural exchange. By focusing on others’ experiences of “culture” and indeed, “culture shock,” I built materials that encourage students to critically engage with the experience of cross-cultural exchange. This engagement will not only prepare students for their future experiences of living and working abroad, but expose them to the diversity of cultural perspectives already at play in their local communities.
Download handout as PDF


Teaching Verbs of Motion through Film in the Intermediate Russian Classroom
Matthew Kendall, GSR, Slavic Languages & Literatures
For the intermediate student of Russian, there is no topic more daunting than motion verbs. Verbs that denote motion further complicate the language’s aspect system that is already difficult to master, and for non-native speakers, these verbs express surprisingly precise forms of motion. This project aims to improve upon static, pictorial models of motion that textbooks offer to students, and offers lesson plans that use silent film clips in the classroom to better accustom students to the difficult task of narrating how one moves in Russian. The teaching materials I produce encourage the instruction of conceptual thinking first (what Dan Slobin has called “thinking for speaking”), which encourages students to master these verbs’ form after they have become more acquainted with the kinetic contexts that require them.


Blended Learning, Anyone? A Path to Designing a Hybrid Language Course
Giuliana Perco, Lecturer, Italian Studies
Blended learning and hybrid teaching are popular buzzwords in higher education. They promise students greater flexibility and departments opportunities to increase enrollments. But how difficult is it to create a feasible hybrid language course? What does it entail? This presentation will discuss the goals and challenges of transforming a five-day per week Elementary Italian 1 course into a hybrid language learning experience.


Friday, December 2, 2016
3 – 5 pm
B-4 Dwinelle Hall