Stage 1: Improving Foreign Language Course Outcomes

Plan Overview for Improving the Foreign Language Program at Prince of Peace

Grade reports and personal opinion polls during the years 2014-2016 suggest the Foreign Language program at Prince of Peace can be improved. The following information outlines the initial steps necessary to create the ideal language learning experience for students in grades 6-8. It is believed that the course will benefit by adding disruptive technology including flipped lessons and online teaching tools to the existing program (Track A), and adding an additional program for learning languages online (Track B). This overview pertains to Track A.

We expect this proposed change in the Foreign Language department will improve overall student learning and engagement and improve student attitudes and performance. The process includes four phases.

Phase 1: Evaluate Current Course. In this phase, a functional group of teachers and administrators will consider what factors can be changed to make the course better for the teacher and students. A great deal of analysis will be done. This phase will take one semester.

Phase 2: Implementation of New Strategies. After determining how the course will look following Phase 1, more research will be conducted by the technology department and language teachers to determine which technologies can be implemented in our school. A course of action will be created. Phase two should take 8 weeks.

Phase 3: Pilot New Program. During the last 8 weeks, the program will be implemented as a pilot with the resources available.

Phase 4: Feedback and Adjustment. During this final phase, the team will review the outcomes, comparing them against the same factors from Phase 1. Adjustments and final changes to the program will be drafted in preparation for the newly designed foreign language course to be used the following school year.

This course review will occur on the first Monday of the month during the planned staff meeting times. Team members are listed below. This overview serves as the first meeting agenda.

Planning Team: Susie Tucker, Jennifer Eicher, Judy Cornelius, Kelly Smith, Connie Angstadt

Stage 1: Evaluate Current Course

Quarter 1 Meeting Objectives:

  • Establish the need for change in the Foreign Language program
  • Assess general cause/effect of current outcome for further review
  • Identify best practices for learning through technology in Foreign Language courses
  • Reestablish program goals
  • Estimate time-line for course review and development of Stage 2 – Implementation

Course Review Process

  1. Identify the historical outcomes from the current course structure against the school mission and beliefs, and academic goals.
    • Past grade reports including objective assessments only
    • Exit interviews with students
    • Examination of current curriculum, standards, resources, and technology
  1. Examine the positive and negative effects (including the design of the program) from grades 4 -8, using discussion and brainstorming.
    • Environment
    • Grade reports
    • Student engagement and motivation
    • Resources
    • Technology
    • Curriculum
    • Learning objectives
    • Other factors
  1. Research review and case study analysis of best practices using technology in language classes
  2. Reestablish goals for program to include integrating technology into the existing program
  3. Develop Stage 2 – Overview: Implementation of New Strategies

4 thoughts on “Stage 1: Improving Foreign Language Course Outcomes

  1. Judy,

    I was wondering if this is what you plan to submit for our course work. I made my outline in a very similar format (still working on it), and was curious if “outline” meant just that or if more info was needed. I know it is our call, and I think what you have serves the purpose of outlining Phase 1. I think your introductory paragraph was helpful, and I plan to add something similar to mine.

    Chad

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      • PEER REVIEW 1

        Your introductory section is detailed and provides clear objectives. I wonder if there will be definitive phases or if it will be fluid and be a constant reevaluation process. I find it incredibly beneficial that you have involved other staff members at your school. I think this demonstrates your passion for invoking change. After all, you will not be teaching these classes, and I think that puts you in a unique role to do the necessary research from an unbiased point of view.

        Question: Does Phase 1 include searching for an actual program that can be utilized? Or, is that Phase 2 with looking for certain technologies? You will be implementing the Pilot in Phase 3. In previous pilots I have experienced, we tried out a few different programs simultaneously. Have you thought to pilot more than one program in different classrooms and monitor the differences?

        Chad Flexon

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      • Thank you for the review. No, the process is not fluid until phase 4. We have too few staff to keep a project like this on the docket for long. Phase 2 will include finding, and pricing options. No matter what we want, lack of funding will get in the way. Training the teachers will also be a hurdle as one is part time and generally unavailable. I will definitely use your suggestion to use more than one program during Phase 3. The last phase will be a fluid review. I have introduced MANY programs and they remain fluid until they are replaced with the next great teaching idea. Thanks for the review. Good ideas.

        Like

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