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STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
FLOYD T. CHRISTIAN Superintendent
BULLETIN 70 1966
37 3 6
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STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
FLOYD T. CHRISTIAN, Superintendent
T ODAY'S WORLD DEMANDS a high degree of communica-
tion among its citizens, and our nation must take giant strides
in learning about other peoples, in order to maintain and
strengthen our position of leadership.
A basic tool in this learning process is knowledge of languages,
a fact which became apparent in the United States during World
War II. Since those years, Americans, in increasing numbers,
have found a daily need for the ability to communicate in a
language other than their own.
Florida teachers, alert to this need, have succeeded in estab-
lishing enlarged and improved offerings in foreign language
teaching, at both elementary and secondary levels of instruction.
They have taken advantage of training offered in summer insti-
tutes and through in-service training programs and, as noted by
the increasing number of language trained high school graduates,
have succeeded in raising the quality of foreign language instruc-
This guide offers some practical suggestions that should be
helpful to teachers, supervisors and principals. It offers back-
ground information and it looks into possible future plans and
conditions, as they relate to foreign language teaching in the
It is hoped that this guide will provide fresh material and new
ideas for Florida teachers, as they continue to strive for even
Higher standards of excellence in the education of our nation's
FLOYD T. CHRISTIAN
Superintendent of Public Instruction
THE PLANNING, WRITING AND PRODUCTION of any
curriculum guide is an undertaking which requires the de-
voted thinking and the long time concern and attention of many
who are interested in the education of Florida's children.
The creation of a guide in a subject area such as Foreign Lan-
guages also requires constant checking and revisions in planning
and writing, to keep pace with changing trends in instruction
and in materials.
Florida has been fortunate in having a committee, appointed
for this task, whose members have been equal to the need and
who have contributed generously of their time and their knowl-
edge to produce this new guide.
Members of the committee are: Mrs. Elizabeth F. Boone,
Supervisor of Foreign Languages, Dade County Public Schools;
Mrs. Dorothy Clemmons, Washington County High School, Chip-
ley; Miss Lucille Cotten, Supervisor of Instructional Materials,
Escambia County Public Schools; Dr. Herman G. James, Jr.,
Department of Modern Languages, Florida State University; Mrs.
Mary E. Lombardy, Fort Walton Elementary School, Fort Walton
Beach; Mrs. Virginia Peters, Hollywood; Mr. Edgar E. Sutley,
Mount Dora High School, Mount Dora; Dr. Irving R. Wershow,
College of Arts and Sciences, University of Florida; Mrs. Adair B.
Wiess, DeFuniak Springs.
Appreciation is also extended to those foreign language teach-
ers in Florida schools who reacted to the drafts of this guide and
made valuable suggestions for revision.
Working closely with the committee throughout the produc-
tion of this guide have been Mr. O. E. Perez, Consultant, Foreign
Languages, State Department of Education, and Mrs. Ruth Chap-
man, Editorial Assistant in the Division of Instructional Services.
Special recognition for professional support and leadership is
given to Dr. Joseph W. Crenshaw, Director, Division of Instruc-
We are further indebted to Mr. J. K. Chapman, Mr. R. W. Sin-
clair, and Mr. Ray O'Keefe for suggestions and assistance in illus-
trating, printing and distribution of the guide.
Table of Contents
Foreword ............. .......... ........ ........... i
Acknowledgments ..................................... iii
INTRODUCTION ................ ................ 1
SEQUENTIAL PROGRAM ........................ 10
ADMINISTRATOR'S RESPONSIBILITIES ......... 16
TEACHER PREPARATION ....................... 19
EFFECTIVE TEACHING TECHNIQUES ............ 35
CONTENT ........................................ 54
INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS ................... 66
A ddenda ........................................... 73
T WO NOTEWORTHY CHANGES in foreign language in-
struction in the public schools have taken place in the last
decade. More emphasis is being placed on the study of all modern
foreign languages and the primary goals of instruction are the
ability to understand the spoken foreign language and the ability
to speak that language with reasonably correct fluency.
Public awareness of the necessity for verbal communication
was stimulated during World War II by the success of such pro-
grams as the Army Foreign Language School of Monterey, Cali-
fornia and the Foreign Service Institute in Washington, D. C.
Following the organization of modern foreign language teach-
ers in 1952, a six year study was made by MLA, supported by the
Rockefeller Foundation. This was followed by passage of the
National Defense Education Act in 1958 and this provided for the
training of new teachers and additional training for those already
teaching. Through NDEA summer institutes, teachers learned
new approaches, gained greater confidence and utilized many new
Provisions of NDEA ensure that the positive effects on educa-
tion will surpass immediate defense objectives and permanently
strengthen and enrich our educational and cultural heritage. (See
Bibliography for historical details.)
Title I Sets forth congressional findings and policy declara-
Title II Provides for loans to students excelling in foreign
language institutions of higher learning.
Title III Provides financial assistance for strengthening
science, mathematics and modern language instruc-
Title IV Provides for national defense graduate fellowships.
Title V Provides for programs in guidance, counseling, and
Title VI Provides advanced training in modern foreign lan-
guage and in related fields for individuals available
for service; provides for research and studies in
developing special materials used in teaching these
languages and in discovering more effective methods
of teaching such languages. This program has sup-
ported the many summer foreign language institutes.
Title VII Provides for research and experimentation in more
effective utilization of television, radio, motion pic-
tures, and related media for educational purposes.
Title VIII Provides for area vocational education programs.
Science tells us that every living thing communicates. Man has
many ways to communicate, the most common undoubtedly be-
ing speech. It is within this area that modern foreign language
instruction is most concerned. Research tells us that every human
being has mastered the basic structure of his native language by
the time he is five years old. What he continues to do the rest of
his life is elaborate on and embellish this structure. Language
learning goes on as long as the person lives. Obviously, formal
education can only attempt to observe the system under which
an individual effortlessly and normally learns his first speech and
then provide a similar situation for the learning of a second
language. The student needs an opportunity to hear and then
speak the foreign language as much as possible. The skills to be
emphasized follow in this order: LISTENING, UNDERSTAND-
ING, SPEAKING, READING, WRITING. Our objectives are
1. To understand the language as it is spoken by native speak-
ers both publicly and privately
2. To speak the language with facility, fluency, and accuracy
3. To read with direct comprehension and without reference
to conscious translation
4. To write the language correctly
5. To appreciate the culture of the people who hear, speak,
read, and write the language in their native country.'
Secondary modern foreign language teachers, aware of the
increasing public demand for foreign language mastery, realizing
the existing classroom situations, and accepting the challenge to
reach the above instructional goals, should plan their courses so
that language study, both in and out of class, should approximate
Level I Listening 50% Level II Listening 40%
Speaking 30% Speaking 30%
Reading 15% Reading 20%
Writing 5% Writing 10 %
Level III Listening 30% Level IV Listening 20%
Speaking 40% Speaking 30%
Reading 20% Reading 30%
Writing 10% Writing 20%
1. No student will be refused the first year of a foreign lan-
guage because of any grade in any other subject.
2. Nothing less than a four-year sequence in the same language
3. After a long-range study in one foreign language is securely
in process a second foreign language can be studied. A long
sequence in one language is preferable to two short se-
4. It is not expected that any attempt at complete grammatical
presentation will be given in less than a four-year sequence.
5. English usage in the foreign language classroom should be
limited by the teacher to semantic clarification. (Brooks,
1Spanish for Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing: Grades 7-12. Bulletin of the
California State Department of Education. Vol. XXX, No. 4, Sacramento, California,
6. The audio-lingual approach to foreign language learning im-
plies and demands that an initial period of time during the
first year be devoted exclusively to listening-speaking prac-
tice. No textbooks should be used until the basic sounds of
the foreign language have been mastered by the majority
of the class, until the students have disciplined themselves to
learn by critical listening, and until the students can per-
form well within the framework of what has been taught
in the foreign language.
7. The fact that a student has been passed from one level to
another does not necessarily mean that he has mastered
the entire body of material for that level; therefore, it is
essential that the teacher establish the level of competency
of each student in the class before moving forward.
8. If a sufficient number of FLES-trained students do reach
Grade 7, competencies equal to Level I instruction, then they
should for the best interest of the child be placed in a class
separate from those students who have had no such ele-
mentary training and should be taught materials appropriate
to their level of ability.
9. Consistency and frequency of study are keys to a successful
program. Therefore, in those schools where a foreign lan-
guage is begun in Grade 7, daily class sessions of at least
20 minutes throughout the year are preferable to any other
In ideal elementary school programs, a second language should
be a common experience for all children. Anyone with normal
physical and mental faculties can learn another language. If this
language program is to be profitable for each child, it will neces-
sarily be taught by a teacher trained in language and language
teaching and be a part of a sequential program moving from
any given grade through the secondary school. It is suggested by
the MLA that at the end of Grade 6 of such a program, informed
guidance should be provided by the foreign language teacher in
selecting the pupils for whom further study will be profitable.
In secondary school programs in which the students have not
had elementary training, the only prerequisites should be average
ability and the will to learn. It is true that at the secondary level
there has been a tendency to consider language as a subject to be
offered only to the college preparatory group; however, the
NASSP recommended in 1959 that all pupils in the secondary
schools should have the opportunity to elect foreign language
study and to continue it as long as their interests and abilities
Interest in the study of a foreign language has been stimulated
by the present status of world affairs. Thus, since foreign
languages are already in the limelight of American education, it
is the task of foreign language educators to define objectives and
to provide the kind of language teaching which is best suited for
carrying out these objectives.
Proficiency in communication in a foreign language is an asset
and should be considered for its value to the individual as well
as to the nation. The knowledge of a foreign language is not
primarily a defense measure; it is a means of communication, an
open door to literature and a key to understanding of other cul-
When a student chooses to study a foreign language, he hopes
to acquire skills in conversing with native speakers, to be able
to read newspapers and stories, and to be able to write personal
letters. His skill in foreign language will also afford him pleasure
in traveling abroad and will be of practical use in business and
vocational pursuits. A recently published study by the U.S.
Department of Health, Education, and Welfare describes many
foreign language job opportunities. Generalizations as to which
language will be of most value are to be avoided simply because
world events have opened new horizons for any student any-
Exploratory or Short Term Programs
Short term programs (6-9-12-18 weeks) in which a few
phrases, songs, games, and dialogs are taught do not constitute
2A Handbook for Guiding Students in Modern Foreign Languages. U.S. Department
of Health, Education and Welfare, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.,
adequate foreign language programs. It takes a skillful and well-
trained teacher to present only a few weeks of language study so
that the student will maintain his original interest or develop an
interest and skill in foreign language. In the light of the scarcity
of such well-trained personnel, this teacher should be using his
skill in teaching a regular language course.
Exploratory courses on the junior high level have seldom
proved to be of value. Especially since we now wish to provide a
continuous sequence of study in the same foreign language for
those students who have had elementary language training, it
would be preferable to discontinue these exploratory courses in
favor of serious language study. In those systems where FLES
is not offered, it is even more vital that the junior high school
offer sequential, year-long programs. Such a program is neces-
sary to provide students with an effective introduction to the
language and culture of another ethnic group as well as to moti-
vate them to give fair consideration to foreign language in
planning their future studies.
Foreign language instruction in the elementary grades and in
junior high has increased in demand, with the changing attitudes
toward the role of language in the total school programs, and this
has brought a change in sequential patterns.
This change has necessitated the creation of materials empha-
sizing the multiple skills for younger students and of new mate-
rials for advanced classes in grades ten through twelve.
Perhaps even more important, in the total foreign language
curriculum picture, is the need for updating and vitalizing the
teacher training program in colleges and universities. Also
needed is a re-evaluation of testing in the light of new objectives
in foreign language teaching. At present, the MLA Cooperative
Foreign Language Tests are the best available.
Levels (for explanation of levels, see Chapter on Content)
Any discussion as to level content perforce will be a rewording
of Nelson Brooks' superior presentation in his Language and
Language Learning. Therefore, any committee planning the de-
velopment of a detailed course should refer to that nationally
It must be clearly understood that LEVEL does not necessarily
mean material learned for one school year. Nor does it neces-
sarily mean that any one level as outlined in a text can be accom-
plished in a school year. For that reason, many students are in
their second year of study but using materials marked Level I.
Grouping (according to ability to learn) and fluid schedules will
alleviate some of the misunderstanding brought about by situ-
ations such as those described above.
Level I 1. Beginning phonology
2. Basic syntax patterns of the spoken language
3. Use of morphology
4. A modest vocabulary
At the conclusion of this level the student can
read and write the same material he has
mastered audio-lingually. A professionally pre-
pared test on competencies will be given at
the close of the course, and those students who
do NOT measure up to average, who lack
initiative and drive, may be advised to dis-
continue the foreign language study.
Level II 1. There will be continued emphasis on and re-
inforcement of structural patterns already
known along with the introduction of new
patterns. There will be no attempt for com-
2. There will be determined encouragement of
original extemporaneous speaking within the
bounds of the material learned.
3. Reading will be correlated with skills already
mastered and will be in subject areas of interest
to teenagers. Included will be works referring to
the contemporary scene in the foreign country.
4. Writing is still of the least importance and will
be based entirely on what is spoken and read.
COMPLETION OF THE BASIC COURSE
Level III 1. Emphasis will remain on understanding, speak-
2. Individual speaking will be longer and more fre-
3. Individual speaking will be emphasized.
4. Work will continue on pattern variations and
syntactical patterns not yet studied.
5. Reading will be for outside class activities fol-
lowed by class discussion and drill of structures
found in the reading. Some of the reading will be
passages of literary prose suitable to the stu-
6. Writing must be according to specific directions
and under close supervision of the teacher.
Level IV 1. Emphasis will still be on understanding, speak-
2. Free speech will continue to receive emphasis.
3. The presentation of the structure of the language
will be completed.
4. Readings will be of literary value, suitable to the
5. Writing will continue to be under close super-
vision of the teacher.
COMPLETION OF THE REGULAR COURSE
Level V This is a goal toward which the foreign language
program can strive. The quality of work could well
be similar to that now done in college courses.
COMPLETION OF THE ADVANCED COURSE
(Detailed description of levels will be found in
Chapter on Content.)
Each level will be progressively richer in content
and more challenging in the development of each
skill of the foreign language. Great care must be
exercised by the school to make each level mean-
ingful, worthwhile, and coordinate with institutions
of higher learning. There is no question but what
the latter will have to increase their offerings in
depth and width to satisfy these students. Levels
V and VI can be the Advanced Placement Program.
1. The objective of present day modern foreign language teach-
ing is the achievement of functional mastery of the language
by the student. Language programs must, therefore, stress
long continuous integrated sequences in each foreign lan-
2. In view of this goal the most acceptable approach to lan-
guage teaching is the audio-lingual. (See definition in glos-
3. To achieve this goal the following language skills must be
mastered in the order presented: the ability to listen and
understand, the ability to speak, the ability to read and the
ability to write.
