San Jose CA workshop (July 15-16)


In July I will lead a two day workshop in San Jose, CA. With two days of instruction we will have significant time for demonstrations and for participants to practice a variety of essential comprehensible input strategies. Participants also get a full year subscription to the workshop online and a copy of the book that accompanies the workshop, “My Perfect Year“. Scroll down for a full description of the workshop.

Early registration price is valid until June 10th. Register with 3 or more colleagues and I will refund another $25 per person. The refund will be issued directly via PayPal. Does your school district need a purchase order? Contact me at

This workshop will take place at the Comfort Inn in Sunnyvale, which is reasonably close to the airport and offers free parking. Address: 940 W Weddell Dr, Sunnyvale, CA 94089 Phone: (408) 734-3742

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On the first day we start with several easy to implement CI techniques. Participants see how easy it is to provide clear, interesting input for their students through student interviews, calendar talk and student surveys. We finish the morning with a demonstration of a One Word Image (OWI), an essential technique to unleash students’ creativity in their second language. Participants create their own OWI in small groups. In the afternoon we focus on Movie Talk skills. Mike demonstrates how to take a 45 second video clip and transform it into a full, 55 minute lesson plan… all without planning! Movie Talk is easy for beginners (both students and new CI teachers!); Mike demonstrates how to tweak Movie Talks to get the most language acquisition out of the experience. Participants get access to literally hundreds of videos suitable for movie talk. To round out the afternoon Mike outlines key steps to using an ongoing television show as an anchor text for your classes so that you will always have something to discuss. Classroom management is an important part of the CI classroom; observations are embedded in activities throughout the day and we end our first day of the workshop with a summary of management techniques and simple, powerful assessments that will take very little time to grade.

On the second day of the workshop we delve into using our OWIs to create easy stories with our students. The entire morning is dedicated to developing your skills so that you lead your students to create compelling stories. We discuss how to transform ho-hum stories into gripping narratives. Participants also learn how to scaffold the process to inspire students to develop stories around AP and IB themes. Teachers who must teach to a common department assessment will learn how to combine these powerful student-centered storytelling techniques with the specific vocabulary that your colleagues expect you to cover. During the afternoon of the second day we turn our attention towards developing our classroom libraries. For teachers of lesser-taught languages developing a reliable system to produce class-created texts is essential, but those texts are also useful for any teacher of beginners. I demonstrate many browsing activities, which are activities that get your students familiar with your class library and help them quickly locate the “home run” novel that will turn them on to a lifetime of reading… in their second language! We learn how to manage a pleasure reading program, including how you display your library might help or hurt your reading program. By the end of the second day of the workshop I present my “maravillas”, an activity that melds movie talk with embedded readings to present authentic cultural resources. I will show you the steps to make your own “maravillas” and give Spanish teachers access to 25 ready to go maravillas that I made for my own classes.

But our workshop does not end on the second day. I have collected resources, filmed myself at workshops demonstrating key techniques and arranged it all in a logical sequence to make learning each skill easy for the teacher new to this approach.

Teachers practice the techniques in the workshop before returning to the classroom

All together there are 16 modules with more than 25 videos (over 266 minutes of footage and more being added). I call this “Mike’s Online Master Class”; all workshop participants get a one year subscription to the online workshop and a copy of the book that accompanies the workshop, “My Perfect Year”. You will find materials that you can use immediately in your classes while you learn the skills at your own pace. Best of all, unlike a live workshop, you will be able to return and watch the demonstration again until you can do it confidently in your own classroom. Still not clear? Send me an email with a request and I will address your question in the next video that I add to the course. I am committed to providing the very best online PD experience so I will continue adding to the workshop as I give live workshops across the country.

Included in this workshop is a one year subscription to my workshop online: