Post information, resources, and materials that others can use as they advocate for the importance of teaching and learning world languages here.


"You need to be proactive so that you don't have to be reactive." Tammy Dann

"Before you advocate, you have to have something worth advocating for." Linda Mayer


Guiding Questions


  • Why is advocacy so important?
  • How can language teachers take advantage of formal opportunities to advocate for language education?
  • How can language teachers take advantage of informal opportunities to advocate for language education?
  • How can language teachers enlist students, parents, colleagues, and community members in advocacy efforts?
  • How can language teachers CREATE advocacy opportunities in the course of their daily activities?




Key Principles of Advocacy


Advocacy is a perspective that guides the way a language educator interacts with others in
  • Communication - Produce a constant stream of communication that advocates for early language learning, creates awareness of both the immediate and long-term benefits of language study, and highlights student and program successes
  • Culture - Create opportunities for those around you to enjoy experiences regarding the target culture
  • Connections - Look for opportunities to connect with others and to influence their perspectives re: language learning
  • Comparisons - Make sure that the information others have is CREDIBLE. Get your facts straight by reading blogs, organizational newsletters, and research and use them to help others distinguish between facts and fiction about language learning.
  • Communities - Make yourself, your students, and your program VISIBLE by inviting the community into your classroom and take your classroom and language learning into the community



Agenda - Advocacy




Practices: Getting Innovations Into The Box

Stages of Innovation - In order to advocate effectively, it is important to understand that your audience is likely to be comprised of a number of different groups with distinct characteristics, each of which needs an approach tailored to their specific needs and concerns.

Landscape of the Technology Adoption Cycle (Bell Curve of Adopters) - What are some of the ways that advocacy can be used to bridge the chasm between early adopters and the early majority?

Phases of Adoption - By considering how the perspective of each person you encounter corresponds to the yellow chart in this article, you can better identify where they are on the adoption continuum regarding the initiative you are proposing and what kind of support they need in order to move to the next phase.

Elevator Advocacy in 30 Seconds or Less:










Products: Resistance

Change & the Walls of Resistance - This graphic demonstrates the key role that perspective plays in the change process and illustrates the high cost of a major shift in perspective

Where Do Change Initiatives Break Down? - Knowing-Doing Gap - A great synopsis of some of the factors that keep people who know what to do from doing it.

Beyond Resistance Article - Outlines 3 majors reasons people resist and offers suggestions for addressing each one.



Designing for Change: Getting Around the Wall with Paradigm Shifts (The Power of Combining Design & Emerging Technologies)

Rhetorical Triangle - This graphic depicts 3 key elements that must be considered when designing advocacy efforts designed to produce change

Stages of Change, Enabling Factors, & Channels - This graphic lists the stages of change, the kind of support that is needed at each level, and the kind of media that is most well-suited to providing that support.

Text & Graphical Layout - FANTASTIC summary of the what, why, & how of basic principles of graphic design from the Non-designer's Design Book by Robin Williams. Beautiful design, solid visual examples and non-examples, each principle in its own tab, but all visible from the homepage.

Basic Principles of Visual Design - A one-page PDF handout that outlines the basic principles of graphic design (proximity, alignment, repetition, and contrast) from The Non-designer's Design Book by Robin Williams that are explained in the site above.

The Principles of Design - Expands on the 4 basic principles of design (Proximity, Alignment, Repetition, & Contrast) and includes examples and links to resources that emphasize the cognitive and psychological bases of the PARC principles.



Publicizing Your Professionalism


  • Resumes
  • Websites
    • Google Page Creator - Choose a template, enter your text, and publish your page with this free, easy-to-use, online tool from Google.



Publicizing Your Program

What do you wish parents, administrators, colleagues, and community members understood about learning a language? About your program? About your students? THESE are the messages you should consider using the items listed below to promote.




  • Coloring Books
    • Dumpr - This free online suite of tools allows you to edit your Flickr photos in order to turn them into coloring book images (VERY COOL), make them look old, turn them into globes, or add reflections. You can then save them to your Flickr account. (Still in beta) http://www.dumpr.net




  • Postcards - Have students write why learning a language is fun or important on the back of a postcard and then distribute them to people in your neighborhood or community. This can be done electronically (Idea from Jennie Frazier)



    • Generator Blog - A fantastic blog that contains links to all sorts of free, interesting generators (such as cereal boxes, insurance cards, money, etc.) that would be great tools for students to use in creating creative advertising campaigns

  • Scrapbooks
    • Scrapblog - Combines the purposes and multimedia features of blogging with the visual affordances of scrapbooking. Comes with built-in templates and can accommodate music and video too http://www.scrapblog.com

    • VoiceThread - Easy way to connect photos and voices--particularly useful for emphasizing language without ignoring visual (in FL classes, for example). Would also be great for capturing family history.


  • T-shirts
    • SnapShirts.com - Type in a website and it will generate a word cloud for a t-shirt based on the most commonly used words on the site that you can customize.