4. Since language skills do not exist in isolation, all skills must
be mastered and coordinated into a unified whole-the for-
eign language. The beginning student listens and imitates,
associates meaning to sounds. He speaks. After he achieves
these skills, the ability to read and write may be introduced.
5. Students who choose to study a second foreign language
should be encouraged to complete levels I and II in the first
language before beginning the second.
1. Assignment of foreign language students is the joint respon-
sibility of the Language Department in cooperation with the
2. Assignments should be made on the basis of interest of
student, classroom space available and other student per-
sonal information. Single item evaluations, including pro-
ficiency in the English language, are unreliable.
The FLES sequence has as its primary function the develop-
ment of positive attitudes toward foreign languages and the peo-
ple who speak them, through a program in which all children
can participate. The aims of the elementary program are: (1) de-
velopment of good listening habits and the reproduction of
sounds in connected, meaningful speech, at the age when the
student is best able to imitate and mimic them; (2) early begin-
nings of a sequential program; (3) continuity of program into
the seventh grade.
A. Primary sequence (before grade 4)
1. Suggested periods
a. 5 to 10 minutes daily and whenever suitable for rein-
b. Additional time may be allowed, where possible.
2. Suggested subject matter*
a. Phrases of greeting and courtesy
b. Names and titles
c. Family relationships
d. Action games and songs
e. Classroom situations
f. Numbers, colors, songs, and simple stories
B. Intermediate sequence (after grade 4)
1. Periods should be 10 to 15 minutes daily and whenever
suitable for reinforcement. Additional time may be allot-
ted, where possible.
2. If there has been no previous sequence, start with primary
sequence subject matter.
3. Implementation of subject matter:
a. Longer drills on structure and pronunciation drills.
b. Situational dialogs which can be actively performed.
See Bibliography for sequential PLES programs.
c. Questions and answers based on dialogs.
d. Use of dialogs in narrative situations.
e. Reading and writing of materials completely mastered
(For explanation of level, see Chapter on Content) Each level
in the secondary sequence is that body of subject matter which
has been determined by county curriculum personnel as the
minimum which can be accomplished in a daily schedule of at
least 45 minute periods.
The success of any sequential program depends on co-
ordination of materials and personnel. This is the basic duty
of the coordinator or supervisor. It is suggested that each
county appoint a foreign language teacher as coordinator
of the elementary sequence.
A. Duties of elementary coordinator
1. Plan the FLES-TV program in cooperation with tech-
nical personnel, studio teacher and classroom teacher.
2. Implement the TV program to coincide with class-
3. Plan and prepare a long, sequential program to coin-
cide with adopted secondary program of county.
4. Coordinate ETV and all audio-visual aids for the pro-
5. Supervise and evaluate program.
6. Organize a teacher training program.
7. Keep informed on foreign language instruction re-
B. Implementation of program
The elementary program may be successfully taught by
the elementary grade teacher with basic language train-
ing or by a visiting language specialist or by a combina-
tion of both. Where the elementary teacher is the lan-
guage teacher, electromechanical aids are of extreme im-
portance. Television and recordings must necessarily
correlate with classroom instruction. (See section on
Television.) The instruction becomes a teacher-pupil
In the larger counties it is suggested that a separate co-
ordinator be appointed for the secondary language pro-
gram. In the smaller counties, one coordinator may be in
charge of both elementary and secondary sequences.
A. Duties of coordinator
1. Supervise all language instruction
2. Coordinate purchase and distribution of all instruc-
3. Organize an effective teacher-training program
4. Evaluate results of program.
SUGGESTED SEQUENCES OF STUDY
y 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14
or Level I II III IV V College Level
Basic Level I II III IV V College Level
Basic Level I II III IV V VI
Level I II III IV V VI
I II III IV V
I II III IV
I II III
In school systems which offer a sequential FLES-secondary
program, there should be two stream or track offerings beginning
in the seventh grade: One for the students who had a FLES
experience and another for those who did not.
Programs A and B, A and C, B and C, or B and D, etc. might
well be the two tracks or programs. The amount of time available
through scheduling would, of course, determine the quantity of
material taught and the degree to which it would be learned.
Programs B and C could be a short period daily, beginning a
sequential program. The student then could proceed with a full
academic program in grade 9. Programs D through H will obvi-
ously be more demanding of the student and requiring more
acquisition of skills and knowledge in less school allotted time,
that is, fewer school years.
The school's program should provide for more out-of-class drill
sessions and laboratory periods or recognize that generally the
student who begins language study late cannot be expected to
perform with the same degree of proficiency as the student who
has had a long sequential exposure to language. A program of at
least four full years is recommended. If the student is fortunate
enough to get more, he will certainly be more ably instructed.
If he gets less, he will obviously get only a percentage of a total
The school system that can offer only three years' worth of
good instruction does more for its students than the system
which boasts of a longer range, but upon close inspection will be
found to have a poor time sequence and/or inadequately pre-
Size of Language Classes
It is recommended that the audio-lingual multiple skills ap-
proach be used in teaching languages. Experience has proved
that such an approach, to be most effective, should be taught in
small groups of from 10 to 15 students. Such grouping allows for
individual attention. It is realized that this may not always be
possible. However, no language class should have more than
twenty-five (25) students. A class of twenty-five may be divided
into several small groups, within the classroom, for essential oral
practice and individual aid.
Schools should have language laboratories so that valuable
class, group or individual work may be carried on in the labora-
tory, fortifying the classroom instruction.
A third and fourth year study of a language should be encour-
aged. This may mean beginning with a small number in order to
build up the class gradually. In some cases the third and fourth
year may be taught in the same class until the number of each
is increased. Or, a second and third year combination may be
taught in the same class. The office record of a student studying
in a combination class should indicate his study in such a class.
This will enable the college he attends to determine his place-
IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY of those in positions of leader-
ship in the secondary schools to recommend adaptations of
the curriculum which seem necessary in the light of current in-
ternational developments and the cosmopolitan character of
present-day living. These adaptations will encompass a variety
of subjects, one of the most crucial of which is modern foreign
language instruction. It behooves the alert administrator to be
aware of the new developments in this area of learning and to
take constructive action in view of these changes.
The following is a statement of objectives taken from the
NASSP Bulletin of September 1959:1
The kind of modern language study advocated in our recommenda-
tions differs in objectives and methods from that which has been tra-
ditional in many schools. It aims to give the student direct experience
with language as a means of communication. Its outcomes are the
ability to understand the standard spoken language on subjects within
the student's experience, to speak within these same limits, to read
without translation and to write what can be spoken. In method, it
uses the aural-oral approach with training of the ear as the first
step and with grammar learned through mastery of speech patterns.
Recommendations for implementing these "new key" objec-
tives include the expansion of all two year programs in foreign
languages to three or four year sequences. It is considered better
to concentrate on a longer sequence in one language than to have
a shorter sequence in two languages. Administrators should en-
courage students who are proficient in one language to elect the
study of a second in conjunction with the first whenever possible.
In addition, the principal or supervisor should adjust the school
schedule to include additional modern foreign language offerings
as the need and opportunity arises.
Constant vigilance of the modern language classroom, the in-
clusion of an electronics laboratory, the insistence on properly
1 NASSP Bulletin, September 1959, p. 4.
trained teachers, the creation and supervision of suitable in-
service work, will reward the administrator with a language
program designed to meet the changing needs of Twentieth
Century living. (See Chapter III, part II, p. 1, "Responsibility
for Planning an In-service Program.")
The effective foreign language teacher must combine several
skills: those of the teacher, native informant, and language
analyst. Yet, all too often, the teacher has had no formal instruc-
tion in the science of language beyond his own elementary lan-
guage courses. Professional responsibility obliges us to attempt
to remedy this situation by investigating the insights of linguis-
tics into the science of language and the behavior of language
Fortunately, for the future of language teaching, the interested
and dedicated language teacher has many opportunities to ac-
quire an adequate knowledge for the teaching of foreign lan-
guage, through NDEA institutes, in-service summer courses and
Suggested Guidelines for Visitation of Classes
1. During oral drill NOTHING should be on student desks.
2. All students participate orally and appear to be listening and try-
ing. Participation should vary from class to group to individual,
3. The teacher gives directions in the language.
4. The teacher moves around the room, NOT neglecting any section.
5. The tape recorder/lab is used systematically for twenty minutes
6. If headsets are available, the students use them with a minimum
of confusion and an average of intelligence.
a. Responses are made in a low voice.
b. Students sit precisely at their positions.
c. Teacher plans so that he/she gives some attention to these
7. If a student operates the equipment, he should be involved in
class procedure and not be asked to miss every class.
8. The tempo of class activity is steady and obviously well-planned.
This condition can be obtained by use of cue cards.
9. A good class is serious, happy, NOT boring and NOT a big game.
10. Songs and games are introduced OCCASIONALLY. When taught,
the procedure should be audio-lingual.
11. After the first six weeks in Level I, reading and writing should be
12. Class starts promptly.
13. No lists for memorization are given.
14. Responses are NOT just one word.
15. In Levels II, III, IV the target language should be in oral use. Si-
lent study and reading are reserved for out-of-class activity.
16. Some techniques should be employed whereby it is obvious that
the students understand what is being taught.
1. Plans on cue cards should be very specific. If the school requires
that plans also be in a book, they will of necessity be more gen-
2. The substitute plans should be general-a simple review.
3. Extra curricular activities are important and have a place, but
such activities can become so demanding that classroom teaching
will suffer. Any activity that demands excessive time of teacher
and students ceases to be of value.
A Word Relative to Latin Classes
The preceding observations are primarily for modern languages; but
every single item, even those regarding tapes, laboratory, and drill can
be involved to some extent in a Latin class. Some of the techniques em-
ployed to insure better learning can certainly be employed.
1. Latin need not be "dead" in presentation.
2. Question-Answer, narration, and oral drill can bring a class to
3. Grammatical form can well be taught by repetitious drill.
T RADITIONALLY, requirements for certification of teachers
have been expressed in minimum semester hours of college
credits. In this regard, Florida's existing regulations appear to
conform closely with median tendencies of the nation as a whole.
Florida's certification requirements in foreign languages may be
summarized as twenty-four credit hours in the subject area for a
first language (or eighteen for a second) and twenty-four credit
hours in professional education as inclusions in a bachelor's de-
Several states have set their standards for certification based
on results of the Skills Section of the MLA Language Ability
Tests. Requirements for foreign language teaching in the elemen-
tary schools are particularly in need of clarification, especially
where no language requirements exist for the degree of Bachelor
of Science in Elementary Education, which is the source for the
preparation of elementary teachers. It is of extreme importance
that secondary teachers of foreign languages be certified by Lan-
guage Ability and those in elementary on the basis of a minimum
of 12 semester hours of language communication, grammar and
knowledge of the particular language interest and culture.
Standards For Teacher-Education Programs**
Prepared by a conference convened by the Modern Language Associa-
tion in December 1963, this statement is addressed to state depart-
ments responsible for the certification of teachers and to institutions
that prepare elementary and secondary-school teachers of modern for-
eign languages. Its purposes are to identify and clarify acceptable stand-
ards of preparation.
1. Only selected students should be admitted to a teacher-prepara-
tion program, and those selected should have qualities of intellect,
character, and personality that will make them effective teachers.
2. The training of the future teacher* must make him a well-edu-
** Reprinted from Publications of the Modern Language Association of America. Sep-
tember, Part II, 1964.
These specifications apply to the specialist in modern foreign languages at all
levels. In the elementary schools there is a clear need for specialists as well as for
the classroom teachers who do the follow-up work on the specialist teacher's lesson.
cated person with a sound knowledge of United States culture,
the foreign culture and literature, and the differences between the
two cultures. It must also enable him to:
a. Understand the foreign language spoken at normal tempo.
b. Speak the language intelligibly and with an adequate command
of vocabulary and syntax.
c. Read the language with immediate comprehension and without
d. Write the language with clarity and reasonable correctness.
e. Understand the nature of language and of language learning.
f. Understand the learner and the psychology of learning.
g. Understand the evolving objectives of education in the United
States, and the place of foreign-language learning in this con-
3. In addition to possessing the requisite knowledge and skills, the
language teacher must be able to:
a. Develop in his students a progressive control of the four skills
(listening, speaking, reading, writing).
b. Present the language as an essential element of the foreign
culture and show how this culture differs from that of the
c. Present the foreign literature effectively as a vehicle for great
d. Make judicious selection and use of methods, techniques, aids,
and equipment for language teaching.
e. Correlate his teaching with that of other subjects.
f. Evaluate the progress and diagnose the deficiencies of student
4. An approvable program to prepare such a teacher must include:
a. Intelligent evaluation and utilization of his pre-college lan-
guage training through course placement according to results
of proficiency tests.
b. An offering of language and literature courses advanced enough
to enable him to teach the gifted student.
c. Courses and directed reading that give him a first-hand ac-
quaintance with major works of literature, to be tested by a
d. Use of the foreign language as the language of instruction in
all language and literature courses.
e. Extensive and regular exposure to several varieties of native
speech through teachers, lecturers, discs, tapes.
f. Instruction in the foreign geography, history, and contempo-
g. Instruction in stylistics, phonetics, and linguistics.
h. Instruction in the psychology of language learning and the phi-
losophy of education.
i. Instruction and practice in the use of the language laboratory.
and audio-visual aids.
j. Systematic observation of the foreign language being expertly
taught, followed by the experience of teaching under expert
k. Evaluation of the teacher candidate through 1) proficiency and
other appropriate tests, 2) appraisal of his teaching skill by
5. An approvable program should also make provision for:
a. Native speakers as teachers or aides.
b. Study abroad for at least one summer.
c. Organized extra-curricular foreign-language activities.
d. Training in evaluating and diagnosing pupil progress.
6. The institution must be able to demonstrate that its modern-
foreign-language staff is of sufficient size and competence to give
the desired instruction. There should be at least two well-qualified
teachers of each language and at least one teacher of each lan-
guage should hold the Ph.D.
7. A candidate's readiness to teach (as attested by his foreign-
language department, the education department, the academic
dean, and the principal of the school in which he does his appren-
tice teaching) must be certified not only by the departments di-
rectly concerned but in the name of the whole institution.
8. Teacher-preparing institutions should regularly evaluate the ef-
fectiveness of their programs by arranging for visits to their grad-
uates on the job and by inviting evaluations from administrators
of the schools in which their graduates teach. It is the responsi-
bility of institutions that prepare teachers of foreign languages-
together with the state departments of education that certify
them-to scrutinize constantly the effect of their programs upon
foreign-language learning in the schools that employ their gradu-
Teacher qualifications as recommended by the Modern Lan-
guage Association are explained as follows:
1. Listening Comprehension
Superior: Ability to follow closely and with ease all types
of standard speech, such as rapid or group conversation and
mechanically transmitted speech.
Good: Ability to understand conversation of normal
tempo, lectures, and news broadcasts.
