Dreaming in Languages. Politics, Pedagogy, and Technology for Language Instruction

The symposium “Dreaming in Languages” was a success; thank you to all of you!

Almost forty attendees received the extraordinary key note speech by Dr. Ana Celia Zentella and participated in the excellent workshops by Dr. Fernando Rubio and Dr. Flavia Laviosa. It was a great day celebrating education, foreign languages and other cultures’ awareness. A group of our students worked hard as Students Ambassadors helping us and making the day a smooth achievement.

Early morning, Dr. Ana Celia Zentella interested the attendees on the connection between language and power and the responsibility we have as language teachers. Her talk was full of references to media and real live situations.

This is the list of references she used in her talk.

Dr. Zentella talking

After her, Dr. Fernando Rubio showed the effectiveness and convenience of technology in today’s language teaching and learning. He used the real resources and tools to involve the attendees in the workshop and presented the possibilities they open.

The video with the entire Dr. Rubio’s presentation will be posted in this page soon.

Dr. Rubio presenting

This is the complete video of Dr. Rubio's talk:

An this is the discussion that followed:

After lunch, Dr. Flavia Laviosa conducted a workshop displaying examples of how kinetic activities can be used in the classroom to engage the students and make easier for them to break the ice and actually start talking the target language.

Dr. Laviosa presenting

PowerPoint presentation by Dr. Flavia Laviosa (video file)

Thank you so much to presenters, attendees, Students Ambassadors and everybody in Fredonia involved in this wonderful event. We must say a special thank you to SUNY Innovative Instruction Technology Grants who funded the symposium and to Dean John Kijinski for his funding support and his opening words for the occasion.


The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures is organizing a symposium on the politics, the pedagogy and the technology involved in language learning.

Funded by a SUNY Innovative Instruction Technology Grant, Fredonia will host on March 16th 2013 a one day symposium meant for instructors involved in teaching languages at any level. It will comprise three sessions, one on the political climate around language teaching (by Dr. Ana Celia Zentella) , another on technological innovations and applications for language instruction (by Dr. Fernando Rubio) and an afternoon session on current theories on language acquisition and pedagogical approaches (by Dr. Flavia Laviosa). After the symposium a website will be created for teachers to share curriculum innovations and the materials of the Symposium will be posted. Not just Fredonia faculty and students but everybody in the area involved in teaching languages will be invited and it is welcome!

This is the link to register for the event: https://secure.touchnet.com/C21465_ustores/web/store_main.jsp?STOREID=124&SINGLESTORE=true


poster dreaming in languages

If you have any questions, please contact Chiara De Santi (desanti@fredonia.edu) or Juan De Urda (deurda@fredonia.edu).


Bios of Speakers

Dr. Ana Celia Zentella

Ana Celia Zentella is one of the foremost researchers in what she has named “anthro-political linguistics”. She is a central figure in the study of U.S. Latin@ varieties of Spanish and English, Spanglish, and language socialization in Latin@ families, and a respected critic of the linguistic profiling facilitated by English-only laws and anti- bilingual education legislation. Her book, Growing up Bilingual: Puerto Rican children in New York (Blackwell, 1997) won the Book Prize of the British Association of Applied Linguistics, and the Book Award of the Association of Latina and Latino Anthropologists of the American Anthropology Association. Her edited collection, Building on Strength: Language and Literacy in Latino Families and Communities (Columbia TC Press, 2005), is a popular text in the USA and Europe. Most recently, Zentella has written two books with undergraduates, one at UCSD (Multilingual San Diego: Portraits of Language Loss and Revitalization, 2008, and the other at Swarthmore College (Multilingual Philadelphia: Portraits of Language and Social Change, 2010). A major sociolinguistic study, Spanish in New York:  Language Contact, Dialectal Leveling, and Structural Continuity (Oxford University Press, 2011, was co-authored with Ricardo Otheguy.

Current projects include a study of the remapping of language, identity, and the border by college students who live in Tijuana and study in San Diego (transfronterizos), a sociolinguistic ethnography of a US high school on the Tijuana border, and research on Puerto Rican assimilation to Mexican Spanish in California.

Manhattan's Borough President Ruth Messinger declared October 30, 1997 "Doctor Ana Celia Zentella Day", for "her leading role in building appreciation for language diversity and respect for language rights". Zentella presently chairs the Task Force on Language and Social Justice (AAA).



Dr. Flavia Laviosa is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Italian Studies and in the Cinema and Media Studies Program at Wellesley College. Her primary expertise is in Foreign Language Education. Her teaching methodology is inspired to the Multiple Intelligences Theory. In her teaching she implements inclusive learning of all cognitive styles and needs. She is also a certified ACTFL OPI trainer and tester and has extensive experience as teacher trainer. Her principal area of research is Italian cinema and she has published extensively on several contemporary filmmakers. She has edited the volume Visions of Struggle in Women’s Filmmaking in the Mediterranean (Palgrave Macmillan 2010) and she is the founder and editor of the Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies, published by Intellect.


Fernando Rubio received his PhD in Spanish Linguistics from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He currently teaches Spanish Linguistics at the University of Utah, where he is also Co-Director of the Second Language Teaching and Research Center. A certified OPI tester in Spanish, his research interests are in the areas of Applied Linguistics and Teaching Methodologies.

In 2009 he was awarded the Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) Exemplary Faculty Use of Technology Award and in 2012 he received the ACTFL Award for Excellence in Foreign Language Instruction Using Technology. He has given talks, keynotes and workshops on language and technology all over the country and has taught online and hybrid language courses for years, including the first foreign language MOOC ever taught.

He is the author of two textbooks, Tercer Milenio, Kendall-Hunt, 2009, and Juntos, Cengage (forthcoming) and editor of Hybrid Language Teaching and Learning: Exploring Theoretical, Pedagogical and Curricular Issues, Heinle, 2012.



Page modified 4/24/13