• Instructional Practices

    The Six Core Practices of Proficiency-Based Learning for World Languages

    The Six Core Practices are highly effective and research-based teaching methods designed specifically for the world language classroom. The six core practices provide clear guidance for classroom instruction in achieving a shift towards a proficiency model and focus on teacher actions. Teaching for proficiency requires a change to the core of world language teaching and learning and provides guidance for student language acquisition.  

    Unlike “Best Practices” which defines “what works” based on experience, the six core practices are complex instructional practices that fully support student learning. They are not transparent or learnable through modeling alone and need to be rehearsed and coached in the specific context. Teachers must detail, deconstruct and explicitly teach and assess the core practices.  

      1. Facilitate Target Language Comprehensibility – Students and teachers speak, listen, read, write, view and create in the target language 90 percent or more during classroom time: comprehensible input, context and interactions
      2. Design Oral Interpersonal Communication Activities and Tasks – Teachers design and carry out interpersonal communication tasks for pairs, small groups and whole class instruction.
      3. Teach Grammar as Concept and Use in Context – Teachers teach grammar in providing multiple opportunities for students to acquire and use the concept in context. Students focus on meaning before form.
      4. Guide Learners through Interpreting Authentic and Cultural Resources – Present interactive reading and listening comprehension task using authentic cultural texts with appropriate scaffolding while promoting interpretation.
      5. Plan with Backward Design Model – Instructors identify desired results, then determine acceptable evidence, and then plan learning experiences and instruction.
      6. Provide Appropriate Oral Feedback – Oral corrective feedback in speech or writing elicits output beyond a simple 'yes' or 'no' response.  

    Adapted from:  American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages ACTFL “Building Your Core:  Effective Practices for Language Learners and Educators”

Last Modified on January 16, 2019