I spent this past summer, as mentioned in my About Me section, studying French language at the Institut Français Des Alpes, or IFALPES, in Annecy, France. This program was a five-week intensive study where I spent three hours a day doing nothing but speaking and learning French alongside students from all over the world. I had students in my class from Russia, China, Brazil, Colorado (exotic, no?), Spain, even Venezuela. We all went through this process of language acquisition together, with a variety of language levels and a variety of reasons for being there.
I was fortunate to have gone there as an SLS student; this means that I have done some research, and been educated to some degree on the process of language instruction and language acquisition. Prior to my departure for Paris, and ultimately Annecy, France, I had spoken to my advisor, Priscilla Faucette, about doing a potential independent study project or 499. We decided that for this paper, I would go to IFALPES as a student of SLS, interested in what accepted methods were efficient or inefficient in my personal language acquisition process in a foreign language classroom.
In addition to my time spent in the language classroom, I was also exposed to a more natural level of speech from my home-stay family. I was placed with an amazing family outside of Annecy, in Annecy-le-vieux, which is more or less the suburb of Annecy, with whom I could freely and comfortably talk. I was fortunate enough that my host mother had a thirteen-year-old daughter who was semi-proficient in English, and could therefore understand me when I was searching for a word, and could help explain if her mom couldn't fully understand where I was going.
During this process, and all of my interactions, I spent time noting what I was doing to further my language acquisition, what worked, what didn't work, and I began to speculate as to why. During my classes, I would jot down notes in the side margins about what the teacher was doing at that point in the lesson that I found useful or what I didn't find useful. I also made notes in the journal about experiences with my host family that were useful, interesting things I encountered in the real world, maybe with shopkeepers or sales people, and what was efficient and inefficient in those situations.
Since I have been home, I have been working on this paper, and having weekly meetings with my advisor to discuss my progress. I am now in the twelfth week of developing my paper, and am well on my way to a paper that I can, and will be, very proud of. I am starting this blog entry to give you a reference to what it is that I have been working on and why it is important to me and to my academic portfolio.
I have attached below a copy of my proposal which was made before my departure to France, that can be used as a reference to my final paper to show what I was looking to get out of the paper, and what I did accomplish. When I have completed my paper you will be able to find it by clicking here.
That's all I have for now!
For the past few months I have been undergoing an application process for the Teach For America corps. I turned my application in after a month of scrutinizing every bit of information I was giving to their arduous process, and making sure I was demonstrating my merits and my skills to make myself the best candidate that I could be. When I clicked the "submit" button my heart was pounding, and I knew it was out of my hands.
About two weeks later I found out if I was going to receive a phone interview or not, and lo and behold I did! I went onto the application center on the Teach For America website, scheduled my appointment for my phone interview, made sure I would be somewhere quiet and peaceful when I had to answer the phone, and waited. When 9:30 AM came on my interview day, when I was nestled in my bed, wearing my favorite pajamas, with a copy of my resume, and every bit of information I'd ever given to Teach For America laid out in front of me, and my heart pounding in my chest, I was as nervous as I think I've ever been in my life. That was when I got my phone call. By the time the interview was done I felt a lot more at ease, and a lot more confident in my abilities and my merits to be a part of this amazing mission. That was when the waiting game began to learn if I got in to the final round.
After the waiting game was over, and finding out that I was accepted into the final interview round, and logging on to the applicant center, and scheduling my interview for Wednesday, October 16th, the waiting game began yet again. Now, being a college student in Hawaii, and prior to that a High School student in Hawaii, my whole life, I can honestly say that I don't have very many, if any, professional clothes in my wardrobe. The weeks before my interview were spent finding professional attire, which consisted of a knee-length blue dress from Old Navy, with a high collar and cap sleeves, and simple black covered shoes, and reviewing my resume and application over and over and over again, reading Teach For America's mission statements and blogs and talking to friends who are corps members to make sure I was as prepared as possible for my interview. After the interview, I waited until Halloween to hear the news, there were a few nightmares, a few anxieties, a few conversations with current corps member friends for reassurance, and ultimately, the news. I GOT ACCEPTED TO THE 2014 TEACH FOR AMERICA CORPS TEACHING ENGLISH IN HAWAII!
I am currently going through the process of figuring out what I have to do next. I know I have to register for and take two Praxis II tests (likely English and Social Studies) and go from there to figure it all out. Also I will be going to Arizona in June for five weeks for Institute, where I pretty much get to go through teacher boot camp!
That's all I've got for now in the way of my professional progress!
Welcome to my blog! This is where I am going to be documenting my journey throughout my job searching process, and the end of my years at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. To learn a little more about me, you are welcome to visit the about me page found at the navigation bar at the top of my page.
Thank you for your interest in me and my work!
Chelsea received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Hawaii at Manoa in the Department of Second Language Studies, and the Department of Language and Literatures of Europe and the Americas, studying French Language.