According to ACTFL, the goal of the five “C” areas (Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities) is to “prepare learners to apply the skills and understandings measured by the World-Readiness Standards, to bring a global competence to their future careers and experiences.”

We’ve got strategies to help you bring these “C”s to life in your classroom!

1. Communication

What’s the C? Communicate effectively in more than one language in order to function in a variety of situations and for multiple purposes.

  • Interpretive Communication: Learners understand, interpret, and analyze what is heard, read, or viewed on a variety of topics. 
  • Interpersonal Communication: Learners interact and negotiate meaning in spoken, signed, or written conversations to share information, reactions, feelings, and opinions. 
  • Presentational Communication: Learners present information, concepts, and ideas to inform, explain, persuade, and narrate on a variety of topics using appropriate media and adapting to various audiences of listeners, readers, or viewers.

Tips for Building Student Communication

  1. Start with the end goal in mind. Consider the situations in which native speakers would use the language, in each mode, that you want to focus on during a particular lesson or unit. You can then build tasks that lead to students being able simulate that situation.
  2. Stay authentic. Don’t force communicative situations. Stop and ask yourself if the activity, task, or topic of discussion takes place in the real world or only in the classroom. Classroom activities and tasks should help build foundations that lead to real-world tasks.
  3. Keep students’ proficiency levels in mind and set appropriate expectations. Push students to grow in the language, but don’t hold them to a standard beyond their ability.
  4. Create a word wall. It’s a helpful way to provide support for students and encourage them to stay in the target language, since they can always reference it when needed. Word walls also help set the expectation that students do not need to know every word and are allowed to look for help while staying in the target language. (Learn more and get a few tips here.)
Bringing the 5 C’s to Your Classroom: Communication

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