Minimal: Ability to get the sense of what an educated
native says when he is making a special effort to be under-
stood and when he is speaking on a general and familiar
Superior: Ability to speak fluently, approximating native
speech in vocabulary, intonation, and pronunciation. Ability
to exchange ideas and to be at ease in social situations.
Good: Ability to talk with a native without making glar-
ing mistakes, and with a command of vocabulary and syntax
sufficient to express one's thoughts in conversation at
normal speech with reasonably good pronunciation.
Minimal: Ability to read aloud and to talk on prepared
topics (e.g., for classroom situations) without obvious fal-
tering, and to use the common expressions needed for
getting around in the foreign country, speaking with a
pronunciation understandable to a native.
Superior: Ability to read almost as easily as in English,
material of considerable difficulty.
Good: Ability to read with immediate comprehension
prose and verse of average difficulty and mature
Minimal: Ability to grasp directly (i.e., without trans-
lating) the meaning of simple, non-technical prose, except
for an occasional word.
Superior: Ability to write on a variety of subjects with
idiomatic naturalness, ease of expression, and some feeling
for the style of the language.
Good: Ability to write a simple "free composition" such
as a letter, with clarity and correctness in vocabulary, idiom
Minimal: Ability to write correctly sentences or para-
graphs such as would be developed orally for classroom
situations and to write a simple description or message
without glaring errors.
5. Applied Linguistics
Superior: The "good" level of competency with additional
knowledge of descriptive, comparative, and historical lin-
Good: The "minimal" level of competency with addi-
tional knowledge of the development and present charac-
teristics of the language.
Minimal: Ability to apply to language teaching an under-
standing of the differences in the sound system, forms, and
structures of the foreign language and English.
Superior: An enlightened understanding of the foreign
people and their culture, such as is achieved through per-
sonal contact, through travel and residence abroad, through
study of systematic descriptions of the foreign culture, and
through study of literature and the arts.
Good: The "minimal" level of competency with first-hand
knowledge of some literary masterpieces and acquaintance
with the geography, history, art, social customs, and con-
temporary civilization of the foreign people.
Minimal: An awareness of language as an essential ele-
ment of culture and an understanding of the principal ways
in which the foreign culture differs from our own.
7. Professional Preparation
Superior: A mastery of recognized teaching methods,
evidence of breadth and depth of professional outlook, and
the ability to experiment with and evaluate new methods
Good: "Minimal" level of competency plus knowledge of
the use of specialized techniques, such as audio-visual aids,
and of the relation of language teaching to other areas of
the curriculum. Ability to evaluate the professional litera-
ture of foreign language teaching.
Minimal: Knowledge of the present-day objectives of the
teaching of foreign languages as communication and an un-
derstanding of the methods and techniques for attaining
Under the National Defense Education Act of 1958, Title VI,
Language Development Program, the MLA Foreign Language
Proficiency Tests were developed to measure the skills set forth
in the Statement of Qualifications. These tests were prepared as
a cooperative project of the MLA, the Education Testing Service
and the U. S. Office of Education.
In each of five modern languages-French, German, Italian,
Russian, and Spanish-tests of listening, speaking, reading, and
writing abilities have been developed, as well as tests of knowl-
edge of applied linguistics and of the civilization and culture of
the people whose language is being studied. A professional prep-
aration test has also been prepared. This test, common to all
language fields, is designed to ascertain what the foreign lan-
guage teacher knows about the teaching process. Two forms of
each of the above tests have been constructed. An effort has been
made to assure that the alternate forms of a particular test are
comparable in difficulty and in content coverage.
Emphasis on testing for language ability does not minimize
the fundamental academic and proper teaching of grammar.
Previous experience shows the inadequacy of simply accumu-
lating number-courses in foreign language preparation.
This evidently has not equipped our modern teachers, and in
many instances, there has not been leadership in teacher training
institutions toward stressing language speaking ability.
This one basic aspect brings us to the present realization and
agreement among experts' that saying things comes before seeing
and that the ability to read and the kinetic capability of writing
complement the respective sequence in the learning process of
the learning cycle.
The teacher trained to teach in our modern language world
must realize that listening, understanding, reading, and finally
writing are by their very nature similar to the same experiences
in the mother tongue: that one will understand and say much
more than one will ever read or write. This aspect of relative
and successive acquisition of basic skills is known to us as "The
Audio-Lingual/Multiple Skills" process.
1 Nelson Brooks. "The Change from Traditional to Modern in Language Teaching,"
pp. 46-52, Curricular Change in the Foreign Language. College Entrance Examination
Board, Princeton, New Jersey, Box 592. 1963.
In comparison with previous ways of teaching, we now rely
more on analogy than on analysis.
The learner becomes familiar with structure-simple, everyday
useful patterns in an organized plan. These expressions, when
they are mastered, are extracted and used, in appropriate situa-
tions, in order that, through usage, the meaning can expand. As
the interaction takes place, the student will be able to perceive
how the new language works.
Experiences gained through changes in patterns and dialogs
should be enriched with the language's intonation, phonetics,
mimicry, and culture of the people whose language is being
As adequate teacher-preparation takes place and proper guid-
ance is exerted through the department in charge, certification
will be based on language ability rather than on accumulation of
class hours. The MLA should be commended for leadership in
clarifying the desirable qualifications of, and means of preparing,
teachers of modern foreign languages.
Application of the principles specified below is central to effec-
tive preparation of future teachers in all subject-matter fields.
Methods of certifying teachers should hereafter guarantee ade-
quate preparation by including evidence of proficiency based on
performance as well as upon credit hours. Certification of candi-
dates by the State should therefore be based on the following
1. All institutions professing to prepare teachers of modern
foreign languages for elementary and secondary schools
should set up specific programs designed to give future
teachers the desired qualifications in their teaching field as
defined by the MLA in cooperation with other national or
regional organizations of foreign language teachers.
2. Modern foreign language teachers in the elementary and
secondary schools and in the colleges, together with the state
department of education, should cooperate in setting up
criteria for approving teacher education programs.
3. Certification of a modern foreign language teacher by the
state authority should be based upon satisfactory comple-
tion of such a program, together with specific recommenda-
tion of the candidate by the institution of higher learning.
4. This institution should be responsible for evaluating all the
qualifications and the proficiency of the candidate, including
liberal education, professional preparation, and total readi-
ness to teach. Qualification acquired by private study or
other personal experience should be accepted by the insti-
tution when substantiated by proper evaluation.
5. Standardized tests of proficiency should be developed as
soon as possible to assist the institution and the employer in
diagnosing a candidate's qualifications as a language
Teacher preparation curriculum must make available to all
prospective teachers the acceptable suggested subject matter re-
quirements by levels rather than by grades. (See Chapter on
This type of preparation involves objectives which are con-
sidered to be germane to this concept of teaching and rejects
those that, perhaps for reasons of expediency, are commonly
Taking into consideration the trend in the teaching of modern
foreign languages as stated in the preceding paragraphs, a more
direct approach in teacher preparation is needed.
All the instructors at all levels shall be experts in all aspects
of the language being taught. By expert, it is meant that at all
times proper and acceptable language usage is at the level and
command of a native or near native speaker.
If, as a profession, the foreign language field is to endure, there
must be no excuse for not demanding expert teachers trained by
the best prepared university faculty in order that from the very
first internship experience, the teacher shall be able to do an
effective job of instruction in functional language usage. Besides
developing these abilities, teachers must also be trained ade-
2 College Entrance Examination Board. Curricular Change in the Foreign Languages,
1963 COLLOQUIUM ON CURRICULAR CHANGE. The Board, Box 592, Princeton, New
Jersey, 1963. p. 73.
quately in the use of modern electronic, visual, audio, and
In-service education is often thought of as something that in-
volves college credit toward an advanced degree. In many in-
stances this is true. However, there are many other ways in
which a teacher can achieve the standards required of the pro-
fession, or, if he feels fully qualified for present needs, continue
his professional growth. Emphasis will be given in this part of
the chapter to an exploration of many varied educational activi-
ties that promote the professional competencies of language
Planning an In-Service Program
Any plan for strengthening the competencies of language
teachers must be shared by teachers, administrators, institutions
of higher learning, and state departments of education. Although
the language teachers may take the initiative in planning and
selecting the experiences through which they will improve their
professional qualifications, the administrators have the responsi-
bility for creating an environment which fosters their profes-
sional growth. They can help by (1) assuming leadership in
planning a long-range program which will stimulate teachers to
seek opportunities for further growth, (2) providing time for
workshops, conferences, and committee work, (3) helping
teachers obtain information relative to NDEA institutes and
offerings of universities and colleges, (4) securing qualified con-
sultants, (5) obtaining materials and equipment, (6) encourag-
ing teachers to participate in the activities of professional organi-
zations, and (7) exploring available community resources, such
as, community colleges and offerings of Florida's Office for Con-
As teachers plan for their professional growth, the statement of
competencies for language teachers, which is presented in Part I
of this chapter, may be helpful. This statement describes the
qualifications of language teachers on three levels of achievement
in the seven major areas of preparation. Although this statement
was designed for the guidance of students during the period of
preparation for teaching, it may well serve as a measure whereby
teachers can assess their strengths and weaknesses and plan a
program on the basis of deficiencies discovered. Since teachers
tend to rate themselves lower than they really are, the use of
test scores on the MLA Foreign Language Proficiency Tests are
more realistic in diagnosing deficiencies.
In the following chart the seven areas of preparation are listed
under competencies. To the right of each competency a number
of activities are listed that can contribute to the development of
competence in that area. Obviously, any given activity may con-
tribute to a number of competencies. However, in the interest
of conserving space each activity was listed only once.
Listening to records, tapes, radio, and televi-
sion broadcasts in the language
Traveling and studying in the country of the
Conversing with exchange teachers and/or stu-
dents from the country of the language
Seeking out and practicing conversation with
people in the community who speak the lan-
Listening to a recording of a native or near-
native speaker and practicing speech
Reading books, newspapers, and magazines in
the language. Repeating written material in
conjunction with tapes
Using programmed learning materials for self-
Corresponding with people living in the coun-
try of the language
Preparing magazine articles, book reviews,
newspaper notices, and radio broadcasts in the
Attending summer programs at institutions of
higher learning in this country or in the coun-
try of the language
Culture Becoming informed of the history, geography,
art, and general culture of the country of the
Reading regularly current events in the coun-
try of the language
Viewing motion pictures in the language
Studying the literature and the arts of the
country of the language
Achieving an understanding of the foreign peo-
ple and their culture through personal contact,
such as traveling and living abroad, and/or by
joining bilingual organizations or groups in this
Professional Joining and participating in the activities of
professional organizations. (A list of organiza-
tions which was prepared by the Foreign Lan-
guage Department of NEA is presented at the
end of the chapter.)
Reading current books and journals dealing
with the teaching of modern foreign languages
Participating in workshops and NDEA Insti-
tutes designed to strengthen competencies in
teaching techniques and in language skills
Sharing experiences of teachers who have at-
tended conferences, language institutes, or who
have traveled recently in the country of the
language by planning departmental meetings,
area or county-wide meetings, radio and televi-
Participating in study groups organized for the
purpose of developing skill in teaching tech-
niques, such as preparation and use of tapes,
use of language laboratory facilities, and the
preparation and use of pattern drills
Using the services of a qualified consultant who
visits the school system periodically for the
purpose of appraising the program and recom-
mending ways for continued improvement
Participating in the selection of state-adopted
textbooks by evaluating books submitted for
Utilizing the skills of native speakers who live
in the area in the preparation of tapes
Working with a consultant in planning, select-
ing, and using a language laboratory
Working with local, state, or national commit-
tees in the production of curriculum guides
Observing the techniques and procedures used
by skilled teachers.
Using the qualifications statement a teacher can determine the
areas of preparation in which he needs improvement. He can then
select the activities that are suitable for him. Many of the
activities listed above have nothing to do with college credit
work toward an advanced degree. Consequently, a teacher can,
on his own initiative, and at the local level, pursue activities
that will contribute to his professional growth.
Non-credit courses such as those offered by Adult Education
Departments have proven valuable to some school systems,
particularly in relation to the in-service education of teachers
who participate in FLES programs. School systems that plan to
initiate FLES programs will find that a good in-service program
must precede and accompany the elementary program. For
example, a school system that plans to initiate a program at the
third grade level, extend it upward one grade per year until it
includes grades, three, four, five, and six will find it helpful to
begin the in-service program for third grade teachers prior to
beginning the program with third grade children. Each year
thereafter, the teachers of each grade will have an opportunity
to enroll in a non-credit course before their pupils are involved
in the program.
In large school systems, adult classes can be organized espe-
cially for teachers. Since credit is not involved, the content of the
course can be adapted to the needs of a particular group. The
content of the FLES program is usually included as a part of
the course. However, the purpose of the course is not to keep
the teachers "one lesson ahead of the pupils" but to increase
their knowledge of the language and to improve their compe-
tency as FLES teachers.
It should be pointed out that the amount of training provided
by adult classes does not necessarily qualify a person to teach a
language. However, it does enable teachers to guide children in-
telligently as they listen to the radio or television teacher or as
they supplement the work of the special language teacher. It
also enables them to "set the stage" for the lesson and to plan
Workshops in which a group of teachers work with a consul-
tant on the solution of problems, offer many possibilities to both
elementary and secondary teachers. Length of workshops and
procedures used vary in terms of the purposes for which they
are organized. The two types of workshops described below
have proven helpful in large counties. It is most important that
continuing in-service training be made available by the local
1. By means of a three-weeks workshop in which the consul-
tant was experienced in the development of FLES programs,
one school system made general plans for the revision of the
elementary program. Specific plans for the third grade pro-
gram were completed. These plans were used for a year on
an experimental basis, with teachers who participated in
the workshop, before they were used with all third grade
2. Four or five workshop sessions, scheduled throughout the
year, enabled one supervisor to include all the teachers in
the system in a workshop program during the year. During
the meetings, emphasis was placed on the demonstration of
teaching procedures, such as: the use of dialogs and pattern
drills; the discussion of problems; the sharing of materials;
and practice in using electro-mechanical aids. The schedul-
ing of the meetings throughout the year gave the teachers
an opportunity to consider many problems that could not
have been anticipated in a pre-school meeting.
Conferences provide an opportunity for classroom teachers,
principals, and supervisors to plan together. Agreements can be
reached regarding long-range plans and steps that should be
taken in order to achieve them. Conferences also provide a time
for teachers to share new materials or ideas, to listen to speakers
or to view films that depict good programs or teaching proce-
Attendance of teachers at Florida Modern Language Confer-
ence or the Classical Association of Florida Conference stimulates
interest and enthusiasm. By sending one or more representatives
to this conference, and to other regional conferences, the teachers
within a school system can keep informed on research findings,
new materials, and new developments in all phases of the lan-
guage program. Regional conferences, such as The Northeast
Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages and the Lan-
guage Laboratory Conference, publish annual Reports of the
Working Committees. The reports of the Northeast Conference
may be obtained from the American Classical League, Miami
University, Oxford, Ohio; those of the Language Laboratory Con-
ference may be ordered from Director of Publications of the
Research Center, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.