Advocacy Examples


Fairfax County Public Schools - Links to information on various program types (FLEX, FLES, & Two-way Immersion), along with promotional videos (streaming).

Japanese FLES Program Website - A website created by Jessica Haxhi and her colleagues to publicize their program. - chericem1 chericem1

Brigham Young University German Week - A week of creative events on campus that involved anyone and everyone (not just students of German)- CarrieEGold CarrieEGold

Rhyme Celebration 2007 - Connecticut Council of Language Teachers (CT COLT) - Video of elementary students performing rhymes and poems in different languages.- mcdyer mcdyer






Advocacy Resources




I Love Lucy in Paris: A Matter of Translation

Fortune, Tara W., & Tedick, Diane J. (2003, August). What parents want to know about FL immersion programs. CAL. (EDO FL-03-04). Washington, DC: Center for Applied Linguistics. Retrieved May 26, 2006, from http://www.cal.org/resources/digest/0304fortune.html - A short digest that provides useful background information on FL immersion programs. - chericem1 chericem1

Frantz, Alan, C. (1996, Fall). Seventeen values of foreign language study. ADFL Bulletin. 28, no. 1, pp. 44-49. Retrieved June 12, 2006 from http://www.ade.org/adfl/bulletin/v28n1/281044.htm - Based on a survey of higher education FL professionals a decade ago, the reasons provided still strike a chord. (Submitted by Steve Brock).

Panetta, Leon (1999, May). Foreign language education: If 'scandalous' in the 20th Century, what will it be in the 21st Century? Stanford, CA: Stanford Language Center. Retrieved June 12, 2006 from http://language.stanford.edu/about/conferencepapers/panettapaper.pdf - Historical overview from Clinton cabinet member about the lack a federal language policy in the United States. (Submitted by Steve Brock).

Weizbicki, Cynthia (n.d.). Tips for conducting a public advocacy workshop. Washington, D.C: Joint National Conference on Languages. Retrieved June 12, 2006 from http://www.languagepolicy.org/advwkshop.html - Practical tips from the Joint National Conference on Languages (JNCL) about conducting an advocacy workshop. The audience here would be language teachers per se. (Submitted by Steve Brock).


Technological Tools for Facilitating Advocacy


Audacity – Phenomenal, free software you can download and use just like a tape-recorder. You can use it to have students create sound files that explain why learning a foreign language in elementary school is important, and then incorporate those files into other projects. You can also use it to edit, layer, or remove background noise from audio tracks. Save the files as MP3s that can be exported to iPods that parents and community members could listen to at their convenience. http://audacity.sourceforge.net/ - chericem1 chericem1

Blogger - Use a variety of pre-made templates to create your own blogs that support the uploading of media-based content for free. Blogs can function as particularly effective tools for leaders who need a way to articulate beliefs, communicate vision, and educate community members about the importance of early language learning programs. A collaborative blog with multiple authors can also be a powerful way to initiate conversations with community members about initiating, implementing, and sustaining early language programs. http://www.blogger.com - chericem1 chericem1

Brochure Creator - Design brochures and flyers that advertise your program and advocate for early language learning with just a few clicks by selecting themes and templates, editing the text, adding your own images, and printing. - chericem1 chericem1

BubblePLY - Allows you to add speech and thought bubbles to any online video, which means that you can now visually annotate existing videos about early language learning in ways that draw viewers' attention to important ideas. http://www.bubbleply.com/default.aspx - chericem1 chericem1

ClassTools - Provides flash-based templates for the creation of graphic organizers, puzzles, and worksheets. Use them to create trivia quizzes about the benefits of early language learning to raise awareness in the community. http://www.classtools.net/ - chericem1 chericem1

ClustrMaps - Lets you add a cluster map to your website that shows the geographical locations of all its visitors. A great way for you to keep track of the reach of your advocacy efforts. http://www.clustrmaps.com - chericem1 chericem1

Comeeko - Free, well-designed software that lets you create your own comic strips (using photos or images) and save them for others to view. A light-hearted way you can advocate for your program. http://www.comeeko.com - chericem1 chericem1

De.licio.us - This free social bookmarking site allows you to create, organize, and share an annotated list of online bookmarks to your favorite websites with colleagues, students, parents, and community members. By adding new links and then setting your professional blog, class website, school home page, or organization website to receive them, you continuously "feed" the community quality information about early language learning without any extra work! - chericem1 chericem1

Dumpr - This free online suite of tools allows you to edit your Flickr photos in order to turn them into coloring book images (VERY COOL), make them look old, turn them into globes, or add reflections. You can then save them to your Flickr account. Raise awareness of what you are doing in your program by turning photos of your activities into coloring pages and sending them home with students. (Still in beta) http://www.dumpr.net - chericem1 chericem1

Evite - This site allows you to design custom invitations for various kinds of events, draft a guest list, send the invitations, and track the responses automatically. You can choose from pre-made themes and templates, or create your own. A convenient way to keep parents informed in a professional way. - chericem1 chericem1

