The Digital Polyglot

A publication of the Inland Empire World Language Association since 1985

February, 2013


  • Friendship Activity for Valentine's Day
  • Valentine Sudoku
  • Virtual Valentine Cards
  • Romantic Songs
  • Plaisi d'amour
  • Tech Corner
  • Calendar of Language Events
  • Honors Reception for your Students
  • IEFLA Survey
  • Latin Education and Advocacy Days at CSUSB
  • CLTA Conference 2013, Pre-registration deadlineextended to Feb. 15
  • Latino Role Model and Success
  • Volunteer Opportunities for High School Students
  • Number Review
  • Bingo!
  • Video Resources for Teachers
  • Dear Poly
  • Police Report
  • Struggles with "Ne" and "Pas"



A Friendship Activity for Valentine’s Day

I give each student 10 peel off address labels.  They come 30 to a sheet.  I project a list of the names of students in the class on the screen. 

On each label, each student writes the name of a student and a compliment in the target language for the 10 students whose names follow his on the list.  You can even include your name in the list. Then they write a compliment for each person and sign their name.  I have on the board phrases in the target language that they can use.  “I like you because…”  “You have pretty hair.”  “I like your eyes.”  “I admire you because…”

When the students have finished writing the compliments on the labels, they go to each person on their list, read the compliment, and then they stick the label on the student’s sleeve or back.

After they have all of the compliments distributed, I give each a colorful piece of paper where they can permanently stick their compliments. Some of the papers are pink and have Valentine designs on them and some are other colors and have other designs.  The students who do Valentine’s Day usually will choose the Valentine design.  Those who don’t do Valentine’s Day can choose another design.  It’s a friendship activity and all students can participate.  The paper is three hole punched so that they can keep it in their binders. They love this activity and keep the papers for the whole year.

Lewie Johnson

Valentine Sudoku

You can find Valentine Sudokus for Spanish, French, German, and English on the IEFLA web site. Go to and download the Sudokus.

Virtual Cards

Have students send you a virtual Valentine card. 



Romantic Songs

You can teach students any number of romantic songs. Be sure to preview songs to make sure they are appropriate for your students. Search YouTube for other versions of these.


Plaisir d'amour

Here is a Valentine's Day activity for French classe, the traditional song "Plaisir d'amour" (1780 - based on a poem by Jean de Florian). Students might know the music since it was done by Elvis. There are innumerable versions in French & English, many can be found on Youtube.    (

  • Plaisir d'amour ne dure qu'un moment. Chagrin d'amour dure toute la vie.
  • J'ai tout quitté pour l'ingrate Sylvie. Elle me quitte et prend un autre amant.
  • Plaisir d'amour ne dure qu'un moment. Chagrin d'amour dure toute la vie.
  • Tant que cette eau coulera doucement vers ce ruisseau qui borde la prairie,
  • Je t'aimerai me répétait Sylvie. L'eau coule encore. Elle a changé pourtant.
  • Plaisir d'amour ne dure qu'un moment. Chagrin d'amour dure toute la vie. 

Also, you might like "Le lac" by Lamartine.  

Tech Corner 

Each month we will explore a different aspect of technology that can help you in your classroom.  This month:  Pinterest

Pinterest isn’t just for cool DIY projects, recipes and pictures of Ryan Gosling.  It’s also a great tool to organize pictures and worksheets you see on the Internet or what others find out there on the Internet.  Share boards amongst colleagues.

How to use Pinterest:

  1. Go to Pinterest.
  2. Create a your free account.
  3. Create a board to which you “pin” pictures.
  4. Start pinning!  You can browse the images already “pinned” by other users.  Search for your language and see what is already out there.  You can also pin pictures and videos you find on the Internet.
  5. Alert your friends that you may need a Pinterest intervention because it’s addictive!




IEFLA Calendar of Language Events

Cal State, San Bernardino
February 1, IEFLA Now accepting nominations for IEFLA/CASLA Honors Reception. Nominate your top five students online. Participation is limited. Nominate early.

