Oklahoma Foreign Language Teachers' association
I started my language learning journey in high school and it took me all the way to one of the best jobs I could ever ask for. Stops along the way include Chile (See attached image of long-haired college me), México with my future wife to see her family, and hopefully many more adventures to come. My goal as a teacher is to take these amazing things I’ve learned and use them to give my students the same opportunities I had.
While I am only on my second year of teaching, I have been surrounded for years with great influences in language education. It began as a student in Spanish I at Westmoore High School where I now teach Spanish III & V Literature. My favorite part about being a teacher is the constant interaction with my students and as a language teacher the opportunities for connecting with students in a meaningful way are endless. I learned about teaching language as a student at Oklahoma State University, but I started to dial in my lessons and strategies at OFLTA conferences. There is not a better place for language teachers to share and expand on their ideas than at these conferences.
Although there are many aspects to acquiring a language, I believe that culture and language are two things that cannot be separated. My presentation is a short example of how I teach about the culture of a given country while staying in the target language. Sometimes as language teachers we can view culture and language as two different kinds of lessons. If we use comprehensible input as well as the other amazing strategies shared at OFLTA conferences, there is no reason we should ever have to separate the two.
Westmoore High School
Moore Public Schools
OFLTA Spotlight: Chandler Dawson voted Oklahoma's "Best of"
At OFLTA's annual fall conference on September 22nd, we announced our TOY for the 2018-2019. We are honored to have Deanna Roach represent world language education in Oklahoma. Deanna is in her 27th year of teaching and currently teaches Spanish at Norman North High School. Prior to that, she served as World Languages Curriculum Coordinator for Oklahoma City Public Schools. She has been a National Board Certified Teacher since 2006 and was named Deer Creek High School's Teacher of the Year in 2009. Deanna has presented at both local and regional conferences. Her session on Comprehensible Input was selected Best of Oklahoma at fall OFLTA Conference in 2016. She was the previous Secretary and Treasurer for OFLTA and also served on a state committee to write the Oklahoma Academic Standards for World Languages.
"I am so grateful to have had the privilege all these years to see students use what they have learned in my class to make a difference in their realm of influence. Nothing is more fulfilling than seeing my students grow up to become world changers, all because they learned to connect with others in another language. One of my former students is in law school to become an immigration attorney. Another works for a British law firm in New York City and is the attorney for a Spanish shipping company. Another is in Washington, D.C. working for the Department of State. More than I can count have gone on to double major or minor in Spanish in college or have used Spanish on missions trips with their churches. Doctors able to communicate with Spanish-speaking patients. Teachers able to communicate with parents of their students. Politicians with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the unique cultures in our Spanish-speaking communities. Business owners who can better serve their Spanish-speaking customers and communicate with their Spanish-speaking employees. What I do each day matters beyond my classroom and beyond even my students' lives. What an incredible calling!"
Deanna Roach, M.Ed., NBCT
Norman Public Schools
OFLTA's Teacher of the Year 2018-2019 : Deanna Roach M.Ed., NBCT