FDs Flickr Toys - Some FUN things you can do to Flickr photos (such as create CD covers, magazine covers, mosaics, trading cards, etc.) that would be fun ways to promote language learning. http://bighugelabs.com/flickr/ - chericem1 chericem1

Flickr - Allows you to create libraries of images that you can share with others and is a particularly good place to "store" a shared collection of photos of the activities in your program for parents to access. http://www.flickr.com

Generator Blog - A fantastic blog that contains links to all sorts of free, interesting generators (such as cereal boxes, insurance cards, money, etc.) that would be great tools for students to use in creating creative campaigns for promoting language learning - chericem1 chericem1

Gliffy - An online application that allows you to create diagrams and share them with others. Could be used to help parents visualize the structure of your district's program. http://www.gliffy.com - chericem1 chericem1

Go2Web2.0 Directory - A handy directory of Web 2.0 services, many of which can be used to support advocacy efforts. - chericem1 chericem1

Google Alerts – Lets you have Google notify you via an e-mail message when anything is posted on the web on the topic of your choice. A great way to keep yourself informed about the latest news in foreign language. http://www.google.com/alerts/ - chericem1 chericem1

Google Reader - After creating a free account, students can use this service to keep track of the webpages to which they have "subscribed" (for free and very easily) using RSS technology. Parents can "subscribe" to your blog or their children's blogs and easily keep track of who has posted new content. http://www.google.com/reader

Google Scholar – This search engine returns only scholarly articles and books, tells you how many people have cited them, and links you to related articles. Great for gathering research-based information that you can use for advocacy purposes. http://scholar.google.com - chericem1 chericem1

Jumpcut - Allows you to edit digital video for free online. An easy way to produce advocacy videos. http://www.jumpcut.com - chericem1 chericem1

Keep Toolkit - A free, online project planning template that allows students to input images, text, and video into different "boxes" to create a shareable "project portfolio" that can then be shared with parents and community members. http://www.cfkeep.org - chericem1 chericem1

Motivator - Create your own posters to publicize your program for free with a digital photo and a few clicks. Download them, e-mail them, print them, or upload them to Flickr. You can also order print copies. http://bighugelabs.com/flickr/motivator.php - chericem1 chericem1

Pandora - Type in your favorite artists and Pandora will create "stations" of streaming music that is similar to the work of the artists you have selected, based on research from the Music Genome Project. You can create up to 100 stations for free (registration required)! A great way to encourage older students to listen to music in the target language. http://www.pandora.com - chericem1 chericem1

Pikipimp - A free, online site that lets you upload pictures, add all sorts of accessories and speech bubbles to them, then save them. The site will generate a URL where the pictures can be viewed, as well as code for your webpage. Students will have fun editing their images for their "public." http://www.pikipimp.com - chericem1 chericem1

Protopage - Ever wonder what a Web 2.0 webpage will look like? Well, here's the answer! Register for free to get your own page, then customize the content by clicking on any of the tabs and altering their contents. Make as much as you like public or private. Like someone else's content? Simply click import and watch it all get added to your page! A great way to collect, categorize, and share resources for students, parents, and community members (simply keep each collection in a different tab)! - chericem1 chericem1

Quickmaps - Allows you to pinpoint locations on a Google map, title and annotate the map, draw on the map, save all your annotations, and then generates a code you can embed into your blog or website to display the map. Very useful for showing the widespread nature of a language program in a district. http://www.quikmaps.com/ - chericem1 chericem1

Scrapblog - Combines the purposes and multimedia features of blogging with the visual affordances of scrapbooking. Comes with built-in templates and can accommodate music and video too. A super tool for keeping parents and community members in the loop regarding your students' and program's successes. http://www.scrapblog.com - chericem1 chericem1

Singshot - American Idol meets You Tube in a Web 2.0 sort of way . . . record and upload songs just like you might do with photos to Flickr. People can vote on them, etc. This could be a fun way for students to share songs and rhymes with parents (only with parental permission, of course). http://www.singshot.com/index.html - chericem1 chericem1

Slide.com - Use premade themes to create slideshows from your photos that you can embed in your blog or website. An easy way to SHOW parents and community members what is going on in your classroom. http://www.slide.com

The Amazing You Tube Tools Collection - A collection of tools to help those interested in using/publishing materials to You Tube. - chericem1 chericem1

Tubes - Allows users to drag and drop content (audio files, bookmarks, documents, e-mail contact lists, spreadsheets, videos) into a "tube" that can then be accessed by all those who have been invited to share it. Invitees can also upload content to the tube, making project collaboration easier. The latest versions of content in the tube synch up when the user is online. Click on the Download link to see a 30-second demo. A great way to involve parents and community members in your language program. - chericem1 chericem1

Wikispaces - Allows you to set up collaborative work spaces where multiple people can collaborate. Allows uploading of documents, files, images, and multimedia in addition to basic text, and includes discussion boards for every page, editing histories, revert options, RSS subscriptions, and the ability to review recent changes. A great way to involve parents and community members in your language program. http://www.wikispaces.com - chericem1 chericem1