Copies of these reports are valuable additions to the professional
Institutes have been developed for teachers of modern foreign
languages in elementary and secondary schools through the Na-
tional Defense Education Act of 1958. Information concerning the
institutes is ready by December prior to the summer or academic
year in which the institute is scheduled. Teachers who wish this
information should request a list of participating institutions
from the Language Development Section, U. S. Office of Educa-
tion, Washington, D. C. They should then address all correspond-
ence or applications to the director of the respective institutes.
Although deadlines may vary according to schools, March 1 has
generally been given as the last day for filing applications. Ac-
cepted participants are usually so informed by the middle of
The language institutes focus on the improvement of teaching
modern foreign languages in elementary and secondary schools.
These institutes strengthen the teacher's knowledge of the lan-
guage. By constant use of the language and study of correlated
subject matter the teachers become more proficient. Equally im-
portant, these institutes upgrade the professionalism of language
Professional Organizations and Publications
1. Modern Language Section of the Florida Education Association
2. Classical Association of Florida of the Florida Education Associa-
tion. Both are organizations of state teachers. They hold a fall
meeting and a spring meeting in conjunction with the FEA. The
Modern Language Section sponsors the Foreign Language Newsletter
3. Department of Foreign Languages (DFL)
The prerequisite is to be a member of NEA.
a. To promote an effective program of modern and classical
foreign language education in the schools and colleges of the
b. To act as a clearing house for information on foreign language
activities. DFL Bulletin
c. To cooperate with all associations of foreign language teachers.
d. To supplement existing services available to foreign language
e. To represent the profession of foreign language education in
all ramifications of NEA activities.
Send $5.00 dues to:
Department of Foreign Languages
National Education Association
1201 Sixteenth Street, N.W.
Washington, D. C. 20036
All Modern Languages
4. The Modern Language Journal (MLJ) is an estimable journal (8
issues a year) of the National Federation of Modern Language
Teachers Association. The fee is for the journal only. This associa-
tion is made up of various regional associations and the AAT's. If
you are a member of one of these, you are automatically a member
of the National Federation. Send subscription to:
Business Manager of MLJ
7144 Washington Avenue
St. Louis, Missouri
5. Publications of the Modern Language Association of America
(PMLA). The Modern Language Association (MLA) is another and
separate organization. It is an association for all modern languages,
including English. You receive 8 issues of PMLA. Membership in the
National Federation and/or the MLA entitles you to attend the
corresponding annual meetings held yearly in December. Send sub-
scription of $10.00 to PMLA (5 times a year) to:
4 Washington Place
New York, New York 10003
6. American Association of Teachers of French (AATF) National or-
ganization membership entitles you to a subscription to The French
Review (6 issues). Send subscription of $5.00 to:
Davidson, North Carolina
7. American Association of Teachers of German (AATG). The German
Quarterly (4 issues). The South Atlantic Division of AATG meets
in November in connection with SAMLA (South Atlantic Modern
Language Association). Send dues and subscription of $6.00 to:
Modern Language Department
University of Miami
Coral Gables, Florida.
8. American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese
(AATSP). A national organization with two chapters in Florida.
Membership automatically entitles you to a subscription to Hispania
(4 issues a year). Send subscription of $5.00 to:
National Secretary-Treasurer of AATSP
9. The Classical Association of Midwest and South. Choose the jour-
nals you wish. Automatically, you become a member of the Associa-
tion. Send subscription to:
Classical Association of Midwest and South
Classical Outlook and membership . $1.00
The Classical Journal and membership (9 issues) . $4.95
Classical Journal and Classical World and membership . $6.85
Classical Journal, Classical World, Classical Outlook
and membership . $7.75
10. American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Lan-
guages. The Slavic and East European Journal (4 issues) and mem-
Effective Teaching Techniques
The prereading phase should receive great emphasis because it
is during this period that the student develops attitudes and
habits in pronunciation, intonation, and aural comprehension
which will be factors determining his degree of success in de-
veloping the multiple skills of language study. The amount of
time devoted to the prereading phase will vary depending on
the age of the learner, his motivation, the degree of understand-
ing and ability of the teacher. Interesting research is being
conducted now regarding the time element.1
Because secondary pupils depend mostly on the printed word
for their education in other areas, they have to be forced to
reactivate the ear. Good listening habits will have to be devel-
oped. Abundant opportunities for systematic and intensive prac-
tice on sound discrimination and sequences should be provided.
Besides drills designed for this purpose, the pupils should become
accustomed to class routine in the target language. Occasional
spot checks with meaningful rewards to the pupils will provide
some stimulation. For variety, games based on listening can be
It is advisable that students have no paper, pencils, or books
at their desks during the prereading period. In fact, this policy is
good at any time when students are concentrating on listening
The teacher must exert determination during student repeti-
tion and recitation of sounds. A mumbled or very low-pitched
utterance is unacceptable. If the teacher consistently is strict in
reaction to the student who fails to respond in a well modulated
1 The Modern Language Journal, May 1965, "The Contributions of Psychological The-
ory and Educational Research to the Teaching of Foreign Languages." John B. Carroll.
tone, the latter will soon realize he has to make himself heard in
order to be an acceptable member of the class. How can anyone
expect to be graded in an audiolingual lesson when the grader
cannot hear him?
It must be perfectly clear that before any spot checks, games,
or subject content can be graded for aural comprehension the
teacher will have explained clearly the meaning of the foreign
language and not have left it to generalization or guessing. The
average pictures and play acting will confuse the student unless
clarified. The danger in visuals without an initial explanation
is that the teacher is referring to one object or concept and the
student is thinking of another. For that reason, visuals must be
closely correlated with the lesson and/or represent one item
Pronunciation of complete utterances is modeled several times
by the teacher as he walks around the room, and repeated 5-6
times by the recorded native speaker as well. These utterances
should be modeled at a normal rate of speed. Artificially slow
speech distracts the normal pattern of intonation, stress, and
linking, and even the articulation of individual phones. If the
utterance is more than one breath group, it should be broken
up and presented for practice in shorter meaningful units. The
procedure of beginning from the end of the sentence is advo-
cated because it helps to maintain the natural melody pattern of
the sentence and makes the memory of the line easier for the
EXAMPLE: Escuchen: Hable usted mas despacio por favor (Re-
peated five to ten times)
Repitan: Por favor (pause for class repetition)
Por favor "
Mas despacio, por favor (pause for class
Mas despacio, por favor "
Hable usted mas despacio,
por favor, etc.
"In dividing such an utterance, care must be taken not to sepa-
rate in such a way as to change the articulation of any of the
phones. For example, if despacio, por favor were made a unit, the
initial sound of "d" would become a dental stop rather than a
dental fricative as it is in the complete utterance.
"Possibly, even probably, some members of the (Spanish) class
will have difficulty in articulating properly some of the sounds,
such as the 'v' in favor. The sound should not be identified with
the letter nor the equivalence of 'b' and 'v' mentioned, because
this identification will strengthen the students' natural tendency
to pronounce this unfamiliar sound as if it were the closest fa-
miliar sound in English. The sound singled out for special atten-
tion should be practiced only in its context, however; and nothing
at all should be said about other sounds unless they are being
seriously mispronounced and mimicry alone does not appear
sufficient. The teacher may wish to utilize specifically prepared
exercises on the more difficult articulations."2
After the presentation of the dialog through mimicry-memory,
the transition from imitation to question response is made to de-
velop speaking skill. Patricia O'Connor in Modern Foreign Lan-
guage in the High School: Pre-reading Instruction lists the fol-
lowing four forms of dialog practice:
1. Teacher-Class (Class-Teacher). The teacher asks a question; part
or all of the class gives the answer.
2. Teacher-Pupil (Pupil-Teacher). The question is directed to an
individual pupil; the rest of the class monitors.
3. Pupil-Class. One pupil asks a question; the entire class or some
portion of the class gives the answer. The teacher monitors.
4. Pupil-Pupil. An individual pupil asks a question; a second pupil
answers; the class and the teacher monitor."
After pupils have memorized the basic sentences and prac-
ticed them in questions and answers, the teacher may further
drill on the structure of the sentences by using them as the
basis for patterned substitutions. This type of drill calls for a
certain amount of language analysis by recognizing separate
words and identifying the variations in the pattern. During the
first weeks of the pre-reading phase only very short pattern
drills should be used. It should also be kept in mind that the point
at which the language program is begun will influence the kind
of pattern drills used. The degree of difficulty and challenge may
2 Spanish, Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing. Bulletin of California State Dept. of
Educ. Vol. XXX, No. 4, May 1961 p. 20, 21.
SPatricia O'Connor. Modern Foreign Language in the High School: Prereading In-
struction. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, 1960.
increase in proportion to the contact time with the foreign lan-
guage and the motivation of the learner.
There are many kinds of pattern drills; space allows the men-
tion of only a few examples.
Simple Substitution Drills: The teacher gives a pattern sen-
tence which the class repeats. Then the teacher gives a word
which the pupils substitute in the sentence.
Example: He has the book.
the pencil He has the pencil.
the paper He has the paper
This drill can later be used for substitutions requiring changes in
Example: Pronoun substitution
I saw the house. I saw it.
I saw the car. I saw it.
I saw the girl. I saw her.
Progressive Drills: Substitutions progressively change the pat-
Example: I am studying with you.
like I am studying like you.
talking I am talking like you.
He is He is talking like you.
about He is talking about you.
With cue words-
Today I buy an apple.
Yesterday Yesterday I bought an apple.
Tomorrow Tomorrow I shall buy an apple.
With question cue-
When did you leave? I left at 7:00.
When did she leave? She left at 7:00.
The guiding rule to keep in mind when preparing and using
pattern drills is that the purpose of the drill is to link certain
meanings with certain sounds and to practice saying the right
sounds to convey the desired meaning.
Adaptation of Memorized Material
Furthermore, the instructor should realize that when a student
has memorized a few words and sentences in the foreign language
and can say them when given the proper cue, he is not actually
speaking the language. He must learn to manipulate these fa-
miliar items out of context. Therefore, adaptation of memorized
material to different context in this early phase of language
learning is very important because it leads the student to use
familiar material in an arrangement similar to, yet different from,
that already memorized.
Different vocabulary items in same grammatical pattern
Memorized sentence: Hello, Peter, How are you?
Adaptation: Hello, Mr. Jones. How are you?
Hello, students. How are you?
Memorized sentence: I like the magazine, but I prefer the book.
Adaptation: I like the book, but I prefer the magazine.
I like the pencil, but I prefer the pen.
I like the rice, but I prefer the potatoes.
Different grammatical patterns using same vocabulary words
Hello, John. How are you?
Fine, thank you.
How is Mary?
She has a cold.
What a pity!
Hello, John. How are you?
I have a cold.
What a pity! And Mary?
She is fine, thank you.
Adaptation of a memorized dialog in a new dialog and a narrative
John: Where is the library?
Paul: Over there. Are you going right now?
John: Yes, I have to look for a book.
Paul: I'll go with you. I have to read the newspaper.
John: My goodness! I forgot my notebook.
Paul: It doesn't matter. I have paper.
John: Where are the novels?
Paul: Right over there. I'll wait for you at that table.
John: But there are two girls there.
Paul: Is that bad?
John: Say, that brunette is a friend of my sister's.
Paul: That's fine. I'll save you a seat.
Adapted dialog:5 (Note: The days of the week will have to be
taught prior to the presentation of this adaptation.)
Joe: Mrs. Smith, are there many novels here?
Mrs. Smith: Yes, there is a novel on that table. Take it.
Joe: Good. What is it called?
Mrs. Smith: "Marianela." It is very difficult.
Joe: Thank you. What day is today? Goodness,
it's Friday. I'll have to read that book on
Saturday because the class is Monday.
Mrs. Smith: Wait, Joe. There are two more novels. Don't
you want those novels?
Joe: Oh, no, no! Thank you very much. I have
to read one. That's enough.
SSpanish, Level One. New York: Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc., 1963. p. 6.
6 Supplementary Materials A-LM. Curriculum Bulletin 20j. Miami, Florida: Board of
Public Instruction, 1964. p. 13.
In addition to pattern drills and adaptation of memorized mate-
rial, classroom games are helpful as a motivating factor and as
establishing correct habits of speech, especially in elementary
and junior high classes. In planning a game the teacher should
be sure it fits into the classwork, either as reinforcement or re-
view. Also the game should be simple, short, and interesting. The
following is an example of a game which is suitable for the
What Animal Am I?
Pin or hold the picture of an animal on the back of a child,
who then asks the class, "What animal am I?" The other chil-
dren give five clues. For example: "You have four feet." "You
are large," etc. If at any time, while the clues are being given, or
after all five have been called out, the child correctly says the
name of the animal in the picture, he chooses the next pupil to
be "It." If he cannot guess, the leader asks for a volunteer answer
from the class, that pupil then becomes the next "animal." This
game may be used with fruits, vegetables, and other items and
is adaptable to any language.
Relay games using classroom objects learned in dialog format
are very successful, IF the language being taught is used.
In junior high school, games involving team rivalry are suc-
cessful. For instance, divide the class into two teams. The leader
"pitches" a question to the first pupil on team one. If he answers
correctly, he moves to first base. The leader continues to ask
questions to team one, and the pupils answering correctly move
around the bases (designated points in the room) and to home.
Each pupil coming home earns a point for his team. When three
incorrect answers (outs) are made, the leader then asks ques-
tions to team two, following the same procedure. The team with
the highest number of points after an equal number of "innings"
has been played wins the game.
It is not impossible to use competitive gimmicks with the high
school students. Some of the most "sophisticated" classes have
demonstrated great enthusiasm in "learning" games.
The development of real reading ability as opposed to a de-
ciphering process is the objective of a multiple-skills program
which has an audio-lingual approach. No one has ever questioned
the necessity of developing reading skill. The result desired in
the past was reading in the sense of being able to translate from
the foreign language into English. It seemed obvious that the
way to acquire this skill was to practice translating. The reading
skill was generally checked by exercises in translation. Trans-
lation is NOT NOW an objective. Translation is a special skill
which requires special training. It has no place in a secondary
"In the secondary program, reading has two definitions:
(1) to pronounce phrases and sentences aloud with normal in-
tonation, in response to the stimulus of sequences of printed or
written letters (the expert native reader does this in a consistent
way, whether or not he knows 'the meaning of the words') and
(2) to follow printed or written sequences rapidly for compre-
hension, usually silent, while the eye scans whole groups of words
or sentences at a time."7
In Level I development of the reading skill follows a period of
abundant exposure to aural-oral language. The material pre-
sented for reading is only what the students have already mem-
orized. It may include not only the dialogs and basic sentences
but also the drills and variations that accompany them. It should
include specific exercises designed to establish the sound-letter
correspondences of the language.
When written symbols are introduced, a new and powerful
source of interference is likewise presented to the student. The
Roman alphabet, already well known and closely associated with
English sounds, must now be associated with foreign sounds, still
relatively new to them. Great care must be exercised by the
teacher so that the sounds which have been drilled during the
prereading period will prevail.