CLTA Conference, Orange County Hyatt Regency
February 15 - CLTA Conference Pre-registration Deadline (extended). 25 pre-conference workshops on Thursday, March 1 and Friday, March 2. 100 conference interest sessions on Saturday and Sunday, March 3 and 4. For information and registration go to

Summer Teach English in China
February 25, Deadline for applications for Summer Teach English in China. Teach English for 12 days and receive airfare, hotels, meals, transporation, and tours of five cities. Non-profit organization to promote intercultural understanding. For information and applications go to

CLTA Conference, Orange County Hyatt Regency
February 28 - March 3, CLTA Conference Pre-registration Deadline. 25 pre-conference workshops on Thursday, March 1 and Friday, March 2. 100 conference interest sessions on Saturday and Sunday, March 3 and 4. For information and registration go to

Henderson, Nevada
March 4 - Registration deadline for SWCOLT Conference, April 4-6, Presenters from the 8 southwest states plus national presenters.For information and registration, go to

Cal State, San Bernardino
March 16, Deadline to nominate students for IEFLA/CASLA Honors Reception. Nominate your top five students online. Participation is limited. Nominate early.

Cal State, San Bernardino
March 27, Cal State, San Bernardino will be hosting the Latino Education and Advocacy Days from 8:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Visit LEAD webpage for all of the information. Featuring "Dora, the Explorer," Julian Castro, Mayor of San Antonio, Texas, Rep. Raul Ruiz, U.S. House of Representatives, and many more.


Honors Reception

On Wednesday, April 24, 2013, IEFLA and the Cal State San Bernardino Center for the Advancement of Second Language Acquisition will be sponsoring an Honors Reception to recognize outstanding foreign language students.  The reception will be at 5:00 p.m. at California State University, San Bernardino.

IEFLA members are invited to submit the names of students of any level whose world language achievement they would like recognized at the Honors Reception.  No more than five students may be nominated per IEFLA member. 

Nomination deadline: March 16, 2013.

You can mail in a paper nomination form or now you can submit your nominations online! Submit your nominations here.


Please take the IEFLA Survey.

What can IEFLA do to make your job easier and more effectiver? IEFLA is eager to get your feedback.

Click here to take the IEFLA Survey. There are only 11 questions and it will take about 2 minutes.

Latino Education and Advocacy Days

Visit LEAD webpage for all of the information. There is a free podcast available to learn about the annual Latino Education and Advocacy Days Summit planned for Wednesday, March 27, 2013.
- Information on Conference Topics, Featured Speakers and Sessions
- How to Become a Sponsor/Donor and Support LEAD
- How to Volunteer
- How to Become an Exhibitor
- How to Watch the Global Webcast via Internet and Participate via the Live Chat Room
- How to Listen via NBC Talk Radio or Watch via Time Warner public channels
- How to Plan your Town Hall Viewing Event
- How to Obtain Optional Course Credit, and more...
Link to podcast on-demand


CLTA Conference 2013

Hyatt Regency Orange County

February 28, 2013 - March 3, 2013

Register now for the 2013 CLTA Conference!

Pre-registration deadline is January 31, 2013. February 15, 2013

    CLTA is pleased to announce the registration form is now online for the 2013 CLTA Conference in Orange County.
    We are proud to host our members at the Hyatt Regency Orange County. Follow the link and register for your room, now!

For conference information and registration go to

Latino Role Model and Success

"Latino Role Model and Success" podcast series: Armando F. Sanchez, Executive Producer and Host

Volunteer Opportunities for High School Students

Outreach360 is looking for 20 high school teams to join us for end-of-school-year and summer volunteer opportunities.   Would you be willing to make a difference by putting together one of those 20 teams?

Outreach360 is a leader in international service-learning opportunities.  Over 14,000 volunteers have joined us in the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua since our program began in 1994.  Many of those volunteers have been high school students.

