Teaching Language and Social Justice - A New Book by Concordia Authors | Concordia Language Villages

Teaching Language and Social Justice - A New Book by Concordia Authors

November 18, 2015

Words and Actions: Teaching Languages Through the Lens of Social Justice, a new book co-authored by Cassandra Glynn (Concordia College), Pamela Wesely (University of Iowa), and Beth Wassell (Rowan University), will be released at this year’s ACTFL Convention and World Languages Expo in San Antonio, Texas.  Glynn and Wesely, both veteran Language Villages staff and villagers, want the book to encourage dialogue about the role of social justice in the language classroom. 

“I first learned how to be a language teacher at the Language Villages,” says Wesely, “where there is always such a strong emphasis on creating global citizens out of language learners – this could be seen in everything from the cultural simulations, to the environmental focus of many activities, to the importance of politics and social causes fundamental to small and large interactions throughout the Villages.” 

Words and Actions is more than a theoretical treatise on language education, however, featuring detailed and concrete suggestions for integrating social justice and the language classroom with curricular design, lesson plans, and self-assessment. Cassandra Glynn, who directs the Concordia College Master of World Language Instruction program argues that “social justice education is a natural and necessary component of world language teaching.” 

The co-authors contend that, given that most language classrooms today are more culturally diverse than the classrooms of previous generations, teachers can use this book to more effectively reach their students and create dynamic, transformative learning communities.