Interference of English sounds can be minimized if (1) The
nature of the problem is explained to the students, (2) the
7 "Foreign Languages in the Secondary Schools," of the 1964 Northeast Conference
on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.
teacher insists on the same high standards of pronunciation,
(3) the teacher distinguishes between sounds and letters, and
(4) the Spanish names of the letters of the alphabet are used.8
As the reading skill develops, recombinations of known mate-
rial are presented for reading. Following this are contrived mate-
rials that introduce new vocabulary and grammar.
A successful technique in teaching reading is rapid substitution
of a printed word in an otherwise pictorial array. "For example,
a four-unit sentence is displayed, using three pictures and one
(The man/arrives/at the house/at noon.) The noun HOUSE
is substituted for the picture. Then the words SCHOOL, LI-
BRARY, etc. are substituted. The student is forced to rely on
the printed word to complete the sentence.
Training in the reading skill can be continued in the labora-
tory. Tapes are prepared for material already done aurally and
orally, and students are furnished copies of the material to be
read. The student moves from reading of drills to sentence build-
up drills and connected passages. He is working on sound-letter
correspondences and word grouping.
As the student learns to read all he has learned orally he
should be introduced to selections especially written for reading
practice. They will be recombinations of known lexical and gram-
What is this skill writing? It is an active skill like speaking. It
must come after the student has experienced speech and reading.
Writing is a representation of sound on paper. While a complete
foreign language program does everything possible to teach this
skill it is easily understood that listening and reading will be
developed more rapidly and to a greater degree than speaking
8 Teachers Manual A-LM, Spanish Level One, Harcourt, Brace and World. New York.
9 Stack, Edward M. The Language Laboratory and Modern Language Teaching. Oxford
University Press, Inc. 1960.
"Write" has two meanings. "It means to spell in the sense of
making the proper choice of letters in the proper sequence in
response to both oral and written stimuli. It also means to put
down on paper what one wishes to express, using a style and
vocabulary appropriate to the material of occasion, informal or
formal, literary or technical."10 It is this second kind of writing
that is one of the long-range goals.
Writing in the elementary stages, like reading, is limited to
familiar material. Since, as in the oral work, the teacher should
make it easy for the student to be right and difficult for him to
be wrong, the most beneficial form of writing practice is the
exact copying of sentences which the student has mastered orally.
This is done simultaneously with the presentation of the
sound-letter correspondencies. "As the student becomes increas-
ingly able to respond in writing to both oral and written stimuli,
he should get practice writing drill lines in response to an oral
or written cue, and in writing exercises requiring such minimal
structural changes as changing a verb from present to present
perfect or an objective pronoun from singular to plural.""
During the prereading phase materials prerecorded on records
or tape can be sent home. The student should have the oppor-
tunity to practice in the laboratory or with simple equipment
some time before school, after school, during study hour or
lunch. Picture cues can be made, duplicated and distributed as a
basis for out-of-class recall. Reading in English about any of
many facets of the culture of the language being studied can also
Listening and Speaking
The four fundamental skills will continue to be developed in
varying degrees. As new materials and new formats are encoun-
10 Thompson, Mary P. "Writing in an Audio-Lingual Modern Foreign Language Pro-
gram" Teacher's Notebook in Modern Foreign Language Spring 65, Harcourt, Brace and
tered the teacher will explain the purpose and the hoped for
objective. All basic materials should be presented orally with the
teacher or tape serving as model. The modeling should be at
normal speed with attention to pronunciation and intonation. It
is after the initial presentation that laboratory equipment can
most profitably be used. In addition to being a tireless and un-
changing model, it can provide the limitless number of drills
necessary for the student to acquire new speech patterns.
Normally, there should be about six or eight frames (drills)
of one pronoun before introducing a second pronoun. After drill-
ing each pronoun several times, a "test" drill, including a mix-
ture of forms already drilled, will be given.
The variety of types of drills is limited only by the originality
of the one who prepares them and the type and quantity of lan-
guage learned. The presentation here is intended only as a sug-
gestion, as the entire scope is too vast to be included in this
For example: A combination drill to teach comparisons of
Master: Mary is pretty. Isabel is pretty, too.
Student: Mary is as pretty as Isabel.
Confirmation: Mary is as pretty as Isabel.
Student repetition: Mary is as pretty as Isabel.
Master: This chair is comfortable. Father's chair is com-
Confirmation: This chair is as comfortable as father's chair.
Student repetition: This chair is as comfortable as father's
The skills of listening and speaking are so intermeshed that it
is difficult to discuss one without the other. It is true that with
classroom directions, games, drills, etc., the student is listening,
but there is another type of listening that must be developed.
Hearing or auding is an active process not customarily developed
as a skill to the extent that speaking, reading, and writing are
developed. Specific practice in listening must be given attention.
Good listening establishes a basis for the speaking skill.
In listening practice the student listens, tries to understand
but does not speak. He will listen to a selection of known vo-
cabulary and structural items in a new combination or he will
listen to a selection in which he does not know all the vocabulary
and structural items but is expected to guess and get the gist from
intonation, contextual inferences, etc.12
The learner must never look at the written text while he
listens. If he does, the exercise becomes an exercise in reading.
Oral Language Manipulation-Level II
Great effort should be made by the teacher to encourage origi-
nal speech on the part of the student. This original speech, of
course, is CONTROLLED and LIMITED to what has been
taught. Any information which has to be looked up, studied, or
reviewed mentally is obviously not mastered by the student and,
therefore, is unacceptable and does nothing for developing free
speech. Some procedures for attaining this objective follow.
A. In directed dialog the student has been taught:
Teacher says Student says
Joe, ask your father if he 1) Dad, are you going to need
is going to need the car to- the car tonight?
Dad, tell him you think 2) I think not. Why do you
not and ask him why he want it?
12 Spanish, Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing Bulletin of the California State
Department of Education Vol. XXX. No. 4, May 1961.
Now-encourage Joe to give any sensible answer that he
For example: I want to go to Mary's house.
Fred does not have a car and we want to go
to the football game.
I want to take Fred to the airport.
B. The teacher can encourage the Dad to continue, and the
conversation will develop.
C. For any narrative presented as reading, the teacher can
ask that it be retold by individuals as they recall it. Stu-
dent A gives an initial sentence. Student B adds a sen-
tence, student C adds another sentence, etc.
D. Retell the story in the first person singular.
E. Retell the story, substituting different nouns.
F. The teacher may prepare for discussion many more de-
tailed questions in addition to those given in the text.
G. Use a conversation stimulus. The teacher explains a sit-
uation, gives the actual words of the first speaker, and
then calls for a continuation of conversation.
H. Show a visual stimulus and ask for an immediate verbal
All of these exercises are performed with books closed.
Contrived materials with new vocabulary and grammar con-
tinue to be the source of reading. The purpose of the reading
selections is to give the student an opportunity to read in the
foreign language with understanding and pleasure.
Usually a reading selection should be assigned as homework,
and the discussion in the target language should be in the class.
Questions should not be assigned until they have been discussed
As the students are assigned longer reading passages in late
second year, they must be told the techniques to use. Some sug-
1. "Read the first paragraph rapidly in the foreign language to get a
general idea of the setting, character, and frame of reference. You
will probably not get all the details, but you will at least have a
general idea of where the action is taking place and what is go-
2. "Re-read the same paragraph rapidly. This time more details will
fall into place on the framework you gained from the first reading.
3. "Write down a list of the things you learned from these two read-
4. "Repeat steps (1), (2), and (3) for each of the other paragraphs
in the assignment."'
At the second level, dictation of familiar material and manipu-
lation of structural points should be continued. The student
should be moved toward self-expression by constructing sen-
tences of his own, following a model with controlled vocabulary.
Some suggested procedures:
1. Rewrite sentences, changing the verb tenses.
2. Rewrite a paragraph supplying the correct past tense.
3. Add adjectives to a basic sentence.
The airplane arrives at the airport at noon.
The big white airplane arrives at the new airport at noon.
4. Write with the given words a new sentence like the model.
The three men will buy the pajamas.
young girls/to ask for/invitation
The young girls will ask for the invitation.
5. Construct a sentence using the items in the order given.
To sleep, yard, with, dog
The boy is sleeping in the yard with the dog.
I cannot sleep in the yard with a dog barking fiercely.
6. Change a dialog to a narrative.
At Level II much of the learning ought to be done outside of
class. Since the basic reading and writing skills have now been
acquired, daily assignments should be made. The most important
detail with respect to homework is the follow-up which should
ideally take place during the following class meeting. Students
will not take seriously an assignment if they see that it is not
considered of any value by the teacher.
Listening and Speaking
The goal of Level III is to move toward more extensive use of
language as communication. There should be fewer guidelines
and controls than in Level II. The students will be expected to
produce longer sequences of talk. The kinds of talk fall into two
groups: sustained talk-several sentences in sequential thought
-and exchange of words with one or more persons. Getting the
students to speak the foreign language is the most difficult chal-
lenge. True conversation involves complete choice on the part of
the student. "Genuinely free conversation is rarely attainable on
the secondary level without concomitant foreign travel, because
the growth in total experience continues to outdistance the
growth in linguistic expression in the foreign tongue. Relatively
free conversation, however, is attainable within the context of
The teacher will continue to employ all possible techniques to
elicit free conversation. Questions should be answered orally,
14 Modern Foreign Language for New Hampshire Schools. New Hampshire State De-
partment of Education, Concord, N.H. 1965.
and answered in longer and longer responses. Then the students
should begin to summarize the answers. Each summary will be
unique and varied.
The key word here is control. Mim-memming or vocalizing
will continue, but patterns learned in the elementary stage
should be USED and no longer drilled in the intermediate level.
"Drills involving complex structures such as conjunction and
subordination-ought to occur on the intermediate level, but
their use in conversation at both normal and fast speeds repre-
sents achievement on the advanced level. Thus what a student
practices on one level he must actually control on the next
If the student has thoroughly practiced all the necessary pat-
terns on the elementary level, and if he can use his limited vo-
cabulary to reconstitute acceptable utterances based on these
patterns so that they are readily understood by a native speaker
of the foreign language, then the student has speaking control on
the intermediate level. This is analogizing.
What measures can be taken to bridge the gap that exists be-
tween vocalizing and analogizing in order to effect real conver-
sation? There is no denial that cued drills are unnatural speech,
no matter how well designed they may be. "Even transformation
drills are in a large measure artificial. The type in which the
teacher presents a statement and the students make up questions
which would elicit such a statement, though an excellent teach-
ing device, is not really conversation: e.g., Teacher: Mon frere
est arrive au restaurant a cinq heures. Student: Qui est arrive
au restaurant i cinq heures? Oi mon frere est-il arrive a cinq
heures? A quelle heure mon frere est-il arrive au restaurant?
The question-response type of device and the directed dialog
represent a closer approximation to natural conversation. But
natural conversation is made up of more than question-answer
and command response. The only other apparent link between
drill and natural conversation is informal discussion. This is a
very effective technique when controlled. But it requires a su-
perior teacher to know how to channel discussion, correct only
15 1963 Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Language: Language Learn-
ing: The Intermediate Phase, "The Continuum: Listening and Speaking."
a minimum number of errors, and still maintain a high degree of
interest in order to encourage total student participation."16
The content of the material begins to change from contrived
material to adapted and/or edited selections from literature. The
phase of reading moves into a more advanced phase when the
vocabulary is large enough to permit reading without an editor's
The reading should usually be assigned as homework. The
principal objective is to provide students with an opportunity to
read on their own. Students should be advised as to the profitable
use of pictures, maps, and footnotes.
Questions relative to the reading assignment should be an-
swered first orally, whether assigned for homework or not. One-
word answers are satisfactory since this is normal in speech, but
the teacher should not permit such a practice too often. Encour-
age complete sentences. The students should be encouraged to
read and reread a selection before answering questions.
Some of the same types of exercises which have been prac-
ticed previously should become progressively longer and more
difficult. Grammar-manipulation, more involved sentence-com-
pletion and construction exercises are suitable. The paragraph
should begin to be the unit of practice and effort made for more
freedom of expression.
"One writing exercise appropriate for the third level is di-
rected narration. This exercise starts with a sentence that sets
up a situation: 'Think of a trip you have taken.' The student is
told what information he is to provide: 'Tell me where you went,
why you went there, who went with you, how you made the
trip, how long it took, etc.' Cued narration, which gives a first
sentence followed by a series of cues on which additional sen-
tences are to be constructed, is also a good exercise. The first
sentence could be Yesterday afternoon Anne and Mark decided
to go to the theater, and the cue words might be to be lucky, bus,
to stand in line, to be seated, play, applaud. Or, a brief dialog
might be given. The student would then write a narrative para-
graph leading up to the dialog and another following it. Each
paragraph should contain 60-70 words and five or six sentences.
"Fill-in exercises are also good. These may consist of three
paragraphs. In the first two, blanks are to be filled in, with more
blanks in the second paragraph than in the first. In the third
paragraph, the first and last sentences are given and the student
fills in no more than five sentences totaling no more than 80
"Other suitable exercises include answering a series of seven
or eight questions, then combining and summarizing the answers
to the questions to form a paragraph; changing a dialog to a
letter, or a narrative to a dialog; summarizing a particular sec-
tion of reading material in 100-125 words.""7
The teacher should remember that the student's knowledge of
the target language is still limited and he still needs models in
order not to produce an artificial language.
The students should be made aware of differences in written
language style from that of the spoken language. In all cultures
where literacy is valued there is a feeling that somehow what
people write is very superior in value to what they say. And
there are certain conventions which are observed in each lan-
guage. The teacher has the responsibility of bringing these to the
attention of the students.
Finally, writing exercises must be corrected soon after the
writing. Fewer assignments with careful corrections will teach
the students more than many assignments with cursory correc-
Levels IV, V-Listening and Speaking
The teacher should constantly evaluate himself, his program,
and the students' development. Any time a general slowdown
occurs in the growth of any of the skills the teacher must care-
17 Teacher's Notebook in Modern Foreign Language. Harcourt, Brace, and World.
Spring 1965. "Writing in an Audio-Lingual Modern Foreign Language Program."
fully analyze what went wrong. This almost daily analysis will
be of great value in helping the student in the skill of oral manip-
What is my objective?
Were students participating? If not, why not?
Who was really doing the talking, teacher or students?
Do the students express themselves with ease?
Would a native speaker understand them?
Any techniques that have been tried and proven should be
used again and again, always providing for growth in depth and
breadth of the students' ability to manipulate language.
This is the stage in which the student can take an unadapted
book of normal difficulty and read for meaning. It will be a pleas-
ant experience with no laborious translations and no frantic
looking-up of words.
The writing exercises may be longer and the controls fewer.
