I attended the ACTFL conference in Philadelphia on November 16-18, 2012. In addition to a poster presentation on “Teaching Advanced German” at the AAUSC (American Association of University Supervisors and Coordinators) business meeting, I gave a presentation on “Turkish for Beginners in Intermediate German”, as part of a session on short films in the intermediate classroom. I attended a similar session on Sunday morning, during which instructors presented the same German TV series as part of a semester-long syllabus for advanced German. Questions and comments by the audience following the sessions sparked the idea of creating an online project, where all the materials for this series that have been developed by different instructors could be saved in one place. Ideally, instructors could build on what has already been developed and engage interactively with the material and with other instructors.
I also attended a session, conducted by Heidi Byrnes and Marianna Ryshina-Pankova from Georgetown’s German department, on multiple literacies. This approach fits nicely into college programs that seek to design a text- and task-based curriculum that combines the teaching of language, culture and literature from the first semester of language study up to the introduction to literature, as promoted by the MLA report.