Explanation on This is Language (TIL):
Reading Comprehension and Interpretive Listening Connections
This is Language is a resource that the county pays for for foreign language students. Each school is given an allotted number of TIL accounts that they then create for students. I’ve attached information from the TIL website about the ACTFL World-Readiness Standards, Authentic Resources, and Exercises on TIL, but I would like to provide insight on how I use TIL and relate it to reading comprehension.
While reading is important, Spanish is a language. When thinking about real world application, language is conversational, used mostly with speaking and listening. As a Spanish 2 PLC, we have decided for the 2016-2017 school year to focus on interpretive listening the most. In order to build up to strong listening skills, I have students read first. For example, this unit is on daily routines. So students read independently with easier readings, like numbers 5 and 6 in the text set. For more difficult readings, like 1-4, the readings are done and presented in different ways. Some readings are done independently. However, even independent readings usually end up being done together and out loud, whether teacher or student read. This way, students are comfortable with pronunciation. Reading builds a stepping stone for interpretive listening and communicative speaking. While the TIL videos are for the most part assessing the listening skills of students, they have been closely paired to reading assessments given beforehand either in class or as homework.
This Is Language videos can be done digitally on Chromebooks or on paper. For the following sections of my text set, 7-9, I have attached the physical copy of TIL assignments. The paper copies include a transcript, a vocabulary chart and reading comprehension questions. While these assignments alone could be used to asses reading comprehension, it is very important to connect the interpretive listening assessment into the class. When students do the online assignments, they do not have access to the transcripts, because that changes the focus from listening to reading. However, gap fill assignments on TIL are similar to Cloze exercises where students must replace the missing word. However, with TIL videos, students are reading along with what the speaker is saying and filling in the gaps as they hear them.
Welcome to the foreign language classroom!