Leading questions to construct paragraphs will be more and more
general until finally, a single topic can be given. Writing r6sumes
and letters can be encouraged if the teacher has properly pre-
pared the students in respect to cultural conventions of the
All of the writing will still be pure student work, really rather
elemental, with no pretense of creativity. Writing will be the
logical outcome of experiences in listening, speaking, and
All writing exercises should be corrected, and soon after the
writing. It would seem to be more profitable to give fewer writ-
ing assignments and review them carefully than to give many
assignments and casually glance at them.
THE SELECTION OF text (see state suggested criteria page
23-25) and content material for the sequence and articula-
tion of language instruction should be guided by the objectives
to be achieved at a particular level, along with the techniques
and procedures to be utilized in implementing these objectives: 1
(1) The course should concentrate at the beginning on the learner's
hearing and speaking the target language. The treatment of
pronunciation and graphic presentation of speech should be pre-
sented. This is easily augmented by sustained pronunciation drills
throughout the course.
(2) The course content should make extensive use of realistic, in-
teresting dialogues, recorded by native or near native speakers.
(3) Technical structure should be presented inductively, with sum-
mary statements given only after drill. Drills should be extensive
enough to produce automatic response patterns.
(4) Translation should be used sparingly as a device in teaching
reading, since the goal of reading is direct comprehension, with-
out conscious item by item decoding. Consequently, although
reading of previously heard and memorized material may begin
early in the course, reading of previously unheard material
should not begin until the student has reasonable control of the
pronunciation and principal structural patterns involved in the
(5) Visual and audio-visual aids should be used as auxiliaries to the
text when possible.
(6) In order to liberate the student from his single-culture limita-
tions, the cultural values and patterns of behavior of the native
speakers of the target language should form a significant part of
the content of the linguistic material from the beginning-and
at every stage.
Using these criteria as guides, the teacher is able to evaluate
available textbooks and to adapt their content to local classroom
needs. The following paragraphs present some points for consid-
eration in selecting course content.
It is of extreme importance to realize that in order to accom-
plish articulation throughout the language sequence, each in-
1 Dr. William R. Parker, Modern Spanish.
structor must teach the minimum objectives of his particular
This does not imply curtailment of material, once the suggested
minimum has been mastered. When minimum efforts have been
achieved, the teacher is provided the opportunity to reinforce
what has been accomplished, utilizing the extra time to enrich
the course with additional materials.
Research has not as yet established any ideal progression for
the learning of structural items, and existing frequency counts
are not too reliable for the spoken language; therefore, in outlin-
ing the structural content for any level of study in the target
language the teacher should allow his judgment to determine
what is best for this particular situation. However, it is believed
that the teacher will be able to plan his drills more effectively if
he uses some sort of organizational procedure.
LEVEL I (Minimum competencies)
(1) Beginning phonology of the target language to initiate and rein-
force good pronunciation
(2) Practical association in daily conversation of the present indica-
tive of regular and irregular verbs
(3) If situation permits, the preterite of regular verbs and most fre-
quent irregular verbs may be taught in contrast
(4) Use of commands, with emphasis on those used in classroom ac-
(5) Use of gender and number
(6) Agreement and position of adjectives
(7) Use of demonstratives as needed in language development
(8) Indication of possession, including possessive adjectives
(9) Pronouns and their position in relation to the other structure
items in the sentence
(10) Common patterns of word order
(11) Pre-reading must be taught and actual reading based on verbal
ability begun before students are promoted to Level II2
(12) Writing should be encouraged in proportion to logical distribu-
tion of time based on mastery of the fundamental skills
(13) Mastery of basic fundamental skills (Item 1-12)
2George A. Scherer. A System of Teaching Modern Foreign Language Reading;
"Teachers Notebook"; Harcourt, Brace and World School Dept., New York, N.Y. 1964.
In Levels I and II the student should achieve a high degree of
fluency in the use of a restricted number of meaningful speech
patterns rather than become familiar with many less common or
variant patterns. The emphasis should be on language familiarity
1. Practical use of present tense and begin reassurance of the pre-
2. Introduce use of the imperfect in contrast with the two previously
3. Follow introduction of simple and compound verb tenses in pro-
portion to item 1 and 2
4. Common uses of the subjunctive in daily use of commands and
5. Frequently irregular verbs not learned in Level I
6. Comparisons of equality and inequality
7. Apocope and abbreviation, where applicable in language usage
8. Extend reading and writing in proportion to basic fundamental
9. Speaking, understanding and reading emphasized.
10. Reading for enjoyment and information
It is recommended that the most frequent uses of the present
subjunctive be introduced early at Level II if it is a fundamental
part of the morphology and syntax of the target language, and
much practice is usually required for its mastery.
LEVEL III (Beginning of Advanced Course)
1. Mastery and proof of competency of levels I and II
2. Practical use of all previously introduced tenses
3. Extensive application of grammatical structure in the careful
command of the language
4. Actual use of the more complicated grammatical structure of the
subjunctive, (if applicable) and compound tenses
5. Reading assignments for class discussion and understanding of
grammatical associations found in reading. Material should be
carefully selected so as to motivate students' interest
6. Oral discussions and use of the language in class participation
must become an established objective
7. Writing must be according to specific direction and close super-
vision of teacher
1. Content of program will be more complex and the students will
have more freedom in language activities
2. Mastery of Levels I through III and proof of competency
3. Full responsibility of correct language fluency in proportion to
4. All class activities conducted in the target language
5. Reading material extended to general prose, short stories and
poetry without definite responsibilities on literary chronology
6. Reading knowledge equated with the grammatical structure of
the target language
7. General readings on respective cultural values
8. Class activities including the performance of theatrical pieces
proper to this level
9. Full responsibility of all the fundamentals including correct
Testing is a necessary and continuous part of the foreign lan-
guage program. It is the means by which the student and teacher
are consistently made aware of the deficiencies and strengths of
the students' knowledge. The evaluative instrument may be a
short daily quiz, unit test, mid-term or final examination. It may
be subjective, objective or both. The subjective test provides
greater flexibility since more than one answer may be acceptable.
It is easier to prepare but more difficult to grade. The objective
test is precise and easier to check, but more difficult to prepare.
Many texts now have accompanying tests which have been
carefully prepared and offer much to the teacher. They do not
make provision for the special quiz for a specific situation which
may develop for an individual teacher. Furthermore, after sev-
eral years' use, the teacher will recognize the need for a "new"
Listening Comprehension Tests
Listenings include phonemic discrimination and aural compre-
hension. The ability to discriminate sounds is the ability to dis-
tinguish one distinct and definite language sound from another.
The ability to comprehend aurally is the ability to get meaning
through hearing and understanding the lexical and structural
items of the language. Phonemic discrimination and aural com-
prehension should be tested separately, as well as in combina-
1. Using the drills in the early stages
a. True-False Test. The teacher may read a number of statements,
each one twice. The student will write just verdad or NO es
(1) Cinco y dos son siete.
(2) Hay dos puertas en esta sala.
b. Action-response Test. The teacher gives rapid-fire directions
and the students must react immediately.
(1) Cierra la ventana.
(2) Levante la mano izquierda.
c. Multiple-choice. Before he studies reading, the student will
rely upon familiar sounds which have been drilled. The teacher
will say twice:
4A d6nde van Vds? Vamos
(2) a clase
(4) ahora mismo
2. Aural-pictorial tests
The student is given several pictures. As he looks at each picture
and hears the speaker give three possible descriptions, he chooses
the A-B-C description which fits the picture.
3. Phonemic discrimination (using writing)
a. The master voice makes a statement. On the answer sheet are
found expressions that look or sound approximately the same,
but that do vary in phonemic content. These test the students'
control of consonant and vowel sounds, linking stress, juncture
and hiatus, all of which are important to comprehension.'
Speaker: Il entrera a six heures.
Il entrera A six heures.
Answers: 1) Il entire A seize heures.
(on sheet) 2) Elle entrera a six heures.
3) Il entrera & six heures.
4) Il entire a seize heures.
5) Elle entire A six heures.
The items are read at normal speed, with a two second pause
between first and second utterance. The student is given six
to eight seconds to choose his answer. Timing is very important,
and therefore the taped test is most desirable.
b. Have the student imitate a model which produces a clear,
distinct, and authentic sound.
8 French, Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing, Bulletin of the California State Dept.
of Education. Vol. XXXI, October 1962.
4 Guides to Language Teaching in Classroom and Laboratory, Don R. Iodice. Elec-
tronic Teaching Laboratories, Washington, D. C. 1961.
4. Aural comprehension (using reading skill)
a. The student hears a question and is directed to check the
most nearly correct answer.
Speaker: 6Qu6 contest Vd. cuando un amigo le saluda:
2) Bien, gracias
3) AQue tal?
4) A las nueve
of a statement presented orally (using reading
Quiero comer porque
choices: 1) Tengo calor.
2) Tengo sed.
3) Tengo hambre.
4) Tengo frio.
c. Listening to a passage and a question and choosing from a
variety of written answers the only correct one.
Speaker: Hay muchos chicos en la casa de Juanita.
Escuchan discos y bailan. La amiga de Juanita
se llama Rosa y es de Colombia. A Pablo le
gusta Rosa. El quiere hablar con ella y invitarla
a acompafiarle al cine el sdbado.
6Por qu6 quiere Paco hablar con Rosa?
Choices: 1) Quiere escuchar discos.
2) Quiere invitarla al cine.
3) No quiere bailar.
4) Piensa ir a Colombia.
d. Listening to an oral passage with no written aids.
Same as above except that choices will also be given orally.
In order that the test not be one of memory rather than
language, the passage will be MUCH shorter and only three
choices will be given for the answer.
5. Aural comprehension and writing
a. A dictation
1) The speaker will read at normal speed. Students listen only.
2) The speaker will read in thought groups. Pupils write.
3) The speaker will read the complete selection at normal
4) The speaker will give time for corrections.
The purpose in giving a speaking test may be:
To check the pupil's pronunciation, intonation and rhythm.
To check the pupil's control of structure.
To check the pupil's vocabulary.
To check the pupil's ability to express himself.
1. Imitation test
a. It may be to check a single phoneme, ignoring everything else.
A sample item might be: C'est une jeune fille to test the pro-
nunciation of "u" or liaison.
b. The range in difficulty will be according to the level being
studied. The pupil is instructed to repeat whatever the voice
1) Luisa tiene catarro.
2) Quiero salir de la ciudad para no ver gente.
2. "Buildup" test
a. Tengo el libro.
b. Tengo el libro del senior.
c. Tengo el libro del senior que estd delante de la clase.
3. Reading aloud
This activity will indicate the pupil's ability to associate the
sound with the written symbol. Only in very advanced classes
should the pupil be asked to read orally material not yet pre-
sented in class and thoroughly practiced by him.
4. Directed responses
a. The student is requested to make statements or ask questions.
Speaker: Hoy es jueves.
Student: &Qu6 dia es hoy?
Speaker: &Qu le pas6 a Tom ?s?
Student: (any intelligent answer is acceptable)
Se cay6 en la escalera y se rompi6 un diente.
b. The cued answer keeps the response under more control.
Speaker:6Por d6nde se escape el gato? (ventana)
Student: Se escape por la ventana.
c. Directed dialogue. The student is directed to initiate a dialogue.
Speaker: Pregdntale a Juan si quiere ir al cine mafiana.
Student: iJuan, quieres ir al cine mafiana?
The student is asked to make a statement in response to what
is said by the master voice. The creative use of language can be
6. Response to a scene
The student is shown a simple line drawing involving one situa-
tion. He can respond to questions about the picture or create a
There are many more techniques to be used, of course. Any
that were effective as teaching devices can be as effectively used
as testing devices. (See chapter on Effective Techniques.)
It must be emphasized that in every year of language study the
constant development and refining of speech habits is important.
The teacher must be alert and recognize demonstrated compe-
tence as well as weaknesses. This recognition motivates the pupil
to increased effort.
"The complete reading skill combines recognition and compre-
hension of written words, sentences, and paragraphs with the
factors of speaking ability."5 Silent reading requires the ability
to recognize and understand the written symbols; oral reading
requires the ability to practice pronunciation, intonation, phras-
ing, etc. of speech. Reading tests should be designed to evaluate
student achievement in the two aspects of reading.
Many tests used to test listening can be used to test reading
by changing the auditory stimulus to a visual stimulus. There are
multiple-choice questions, matching items, and true-false ques-
tions which more nearly measure reading only. Other types of
tests are completion questions, combination of completion and
multiple choice, answering questions on content, and summariz-
Another effective check on reading is to construct a reading
selection, carefully structuring it to the ability of the students,
to give it for reading comprehension, and then to ask various
types of questions about the selection.
Many factors contribute to writing: spelling, punctuation,
capitalization, sentence and paragraph organization, and the use
6 French. Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing. Bulletin of the California State
Department of Education. Vol. XXXI, No. 4. Oct. 1962.
of structural and lexical items. The mechanical details are easy
to check but the other factors of writing are not.
Some of the speaking tests can be adapted so that the answers
would be written instead of spoken. Any of the procedures used
successfully in teaching writing can be used for testing. In fact,
it would be very foolish and unfair indeed to teach in one way
and test in another.
Additional suggestions for testing writing:
a. A topic sentence is given, and the student is advised to write a
paragraph based on the sentence.
b. A word outline is given, and the student is advised to write a
short composition based on the outline.
c. A series of questions sequential in nature is asked, and the stu-
dent is advised to answer the questions.
d. An idea is given, and the student is instructed to write a para-
Guiding Principles for Construction of Tests'
1. Test one factor of language behavior at a time.
2. Test vocabulary only in context of normal speech.
3. Keep the test consistently in the foreign language except for the di-
4. Make the directions in clear, simple English.
5. Give examples when there may be doubt about procedure.
6. Test only what has been taught. The point is the nature and extent
of the student's knowledge, not the teacher's.
7. Test everything you announce you are going to test.
8. Avoid anecdotes and incorrect forms.
9. Test cultural factors only in situational or linguistic context.
10. Use quality scales when subjective evaluation is necessary. (A qual-
ity scale is a series of responses varying in worth from best to worst,
each bearing an evaluation tag arrived at by consensus.)
11. The distribution of the relative weights of questions should corre-
spond to the relative importance of the skill or knowledge meas-
12. A test should advance the learning process by:
a. Giving pupils an opportunity to show what they know.
b. Showing pupils what they should know and what is expected
71959 Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages and French for
Secondary Schools, Bureau of Secondary Curriculum Develpment, New York State
Education Dept., 1960.
c. Making the assignment for study before the test as specific as
d. Returning corrected papers to pupils as soon as possible and
reviewing the correct answers.
Aids to Subjective Evaluation*
The teacher can prepare a grading sheet similar to the illustration.
This, in fact, can be duplicated and a supply made available to the
foreign language faculty. Each sheet can also be posted later for the
students' information. As the teacher listens to the student, she re-
cords the credit received. In this case it has been established that "1"
is for full credit, "1/2" for half credit, and "0" for no credit.
When the teacher has finished grading the series of drills, or other
papers, she adds up the grades and assigns numerical or letter grades
and transfers them to the regular class record book.