For more information go to


Number Review

Use any dot to dot coloring page you find on the Internet or in your child’s coloring book.  Make a copy of it, then, white out the numbers and rewrite them in a completely random fashion.  You can even add in letters too.  Then on a separate sheet write the “key.”  Give the “key” to one student and the dot to dot to another.  The student with the key has to tell the other student which number to link up next. 

Use a number by number coloring page to review colors.  Write a “key” on the board.

If you teach French, you may want to use a lot of numbers between 80 and 100.

If you make one, send it to us to post on the IEFLA web site to share with others.


Who doesn’t love a good game of Bingo!  Use this bingo card maker to generate your next game.  or

Video Resources for Spanish Teachers

There are really nicely done videos for Spanish teachers that can be found here:
These are produced by VideoEle - based in Spain - Español como Lengua Extranjera.  Most videos are between 3 and 6 min long and address a multitude of topics that we do.  Almost all these videos are posted on Youtube too.  In addition, if you scroll down a bit further, there is a link to the pdf transcriptions of the videos.  This saved me a TON of time when wanting to make a worksheet for the kids to do while listening. For the Feliz Navidad video, I also found drag/drop activities with the vocabulary that can be done on a smartboard or promethean.
Hope you find this helpful. from Karen Sanchez via FLTeach

Dear Poly
Every month Poly responds to your questions.

Dear Poly,

My school is now requiring that we design our lessons to align with the California Content Standards for World Languages.  But I just realized that what we’ve been using are not California Standards but the National Standards for Foreign Language Education the 5 C’s: Communication, Comparisons, Communities, Cultures, Connections.  Why don’t we have content standards for world languages in California?

Perplexed in Palm Desert


Dear Perplexed,

California does have World Language Content Standards, but it has been one of the best kept secrets of modern times.  You can download a copy of the content standards from the California Department of Education web site or from the IEFLA web site  And if you’d like to get training on designing standards-aligned lessons, you can attend the IE STARS training.  The next series will be in the fall.

Wishing you the best,


Do you have a question for Poly?  Submit your question by filling in the form here.


Police Report: Preterite/Imperfect, Passé Composé/Imparfait

I just completed this activity with my classes that are beginning the study of preterite vs imperfect or passé composé vs. imparfait.
While doing their 'boring' warm up on the board, I had a 'mystery teacher' surprisingly run in my room with a mask and wig on and carrying a teletubbie umbrella, stealing the purse off my desk.  I pretended I didn't know what was going on...yelled at her and chased her out the door :)  Then I came back in and continued my pretending telling the kids they needed to fill out police reports, and that the board warm up didn't matter anymore.  I got the police report template from someone I don't remember who exactly!  It serves as a great activity when students are just beginning to understand the differences. 

-Amber Sullivan – FL Teach

Struggles with "Ne" and "Pas"

I made up the story because my students would often forget to add "pas" after the verb.  So I told them that "ne"and "pas" were girlfriend and boyfriend (I drew little characters on the board).  The were so in love and were never apart unless they were at work.  They lived in a beautiful forest but would leave in order to go to work. Where did they work?  Well, in a sentence, of course!!  "Ne" would stand on the left side of the verb and "pas" would stand on the right side of the verb.  The ONLY thing that could separate "ne" from "pas" was the VERB.

But guess what?  "Ne" is a bit of a "player" because he also hangs out with "rien" and "jamais" and.....etc.  The kids love this story!  And they never forget....what a soap opera!

Bunny Rubenstein
Christian Brothers High School

Grammar Lecture Videos

Steve Funk, Spanish teacher at Redlands East Valley High School, has recorded a number of lectures on grammar points such as acabar de, conocer vs. saber, command forms, preterite, and others. There are available on his blog spot. You can see them here:

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The Polyglot is a publication of the Inland Empire Foreign Language Association. For questions or comments, contact Bethany Thompson, editor, or Trini Avalos, Trini Avalos, Would you like to help with the Polyglot? Contact Bethany Thompson, editor, at