The Anchorage area elementary, middle, high school and university Japanese teachers’ association was treated to an incredible Student Engagement one-day workshop presented by Mr. Yo Azama on Saturday February 13. Mr. Azama, the 2012 ACTFL teacher of the year, expertly presented on both student engagement and student preparation for the 21st century. Mr. Azama began his presentation with ideas for fostering student engagement and developing curiosity. Thereafter he held the teachers’ attention for nearly 8 hours with methods, current language acquisition theory and tech integration. Smoothly weaving in ACTFL goals and philosophy, Azama educated the language teachers in the value of both left-brain and right-brain activities, useful apps for language acquisition, kanji teaching strategies, Danielson model pointers and the ACTFL Integrative Performance Assessment 3 skills ideas. Mr. Azama has an engaging presentation style peppered with serious academic material as well as humorous anecdotes to keep the audience riveted. Mr. Azama brought amazing professionalism and support for classroom teachers in Anchorage.
–Betsy Paskvan, Dimond High School World Languages Department Chairperson