ORAL TEST GRADING SHEET for
(language) (Course) (Section) (Date)
No. Name 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total
1 05/ /
2 23os-g^ o o 3_ / / / -c
3 4 rA ,4,/ / / / o R
KEY ( 4 C
It cannot be overemphasized how important it is that for a subjective
test the teacher clearly have decided in his own mind the criteria and
have explained to the students what is being tested and how it is being
evaluated. Perhaps the specific item being tested is the correct articula-
tion of a sound, the mastery of a selected intonational pattern, the cor-
rect recitation of a pattern drill or dialog, etc.
French, Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing, Bulletin of the California State
Department of Education, Oct. 1962 and A Beginning Audio Lingual Testing Guide, 3M.
CLASS PRONUNCIATION TEST
+ or A Superior
or B,C Average
- or D Poor
0 or F Incomprehensible
//Ar_ A 4-- 4 4
Obviously, such a form could be duplicated in quantity and used for
different tests at different times.
TEST SCORING SCALE
/ __ _
. .~ n)0
i. /_/__ ____ ___
2. /3S cw E- --
3. (6/,4 sr7- ____ ___
PROFICIENCY IN COMMUNICATION SKILLS is now the
primary goal of modern foreign language instruction. Speech
habits are acquired most efficiently when the four language
skills are developed in the following sequence: (1) understand-
ing by ear, (2) speaking only what is understood, (3) reading,
initially, only what is understood and spoken, and (4) writing
only what is understood and spoken, as reinforcement of the
other three skills. Only students who have acquired some pro-
ficiency in these four skills should undertake the formal analysis
of grammar on the translation of a language into English, or vice
versa. The development of these linguistic skills through the
aural-oral approach emphasizes the use of new teaching methods
and devices for providing students with a mastery of the skills.
The basic principles underlying the learning of a skill is
student participation. The students' participation is not achieved
under traditional teaching methodology. All instructional activ-
ities in language learning need to be made interesting by relating
to reality. Proper techniques will be those which enable the
student to make the correct response and not those which point
out the errors in his answer. This multiple skill methodology
places more emphasis on instruction stimuli.
In the teaching program there is need for language reality-a
created setting which would approximate as closely as possible
the circumstances under which the foreign language is spoken.
Realia, which means real things, is one means of providing a
setting which helps a student react to the foreign language
quickly and automatically. It helps thinking in a new language.
Realia refers to models, exhibits, jewelry, ornaments, clothing,
dolls (authentically dressed), utensils, tools, tableware, products,
musical instruments, art objects, food and money. These tactile
and three-dimensional aids contribute much to enliven classroom
atmosphere and supply an element of limited realism. These ma-
terials should be used as an outgrowth of a sequence of experi-
ences when they can make the greatest contribution to the lesson.
Realia may be secured in many different ways. Since World
War II many children and their parents have traveled all over
the world and have brought back many of these objects. Many
city and county school systems have excellent audio-visual cen-
ters that provide realia.1
The use of audio-visual materials, such as pictures, slides,
filmstrips, and films serve as additional instructional stimuli to
engage the student in language activity. Audio-visual materials
can fulfill an important function in learning to speak a language.
They add drama to the learning experience as well as facilitate
the elimination of English from the classroom.
There are great possibilities in the use of audio-visual materials
which are closely integrated with the auditory and written mate-
rials of the language course. Materials incorporating aspects of
the target culture should be preferred over those depicting our
culture. For example, the meaning of dialog is much more ap-
parent if it is presented by means of a well-made film that places
it in a living context. The objects are identified without need of
teacher comment. The emotions, gestures, and reactions of the
speakers and the appearance of houses, streets, farm vegetation,
and the like are made clear to a degree impossible in any other
way, short of journeying to the country.
Filmstrips, slides, and pictures, usable with an opaque projec-
tor or overhead projector, may be used in pattern drills to
stimulate responses without the intervention of language, thus
strengthening the direct bond between words and the things
they represent. Charts, pictures, filmstrips, and realia may serve
simply as cues; or motion pictures, filmstrips, slides, charts, and
1 K. A. Mueller. "The Use of Realia Rooms in Language Training," California Journal
of Secondary Education, XXXIV (January 1959), pp. 39-41.
other pictorial materials can be used advantageously when ac-
companied by appropriate narration in the language.
Two auditory aids found in most schools are the tape recorder
and record player. A number of commercially made tapes are
available for most foreign languages. The tape recorder is also
useful for dramatizations, group conversations, and for narration
and sound effects to accompany pupil-made films and slides.
Recordings for use in the elementary school foreign language
program are available with filmstrips. Usually, a long-playing
33% rpm record furnishes the sound. Disc recording of folk songs
and dances fit well into the cultural aspect of the language being
Of the several media included in audio-visual materials, films
are best used in situations where the emphasis is on action.
Filmstrips, charts, posters, cue sheets, and realia have the advan-
tage of allowing the teacher to manipulate the materials freely
and thereby set the pace for learners.
The medium of television, with its inherent visual and audio
potentials, should be a natural impulse of motivation in the
teaching of foreign languages.
There are thousands of students from elementary through
higher education taking advantage of this means of instruction.
As a modern tool in the teaching of languages, any planning
intended to enrich classroom teaching must be initiated first by
school administration and by those responsible for the curric-
Once this has been decided, the classroom teachers must plan
carefully with the studio teacher, the producer, the graphics per-
sonnel and all of those people concerned with the transmission
of the material.
Besides being a television presentation, a language program
must qualify as a means to an end rather than an end in itself.
By this, it is meant that once the presentation is over, the class-
room teacher must "follow-up" audio-visual presentation, other-
wise the pedagogical intent would be lost.
Television presentations, as language lessons, must enrich and
reinforce the language sequence already prepared by the instruc-
tor and not based on isolated information with which the students
are not acquainted or on material not previously presented.
Since the classroom is the source for any instruction, all
materials presented must coincide with language guides and
courses of study to which the school system is already committed.
Sequence and continuity of the language program is essential
to the fundamental approach of learning a foreign language,
therefore, we must be aware of developing the cardinal principles
of listening, understanding, speaking, reading and writing.
Language and its creative uses are still taught in the classroom
by the classroom teacher. His standards, methods, and techniques
will determine the quality and quantity of language learned by
the student. As an aid for the teacher, a language laboratory is
the best known instrument for increasing students' contact hours
with the language.
A language laboratory is an area containing electronic and
mechanical equipment designed and arranged to aid in the learn-
ing of a foreign language. Language laboratories should be in-
stalled and operated in a fashion that will fit into the school's plan
The language laboratory provides a source and a place to use
auditory materials. The materials consist of record players, tape
recorders, listening posts, and various kinds of language labora-
tory components. When used with good teaching practices, the
language laboratory makes the teachers' efforts more effective
and increases the students' achievement in the language.
The advantages of a language laboratory are many. Primarily
they consist of:
1. Active participation of all students in a class, simultane-
ously, yet individually.
2. Listening posts enabling special instruction for accelerated
students, absentees, make up, remedial, and students with
special problems. Students may be given material tailored
to their needs without placing an undue burden on the
3. Use of a variety of authentic native voices as consistent and
untiring models for student practice.
4. Freeing the teacher from the tedious task of presenting
repetitive drill material.
5. Offering a convenient facility for evaluating and correcting
the performance of individual students without interrupting
the work of others.
6. Facilities for providing group testing of the listening and
7. Provisions for special coordination of audio and visual
materials in sequence or isolated presentations.
8. Assistance for teachers, who for various reasons do not have
adequate control of the spoken language, to improve their
The language laboratory makes its greatest contribution as an
integral part of a school program in which audio-lingual instruc-
tion forms the basis for the development of the language skills.
The language laboratory will fail in its objective if (1) used only
for enrichment, (2) expected to fulfill requirements other than
helping develop and maintain the listening and speaking skills,
(3) expected to teach the listening and speaking skills without
the coordination or integration of classroom activities and mate-
rials, (4) teachers are expected to prepare their own basic in-
The effectiveness of a language laboratory is dependent on its
being correlated with the classroom lesson, both in terms of
the materials used and the skill to be developed. This is accom-
plished by first arranging in detail the content of the assign-
ments for the classroom, then using tapes for the laboratory that
2 Joseph C. Hutchinson. The Language Laboratory. U. S. Department of Health, Edu-
cation, and Welfare. Bulletin 1961, No. 23, pp. 8-9.
are based upon the dialogs, readings, and vocabulary or struc-
tural exercises that form a part of the classroom work.
The main function of the laboratory is to provide an oppor-
tunity for the student to overlearn what he has begun to assimi-
late while working in the classroom with the teacher. This means
that the form and content of what he hears in the laboratory
must have a direct relationship to what he hears, says, and writes
in class. Unless the materials encountered in the laboratory are
not the same as the work in the classroom, the opportunity for
overlearning will not be realized. The length of an effective
language laboratory period ordinarily should not exceed a maxi-
mum of twenty minutes at one time.
Monitoring of the language laboratory by the classroom
teacher is essential to obtain the best results from this instruc-
tional aid. Students are better motivated and work at their maxi-
mum capacity if their own teacher is at the monitoring controls.
There is a psychological advantage to the teacher monitor. The
function of the teacher as an intellectual disciplinarian is im-
portant; it furnishes the same motivation to good performance
as does his presence in regular class.
It must be remembered that the language laboratory does not
teach a language but only provides an extension of those drills,
exercises, dialogs, and skills which have been taught in the
The use of programed learning materials in teaching machines
represents a potential contribution to American education. How-
ever, this can be a contribution only if some guide is devised to
evaluate these materials and machines.
Teaching machines do not, in themselves, teach. The teaching
is done by a program of instructional materials presented by the
teaching machine. Evaluation of a teaching machine thus requires
an assessment of the availability and quality of programs for
each type of machine, as well as its mechanical dependability.
Program learning is not confined to machines. Some pro-
gramed texts are available but they do not develop the skills of
listening and speaking.
The learning material which is placed in the machine is called
a program. It breaks learning down to the extent that the learner
progresses step by step in learning the new material. Programed
materials are designed to adapt to individual differences by
allowing each student to proceed at his own rate.
Differences in knowledge of foreign languages are met by
providing exercises in phonology, structure, and vocabulary.
These programs are especially helpful for advancing students
who show an exceptional talent for languages. Self instructional
programs can be adapted further to include programed material
on the culture and ways of life, providing the student with a
more complete knowledge of the language being studied.
At the present time a variety of programed material is avail-
able but not all programs fit all machines. Only those programs
that fit a particular machine may be considered available for
use with it. Although much of this material is still experimental,
big publishing houses have been stimulated to provide programed
materials. This stimulation has been brought about by pilot proj-
ects undertaken by material development centers and univer-
sities that are developing and testing programed material.
In evaluating the contents which a program professes to teach,
the program should be examined to determine whether the end
results are those which the teacher expects. Like other educa-
tional materials, programs labeled with the name of a particular
subject matter vary with respect to content and instructional
Prior to large scale adoption of this type of material for an
individual school, active experimentation with programed mate-
rial is encouraged.3
8 "A Statement of Teaching Machines," Florida Education, Vol 39, No. 3. Tallahassee,
Florida, November 1961.
Advanced Placement Program
The Advanced Placement Program as described in its own
booklet ". . is an activity of the College Entrance Examination
Board which provides a workable way to strengthen American
education. It is national, it encourages schools and colleges to
work together effectively, it tends to eliminate waste of time and
duplication of studies, and it stimulates students and teachers to
"The Program is offered in the specific interest of three
groups: secondary school students who are capable of doing col-
lege-level work; secondary schools which are interested in giving
such students the chance to work up to capacity; and colleges
which welcome and reward their achievement."1
Let it be repeated that Advance Placement is college-level
work done in the high school. This presumes then that the high
school offers what Nelson Brooks chooses to call the standard
course of four years with the fifth and sixth years for advanced
work. These fifth and sixth years are for the interested and capa-
ble students who wish to move into more study and analysis of
a second language and its literature. They have a satisfactory
control of the skills of language after four years and wish to keep
alive these skills and/or to continue to develop in depth their
understanding of the second language and its culture. If the fifth
and sixth year courses are set up in the high school to satisfy
the second above-mentioned reason, they can very well be an
Advanced Placement Program in Foreign Language.
1 Advanced Placement Program: Course Descriptions. College Entrance Examination
Board. 1962. p. 11.
As secondary school language classes become progressively
more audio-lingual, it becomes clearly evident that classroom
time is most precious. Many successful teachers seriously ques-
tion that the now available prescribed four-year programs can
be completed in four years. In other words, even a good teacher
has difficulty in teaching the complete standard program within
four years. And, at this time, the majority of schools do not even
offer a fourth year. Therefore, it appears that many developments
should take effect before a desirable Advanced Placement Pro-
gram can be arranged.
Classes in fourth, fifth, and even sixth year foreign language
should be offered, and students encouraged to study them. The
content of these courses and tests should be re-evaluated. At
present they are heavily weighted in the direction of literature
as opposed to language. It would seem wiser and more just for
the student if the entire language program of Advance Place-
ment would coordinate its suggested program with the philoso-
phy, objectives, and practices of progressive secondary schools
throughout the nation.
Professor Robert J. Nelson of the University of Pennsylvania
makes an interesting proposal in an article of FRENCH RE-
VIEW, May 1963, "The Relation of Language to Literature in
the Advanced Placement Program." In general, he recommends
more emphasis on the four skills and a part two of the test to be
on literature. The latter would be optional. The grades on the
two parts would indicate the type of college class the student
could pursue-more language or literature.
Sincere concern for the secondary program was discussed at
length at the 1964 Northeast Conference on the Teaching of
Foreign Languages and its summary recommended, ".. a
planned sequence of four-skill development throughout a pro-
gram comprising at least four years of study, preferably six.
While such a recommendation may seem obvious, there exists a
strong tendency to neglect or even abandon the audio-lingual
skills, even after good beginnings have been made. This tendency
toward premature extensive reading and premature concern
with literary studies, fostered by various pressures, undermines,
rather than strengthens, the ideal secondary school program.
When it is possible to state that the entire secondary school pro-
gram is clearly and unambiguously dedicated to the planned de-
velopment of listening comprehension, speaking, reading, and
writing without the kind of disproportionate emphasis on any
one skill which operates to the detriment of the others, a kind of
ideal program will be in operation which will produce a high
level of proficiency in interpersonal communication and inter-
cultural performance on the contemporary scene, while at the
same time furnishing the essential prerequisites for the subse-
quent more efficient and effective achievement of humanistic
College Board Achievement Tests
The College Board Achievement Tests have attained a position
of influence in secondary education all out of proportion to their
original purpose. The intent was not, and still is not, to evaluate
the instruction in any given school, but to evaluate students
from a wide variety of schools. Too many times school officials
have interpreted the College Entrance Examination Board
Scores (CEEB) as sole indicators of the value of a program or a
teacher. In their own publication, COLLEGE BOARD SCORES,
THEIR USE AND INTERPRETATION, this position is clearly
explained. This would seem to make the official position of the
CEEB clear enough, and it should be repeated as often as pos-
sible to school personnel responsible for decisions about cur-
It is also true that high school teachers and administrators
tend to attach more importance to individual achievement test
scores than college admissions officers do. Achievement test
scores are just one, and by no means the most important, of the
criteria reviewed by the college admissions department while
deciding on the acceptance or rejection of a candidate.3
Honest evaluation of the foreign language CEEB will prove
that there is no balance of types of questions revealing the stu-
2 Foreign Language Teaching: Ideals and Practices, 1964 Northeast Conference on the
Teaching of Foreign Languages.
