Dear CT COLT Members,
It’s summer, we made it! I hope that as you read this, you are having a peaceful and healthy break. For me, this time of year is one of deep reflection, where I look back, check in on how I’m doing, and then start to mentally plan for the upcoming school year.
When I think back to the school year that has just wrapped up, I am grateful for the resiliency of my students, my responsive school and district leadership, the teamwork of the CT COLT Board and members, and the support of my colleagues, family, and friends. I am proud to be a part of this incredibly flexible, diligent, creative, and giving profession. I cannot believe how much I evolved this past year. In particular, my colleagues and I zoomed forward in our use of technology and social emotional learning strategies, which were critical for learning and connection. It was surprising that serenity appeared when slowing down and thinking about my priorities in a fresh light.
Although I am feeling an atypical sense of calm, I am finding that I am experiencing a variety of emotions as I settle into July.
- First and foremost, I feel sadness as I reflect on the loss and division in our nation during the past year and a half.
- I am grateful for the incredible work of our CT COLT Board of Directors. During our annual Summer Retreat, we looked back on all of our successes during the 2020-2021 academic year and also outlined areas of continued growth for the coming year.
- I feel relief that the hardest school year I can remember has ended, and I am experiencing enormous fatigue while recovering from the emotional and physical demands of teaching during this time of uncertainty.
- I am delighted! I am doing so many things that I had taken for granted, such as eating in restaurants, seeing smiles on my friends’ faces, and hugging those close to me.
I feel hope, as I look forward to the 2021-2022 academic year, one that will bring back more in-person connections. I am looking ahead with a fresh perspective. This past year has made clear the work that needs to be done, and I will also embed my learning from the COLT Summer Proficiency Institute into my practice. This summer is also one for binge-watching television and reading all the books. While I am leaving room for some fiction novels, I am continuing to deepen my understanding of social justice and intercultural competence, tackling the below ACTFL publications so that students are prepared to be agents of change in our global society.
|As described on ACTFL’s store page, this book, “…explores how language educators can advocate for and illustrate the importance of language education not only for their students’ education but also for their ability to solve complex problems we urgently need to address.”||
This revised edition shares insights for ways to incorporate social justice to the curriculum and classroom activities. I am using this text to understand the tenets of social justice education and also to see specific examples, both within lessons and units, of how to add this critical layer.
As you look back, check in, and think ahead, I would love to connect with you, on social media, via email, or perhaps at an upcoming CT COLT event such as our hybrid Fall Conference, October 21 – October 25. CT COLT as an organization has learned much this year and will continue to evolve to meet the needs of our members and the language community. For example, we are switching our typical Fall Conference mailing to a fully digital and interactive program, which we will post on our website, http://www.ctcolt.org. What hard-earned learning are you taking from the past year and a half and bringing into next school year? How has your outlook evolved? How else can CT COLT support you as you begin the 2021-2022 school year?
I wish you peace, connection, and if possible, joy this summer. You were amazing this past school year.
Amanda Robustelli-Price, President