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    Place-Based and Task-Based Spanish Language and Learning

    by  • April 19, 2018 • 2017-2018 Provost Digital Innovation Grant Winners, PDIG17-18, Provost's Digital Innovation Grants

    Project Name: Place-Based and Task-Based Spanish Language and Learning

    Grantee: Inés Vañó García

    Discipline: Spanish Linguistics

    Funding Cycle: 2017-2018

    Project Status:

    White Paper: White Paper_ VanoGarcia



    About the Project



    This project will develop a pedagogical practice carried out by a Spanish Heritage Language class at Lehman College that enables Spanish Heritage Language Learners (HLL) to become producers of teaching and learning materials for second-language (L2) Spanish learners. Since language courses are a requirement for college students, and HLL already speak and understand their heritage language, these courses build on the language skills they already possess, and focus on literacy.


    As a starting point, HLL will conduct research in “El Barrio” (Spanish Harlem), where they will discover, explore, and map out different places in the area where Spanish is spoken, and present diverse material to Spanish-language learners, facilitating relevant connections within diverse communities outside the classroom setting. Following place-based and task-based methodologies, students will work in small groups to select several locations, design the content they want to include in their lesson, and explore different ways for the most effective delivery and presentation. Since much of their work will rely on video recordings, they will be trained in recording techniques, tips for interviewing, as well as introductory video editing and production skills, all of which will contribute to their overall digital literacy that they will be able to continue using in other coursework and throughout their careers. In the context of a de-centered classroom perspective, these methodologies promote HLL communicative competencies, as well as cultural, social, and political awareness on a local scale. This project stresses the development of student agency in the process of establishing connections between language and sociopolitical issues.


    The material gathered from this project will be made available as an Open Education Resource through CUNY Academic Commons, a public access platform, so that students and teachers on other CUNY campuses can build on this work.