How does a shift toward proficiency change a world language class?

This workshop shows teachers the big picture of proficiency growth and how it impacts their teaching and curriculum. It gives tips, ideas, and activities to support student proficiency growth in parts of the lesson (warm-up, daily objectives, vocab, reading/speaking/listening activities, games, and assessments) that will get students engaged and communicating more.

Here is a collection of slides and links related to our workshop “Big Picture.” The slides may be slightly different than what you saw since every workshop is tailored to the school/organization. Email us if you have any questions and include where you attended the workshop.

Assessing for Proficiency: Grades

After proficiency, growth and feedback was the focus.

What do we teach?

Instead of teaching about the language, we spend more time teaching in the target language about relevant, highly engaging themes.

Is your unit communicative? Would REAL people sit on a park bench and talk about it?

What do they learn?

They grow skills like giving opinions, describing, asking and answering questions (and more) and improve these skills throughout the program.


It Changes every Part of the Lesson

Click the topics below to see examples and get the links.

Read More: Plan it out!

Read More: Rethinking Curriculum

Examples of Syllabi

Class Starters

Now to start with a spark! Give them something to talk about.

Read “Open It Up” for more

Read “Predict the Future” for more

Read Aspects of Culture Post for more.

Chinese lesson with Aspects of Culture

Or copy and paste this image to your own program. Add text boxes.

Editable Blank Aspects of Culture –>

Read “YouTube – Why it should be part of EVERY lesson!” for videos and examples of each of the previous tasks plus tips for searching on YouTube.

Input / Interpretive

Mining VOCABULARY from Authentic Resources


Read more: Let AuthRes Take the Lead (3 posts)

Vocabulary Lists

Vocabulary lists became a product of reading (or listening) and made by students.

First let them find the important information so later they can complete a communicative task.

Read more: Teaching Vocabulary to Grow Proficiency

Read more: Vocabulary Lists (Not Created by the Teacher)

Read more: What’s the Function? (vocab)

See Examples and Download Forms:

 “30+ Reading Activities” “3 Quick and Easy Reading Forms”  “Highlight Away” 



Communication is key when practicing.

Agree or Disagree?

Read Ask, Ask, Switch post for more information.

Pick famous people from your target culture. Read Akinator Knows All for more.

Flyswatter All in the TL

Ordering & Negotiating Activities

Formative Assessments / Learning Checks

Assessing Progress in Formative Assessments

Read More: Formative Assessments

Exit Slip? Check! for more self-assessment ideas

More details here – Refinement through Reflections


Extending the learning beyond the classroom! Getting all the 5 Cs in…

Read “Real World Homework” to see different ways to implement it.

Summative Assessments (end of unit/course)

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Do you want a proficiency-based curriculum now?

Save precious planning time! Check out our curriculum site to unify your department.