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Critical reflexive logs

Second language teachers need to reflect closely on their own relationship to the target language, their experiences with language learning and how they aim to develop different facets of their teaching. 

To help language teachers with this, I have developed a critical reflexive logs activity that I ask them to complete each wek over the course.

STEP 1 : My journey with and usage of the target language 

First, I ask teachers to draw their linguistic journey with the target language. How did they learn it? Where? Over what time? Then I ask them to indicate what is their use of the language: how often do they use it? Daily? Weekly? Monthly? In what contexts? 

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STEP 3 : Log and reflect on professional learning goals 

Here, I ask second language teachers to log and document their professional learning goals. I encourage them to engage in at least 1 professional learning activity per week.

 

Next, I ask the to reflect critically on what they are doing and how this can inform their language teaching practice. The aim is not simply to report what they did, but instead to think critically about how they professional learning activities they are engaging in is helping them learn who they are as a target language user and teacher. They are expected to make links to important linguistic, intercultural, pedagogical and socio-emotional considerations

STEP 3 : (Re)/(De)constructing my language teaching practice 

Second language teachers need to reflect closely on their own relationship to the target language, their experiences with language learning and how they aim to develop different facets of their teaching. 

To help language teachers with this, I have developed a critical reflexive logs activity that I ask them to complete each week over the course.

STEP 2 : Establishing my professional learning goals 

Next, I ask teachers to establish their strengths and weaknesses based on the Four Pillars for second language teacher success: linguistic competence, intercultural competence, pedagogical knowledge and skills, collaborative professionalism. These are based on prior research on second language teacher learning, and my own observations of what second language teachers need to develop strong professional identities that help them succeed over the long-term in the profession. 

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Once they have established their strengths and weaknesses, they select professional learning activities that they would like to engage in to improve their practice as a language teacher and user. It is important here to acknowledge the overlap between professional and personal use of the language, as each reinforce and strengthen the other. 

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STEP 3 : Logging my professional learning activities 

Next, teachers log their own professional learning practice in Table 2, based on their own professional learning goals and needs.

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STEP 4 : (De)/(re)constructing my teaching practice 

Each week, I ask teachers to write a 500-word (max) reflection in their journal. The goal is to reflect critically on their professional learning practice (Step 2) by addressing their learning objectives according to the 4 pillars (which you noted under the column What I want to develop in Step 1). I encourage teachers to think carefully about their personal development (as an English/French speaker) and professional development (as an English/French teacher). To strengthen their teaching skills, I ask them to make connections between the concepts, theories, and practices we learn in the course and in the curriculum.

Feel free to use this activity and adapt it as you see fit for your learners.