SForeign Language Teaching: Ideals and Practices. 1964 Northeast Conference on the
Teaching of Foreign Languages.
dent's knowledge of the listening, speaking, reading, and writing
skills. Only one, reading, is tested. It is true that there is an
optional listening comprehension test, but that it has remained
optional indicates that it is not yet regarded as essential. Even
the Situation Question where the student is asked to select one
from several remarks most likely to be made in connection with
a described situation obviously does not test speaking. It tests
reading! Since all the questions are multiple-choice, the student's
ability to write is not tested.
The College Board officials often state that they do not wish
to influence the secondary school curriculum. Nevertheless they
do, and just as long as their tests continue to test reading alone,
some school officials will never understand that the implications
in the total picture of national and international relations de-
mand knowledge of the four skills of a language, and that class-
room procedures change faster than and move in advance of
All language teachers have agreed for some time that the de-
velopment of four skills is the only pedagogically justifiable goal
for secondary school foreign language programs and it is regret-
table that CEEB has not yet accepted and reflected this in its
There should be no compromising of one's convictions in order
to prepare any student for any test. In conclusion, it is well to
take note of a quotation from a booklet issued by the CEEB.
"Conscientious teachers can do only one thing with their stu-
dents' time; they can use it as efficiently as possible. 'Preparing'
students for a test, any test, can hardly be considered a valid ob-
jective for any high school course. To teach as much language as
possible, in the best possible way, must be the only ethical an-
swer to the question."
English As a Second Language
One of the newer developments in public school curriculums
is the recognition that English taught to pupils for whom English
is not the native language demands its own particular considera-
tion and a program distinct from that of English as taught to
pupils for whom English is the native language.
The concentration of ethnic groups in various geographic areas
has occurred over and over again in the history of the United
States. Repeated even many more times have been the heart-
aches, misunderstandings, discrimination, and complete mal-
adjustments in these areas, all of which were due to lack of
understanding between the two language groups involved.
Florida has become a concentration point for Spanish speakers.
To meet their impact upon society and to help create the best
environment for all concerned, public education must meet the
challenge and prepare a program whereby these pupils, for whom
English is a second language, have an opportunity to learn Eng-
lish by professionally proven materials and audio-lingual pro-
cedures. As their skills of listening, comprehending, speaking,
reading, and writing improve, the students will be able to move
into the regular classroom of any given subject. It must be obvi-
ous to the most casual observer that if an individual does not
communicate in any specific language, and is placed in a class in
which this language is the medium, he will experience failure,
not to mention a breakdown in his morale and that of the
Guidance and direction can be obtained by addressing in-
quiries to the Language Development Section of the United
States Office of Education.
The emphasis placed on modern foreign languages in no way
diminishes the value of Latin for the modern world, but in con-
trast with a modern language, there is a radical difference in its
nature. Although there is general agreement that the study of
Latin should be part of the "other-language" experience, it can-
not profitably be begun as early as that of a contemporary lan-
guage. Where both modern foreign language and Latin are
available, the contemporary language should be started early,
certainly not later than at the beginning of junior high school.
A good Latin course can later be pursued as a second language
by those with proven interest and ability.
The case for Latin is stronger if it is not put on a basis of learn-
ing English vocabulary or structure. Latin should be studied for
what it is, linguistically and culturally. However, the study of
Latin does clarify many points of English grammar and, through
the study of derivatives, increases English vocabulary.
In the study of Latin we should consider the following ob-
1. To read classical authors in the original with comprehension
2. To express the thought of the original classical text in cor-
respondingly good English. (This goes far beyond literal
3. To acquire a knowledge of the word stems and patterns
which are the bases of a large part of the English language.
4. To acquire an understanding of Roman civilization and its
contributions to the modern world.
It should be of great concern to this nation that the reservoir
of people who can communicate effectively in "neglected" for-
eign languages is extremely low. The term "neglected" is under-
stood to include all major languages of the world except English,
French, German, Italian, Russian, and Spanish. Statistics show
that three out of every four persons on earth speak natively a
language other than these six.
The study of languages which have been little taught in the
United States, but which are gaining importance as a result of
changing world conditions, is being encouraged by universities
and special programs under the direction of the U. S. Office of
Education. The citizens of the United States must possess the
ability to communicate effectively in order to participate suc-
cessfully in today's world. Technology has made the world into
one physical entity but the languages, institutions, behavior pat-
terns and cultural values remain as diverse as always and even
more strikingly different by their very proximity. With 460 mil-
lion native speakers of Mandarin, 95 million of Japanese, 80 mil-
lion of Arabic, 75 of Portuguese, 65 of Hindi, 46 of Cantonese,4
SVogelin, C. F. and Florence M. Voegelin. editors. "Languages of the World Now
Spoken by Over a Million Speakers. Anthropolgical Linguistics, 3: 13-22. November 1961.
and ad infinitum more of other languages, public education must
accept the challenge and seek out every opportunity to offer
"It has been proposed that every metropolitan school district
with more than 4,000 or 5,000 students in Grades 9 through 12
should start getting ready to offer one of these languages (or
even a more 'exotic' language) in the next two or three years.5
Portuguese and Italian
Portuguese should rightfully receive its share of emphasis here
in the state where there is so much interchange between the
neighbors to the south and Floridians. Florida is a natural spot
for the development of programs in Portuguese. The general at-
titude toward foreign speakers is good. A sister language, Span-
ish, is already well accepted, and the public is interested. Brazil,
politically and culturally, demands and should receive her fair
share of attention, and not until the average man can communi-
cate in Portuguese can he understand that culture. Special pro-
grams and scholarships at the universities across the nation are
being offered to encourage study and mastery of that language.
Therefore, it would be well for Florida schools to encourage
teacher proficiency in Portuguese so that such a course can be
offered in many of the secondary schools.
Italian is another language which is spoken by a considerable
population in Florida and throughout our country.
Besides its practical use, Italian holds a particular place in the
classics as well as in general culture.
Lately, there has been a definite emphasis in Language In-
stitutes that offer Italian for preparation of teachers at the sec-
It is of great importance that we cultivate interest in the
teachers of Italian and motivate our students to pursue the study
into higher education in order that well-trained teachers be per-
pared to teach in our public schools.
SD. Lee Hamilton. "Modern Foreign Languages and NDEA, Title VI," Higher Edu-
cation. U. S. Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare, Office of Education, July 1963.
Spanish For Spanish-Speaking Students
The presence in the schools of large numbers of students for
whom Spanish is the native language has demanded the develop-
ment of a new language program to satisfy their particular needs.
Their need to strengthen their knowledge in their own language
is completely different from that of the children whose native
language is English. Forcing the two groups of students into one
class and labeling it SPANISH will create problems and waste
time for students and teacher. Many such students are able to
communicate orally in Spanish but are unable to read or write
Spanish. For numerous and varied reasons these young people
find themselves in the unique position of having to learn English
and needing to learn to read and write Spanish.
The student's age can be no guide as to his level of proficiency
in any skill of his native language. Teacher observation and tests
are most valuable in establishing the course content. Language
teachers who are fluent in Spanish and experienced in the scope
and sequence of recognized programs in Latin American coun-
tries can give the most worthwhile guidance for development of
Choice of texts is very important. A text of Spanish prepared
for students whose native language is English is completely un-
satisfactory. For one thing, grammatical terminology is different.
Another, the modern texts of foreign language are aimed pri-
marily to teach very elementary speech patterns already known
by youngsters whose native language is Spanish. These facts
practically limit the supply of texts to those published in Span-
The teacher of Spanish to Spanish speaking students ideally
should be a native speaker of Spanish. So many shades of differ-
ences and interpretations, and so much slang exist among the
students, that a skilled teacher must be in charge in order to
guide, direct, and clarify the language native to them all.
The Twentieth Century citizen is a member of a world com-
munity. Educators have a responsibility to that community and
to the children directly in their charge to nurture and develop
any and all skills found in these children. It is a great loss to the
individual and to the society in which he lives if this expansive
horizon of his heritage is never revealed, and he never fully
realizes his potential of being a bilingual citizen.
Which Foreign Language to Study
The study of foreign languages limited to Western Europe is
no longer satisfactory for the demands of our national life. The
time is fast approaching when the world community in which the
United States participates will require the educated American
to be able to communicate in more than one foreign language.
The languages of the world now spoken by over a million per-
sons each are listed in the Appendix. Since it is not possible for
the student to predict which of the major languages of the world
he will need for his career, he will make his choice after seriously
considering various factors.
The elementary child seldom has the opportunity to make a
choice. One language in a FLES program is the standard ar-
rangement. This language is generally offered on the basis of
availability of trained teachers, the secondary program, and the
interests of the community. There undoubtedly would be a great
advantage in starting a FLES program in an uncommon language
since the very young learn with such ease.
The secondary student will generally choose to continue the
foreign language he began in elementary school. No matter what
stage of language learning he is in, or whether he is studying his
first or second foreign language, the exact language chosen will
depend upon school offerings, family interest, community back-
ground, vocational plans, and other interests.
There is absolutely no evidence that one language is preferable
to another in providing a basis for learning a second foreign lan-
guage. Any one language learned will facilitate the learning of
another language. The student will gain some control of a partic-
ular language as well as acquire language-learning skills and
Before selecting any modern foreign language, the student
should have the assurance that (1) the language is taught in a
listening-speaking-reading-writing sequence; (2) the sequence
of study will run at least three years; and (3) the language he
plans to continue in college will be a part of his twelfth grade
Advanced Placement Program. A program undertaken by in-
terested high schools in which college-level courses are offered.
The Program prepares examinations for these courses, and
many colleges grant credit and advanced placement of the suc-
cessful students. Inquiries should be addressed to the Advanced
Placement Program, College Entrance Examination Board, 475
Riverside Drive, New York 27, New York.
The Army Method. A system designed to permit the learner
to gain an active knowledge of much foreign language within a
short time. Teaching was by a team: a native speaker who
drilled and an analyst who explained through drills.
Audiolingual. A term proposed by Nelson Brooks to refer
clearly to listening and speaking skills and to teaching designed
for producing these skills. This approach does not exclude read-
ing and writing from the course.
Audio-visual. Listening and seeing skills; aids that provide for
development of these skills (discs, pictures, maps, films, etc.).
Bilingual. One who has equal command of two languages.
Culture. Artistic and intellectual achievements; beliefs and be-
havior of a language group.
Direct Method. In Webster's New International Dictionary-
A method of teaching a foreign language, especially a modern
language, through conversation, discussion, and reading in the
language itself without the use of the pupil's language, without
translations and without the study of formal grammar.
FLES. Foreign Language in Elementary Schools (rhymes with
Linguistics. A systematic study of languages in various di-
mensions: structurally or descriptively, geographically, histori-
6 Io Remer. A Handbook for Guiding Students in Modern Foreign Languages, p. 15.
cally and prehistorically, ontogenetically, i.e., as it develops in
the individual and comparatively.7 Linguistics helps us under-
stand WHAT we must teach-the system of the foreign language,
not just the item, and, within the system, the pattern or patterns
into which the item may fit.
Meaning. Words do not have any special significance in them-
selves. They stand for ideas, relationships, ideals. "Meaning" is
an insight beyond the symbolism of words.
MLA: Modern Language Association.
Multiple-Skills. Improved, modern interpretation of aural-
oral/audio-lingual methods used in the teaching of languages. It
explains that the "new method" teaches all the fundamental
NDEA. National Defense Education Act, passed in 1958.
NASSP. National Association of Secondary School Principals.
Pattern practice. Drills, usually oral, by which patterns of
sound, order, form are taught. They have only minute and con-
sistent differences. It makes lengthy grammar explanation un-
Programed Learning. Any planned course of study whereby
the material is presented in small amounts, steps, that must be
learned in sequence, and that give the student immediate con-
firmation of his correct answer and correction of any error.
Reading. (1) Recognition of speech symbols as graphic signs
on a printed page. (2) Reading for meaning with a minimum
intervention of English.
Reinforcement. Anything that strengthens a correct statement
and makes highly probable the repetition of that correct state-
Structure. The various elements of the grammar considered in
terms of their functions and relationships.
Target language. A second language that is being learned.
SRobert Lado. "Linguistics and Foreign Language Teaching," Language Learning,
Special Issue No. 2, March 1961.
Teaching machine. Any device that mechanically handles
programed materials that a student can operate himself. This
does not mean a complicated machine. The most important ele-
ment is the program content itself.
Vocabulary. "The least characteristic feature of a language is
its vocabulary; this is why vocabulary items are so easily bor-
rowed by one language from another, whereas sound patterns
or syntax patterns are not transferable. The learner's task is first
of all to deal with sound, order, and form, using only a minimum
of vocabulary." (Nelson Brooks, p. 224.)
Writing. "The English word 'write' has two meanings. It means
to spell, in the sense of making the proper choice of letters in the
proper sequence in response to both oral and written stimuli. It
also means to put down on paper what one wishes to express,
using a style and a vocabulary appropriate to the material or the
occasion-informal or formal, literary or technical. It is the sec-
ond kind of writing, writing as expression, that must be one of
the long-range objectives of any modern language program. It
should be obvious, however, that one can hope to attain this ob-
jective only by proceeding deliberately through a series of steps
which lead toward the ultimate goal."8
Some Principal Languages of the World
Afrikaans (South Africa) ............................ 4
Amharic (Ethiopia) .................................. 8
Arabic ........................................... 89
Bengal (1) (India Pakistan) ......................... 89
Cantonese (China) ................................. 45
English ......................................... . 301
French .......................................... 72
German ......................................... 120
Hindi ........................................... 171
S Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, 1963. "Language
Learning: The Intermediate Phase." Wm. F. Bottiglia, ed.
Japanese ......................................... 100
M alay-Indonesian ..................................... 75
Mandarin (China) .................................... 530
Portuguese ......................................... 88
Russian (Great Russian only) .......................... 176
Siamese ........................................... 23
Spanish ........................................... 166
Urdu (1) (Pakistan, India) ............................ 55
Vietnamese ......................................... 28
(Figures indicate the number of millions of people who speak
1. A Course of Study in Elementary German, French, Spanish. 1960,
Seattle Public Schools.
2. Belasco, Simon. Anthology for Use with a Guide for Teachers in
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3. Bishop, Reginald G., Jr., editor Foreign Language Teaching: Chal-
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*Most state bulletins are revised regularly.
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better Sclic its