Assessment Capable Learning for the 21st Century -Save the Date!

Join the Maine Department of Education as we explore knowledge, skills, and dispositions that are necessary for 21st century careers and the intentional actions of educators to support students developing the skill and will to fuel their learning. Participants will delve into the principles of assessment capable learning as they examine strategies for building units of instruction that integrate multiple content areas. Sessions will be led by teams of the Department’s content specialists. Units will integrate combinations of world language, social studies, visual and performing arts, science, English language arts, health education and physical education, and mathematics. Units will also incorporate strategies for technology integration and family engagement.

School districts are encouraged to bring teams of three or more people. We will gather as teams at the beginning of the day for a panel and some discussion. Then, each team member will attend a different breakout session where they will experience integrated lessons and units incorporating the principles of assessment capable learners. Finally, at the end of the day, teams will reconvene to share, process, and apply what they experienced in the breakout sessions. Teams may include educators, administrators, instructional coaches, and special education instructors.  Schools are encouraged to include representation from multiple grade levels and all content areas when forming their teams.


Elementary (Pk-5):

July 9th at the Ramada in Lewiston

July 24th at Jeff’s Catering in Brewer

Secondary (6-12):

July 10th at the Ramada in Lewiston

July 25th at Jeff’s Catering in Brewer


$130/ team of 3 or $50/ person; lunch provided. Individual registrations are accepted but teams are preferred.

More details about this opportunity and the registration will be provided after April school vacation week.

For more information please contact Lee Anne Larsen, or Beth Lambert,

Maine DOE World Language Specialist Available for Program Support

The Maine Department of Education’s World Language Specialist, Lavinia Rogers is available to talk with and support districts interested in creating a plan to realize world language programs for all students, especially those districts who may be experiencing a teacher shortage in that area.

More information and resources about world languages can be found on the Maine DOE’s website, or feel free to contact Lavinia directly to request a meeting or ask questions. She is available at or (207)624-6825


New survey for identifying English learners

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) has developed a new survey called, Language Use Survey (formerly Home Language Survey) to be used in the identification of English learners. The Language Use Survey is to be administered to the parent/guardian of every student enrolling in a School Administrative Unit (SAU) for the first time and must be included in the SAU’s enrollment packet.

The Language Use Survey is available to download in English and 25 of Maine’s most commonly spoken languages from the Department website. It is also available via TransACT, a service provided through the Maine DOE to give districts access to ESSA-compliant parent notifications in English and other languages.

If you have additional questions regarding the Language Use Survey, please contact April Perkins, ESOL Specialist at or office: (207)624-6627 cell: (207) 441-9043.

Creating a discourse community in the world language classroom

For students to have adequate opportunity to acquire language and develop proficiency in a language other than English, maximum use of the target language in the classroom by teachers and students is critical. While the research-based recommendation is that target language use represents 90% of teacher and student discourse in the classroom, many teachers struggle to maximize the use of L2 (world language that the student is working to learn during instruction).

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The why and how of thematic units in the world language classroom

The December 2015 article on the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do statements guided world language educators on using the resource for identifying learning targets relative to proficiency level. This article builds off of that idea, and it looks closer at thematic units in order to understand why and how they best empower educators to teach to language proficiency.

Continue reading “The why and how of thematic units in the world language classroom”