Presenters – STARTALK Arabic, Persian, Portuguese, Russian Teacher Training Program

Instructional Lead: Donna Clementi, Ph.D.

Topic: Content-based Instruction in a learner-centered classroom

Dr. Clementi, will present, model teaching practices, connect theories to practices by explaining the rationales behind effectiveness or ineffectiveness of certain methodologies, facilitate discussions, review online discussion board and comment, check teacher-participants’ lesson plans and provide feedback, observe afternoon and practicum sessions of the participants and provide feedback for improvement, review participants portfolio and assign grades. She will also hold regular meetings with the program directors and LGLs to discuss ways of improving participants’ learning outcomes and the effectiveness of the program.

Dr. Clementi, is a national consultant specializing in best practices in world language curriculum, instruction, and assessment. She is currently working on a team to support ACTFL’s Literacy and Languages Collaborative Center. In 2013, she co-authored The Keys to Planning for Learning: Effective Curriculum, Unit, and Lesson Design, an ACTFL publication. She taught French and was the World Languages Program Leader in the Appleton Area School District for 33 years. She also spent 38 summers working at Concordia Language Villages at the French Language Village and leading professional development seminars for world language instructors. In that capacity, Clementi taught a graduate course in World Language Methods for teachers of Arabic, Chinese, and Russian. She continues to lead ongoing professional development for teachers of Arabic, a collaborative program between the Qatar Foundation International and Concordia Language Villages.

Alfaro staff image

Guest Presenter: Cristina Alfaro, Ph.D.

Topic: Steps for Teacher Credentialing

Cristina Alfaro, Ph.D. is Professor and Chair of the Dual Language and English Learner Education Department in the College of Education at San Diego State University. Dr. Alfaro leads the largest bilingual teacher credential program in the state of California. Additionally, she is the director of a Binational Teacher Education Project (Mexico/California) that addresses the teacher preparation demands of the “Students We Share” on both sides of the border. She has over two decades of experience in directing both local and international bilingual teacher education programs in California, Mexico, and Europe. Dr. Alfaro is also the director of the Center for Equity in Biliteracy Education Research (CEBER) where she collaboratively and consultatively works with district, county and school partners and researchers to support equity and access to quality multicultural and multilingual education in state, national, binational, and international contexts.

Dr. Alfaro is the recipient of the San Diego County Office of Education Biliteracy Leadership Award, College of Education Excellence in Teaching Award, and the Association for Hispanics in Higher Education Outstanding Latina in Higher Education Award. Her background as a biliteracy teacher, school administrator, professor, and Department Chair have served her well in providing initial preparation and professional development for school principals, teachers, families, and communities in developing and implementing Dual Language Education Programs with access and equity at the core of working with, through, and around socio-political contexts. She also serves on the board of directors for the California Association for Bilingual Educators (CABE) as Director of Secondary and Institutions of Higher Education Affairs.

As a researcher she has examined and published on the role of teachers’ pedagogical and ideological clarity related to teaching practices for bilingual learners--with a call to situate equity in Dual Language Education within broader efforts to disrupt the racialization of Latinx and other minoritized communities. Her publications have been featured in a variety of peer-reviewed journals and edited books.

Point of Contact

Shahnaz Ahmadeian, STARTALK Program Director
Phone: 619-594-0846

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