3rd edition of Practical Advice for Teachers of Heritage Learners of Spanish: Essays by Classroom Teachers


Practical Advice for Teachers of Heritage Learners of Spanish: Essays by Classroom Teachers


The 3rd edition includes new essays by Kim Potowski, Alana Kubeczka, Claudia Decker, Michaela McCaughey, Angela George, Maya Jain, Veri Farina Becski, Nicole Puig-Herz and Janet Eckerson. New topics include using mentor texts, inclusive language, activities to build class communities, teaching grammar to heritage learners, ideas to incorporate humor into the daily classroom experience, exploring the relationship between students’ cultural identities and their language, and varied paths that teachers have taken to start and build their heritage learner classes.

Starting with a description of Stephen Krashen’s concept of “Language Shyness” and how it is reflected in our classes, we outline approaches that respect the unique needs of heritage learners. Topics include: the differences between heritage and native speakers of Spanish, a surprisingly illuminating essay about the differences between native-speaking and non-native speaking teachers, reflections on appropriate goals to structure a school year, home-school communication and issues particular to working with non-English speaking families, how to develop an independent reading program and how to structure a class with extremely heterogeneous reading levels, working within school cultures that may inadvertently undermine the needs of heritage learners, and a host a activities that work well in heritage learner classes. There are five essays outlining entirely different approaches to the school year: one that modifies a traditional thematic approach including descriptions for monthly units, a second approach based on pleasure reading designed to develop a love of reading even among low-level readers, a language arts approach designed to work in tandem with teachers in the ELA program, and two identity-based approaches explicitly designed to strengthen the connections between home, school and community. In addition, there are three essays detailing different approaches to leading mixed classes, with both heritage and non-heritage learners.

This edition also strengthens our approach to reading, offering big picture advice on developing a pleasure reading program as well as concrete, day to day activities that are easy to follow when you are just too tired to think about the big picture. We want you to not only be an effective teacher, but to thoroughly enjoy your HL classes and design an experience that your students find compelling, stimulating and yes… even enjoyable.

Click here to see the table of contents of the third edition, with new essays and essays with substantial changes highlighted in yellow.

This book is also available on Amazon. If you would like to support this project, please leave your honest review on the Amazon page.