Congratulations to NHAWLT President Janis Hennessey for receiving the Brooks Award for Outstanding Leadership in the Profession from the NECTFL




Dear Fellow NHAWLT members,

Now that we’ve finished semester 1, had a few snow days, and experienced a white winter, I’d like to give you an update on happenings with NHAWLT.  First, I’d like to thank Ursula Askins-Huber for her tireless dedication as NHAWLT president over the last two years.  Under her leadership, we had our first conference with walk-in workshops, added a social media presence to, supported Ed 306.48 (including requiring a certified or HQT teacher in each high school in the state, inclusive of online charter schools), and shared Common Core alignment on our website (ACTFL’s "Crossroads" aligns the ACTFL National Standards for World Languages with the ELA Common Core).   Visit anytime to access relevant information, check our calendar of events and follow us on Twitter or Facebook. Is your 2015 calendar filling up? Don’t forget to add our conference, November 13-14 at Mill Falls in Meredith, a beautiful fall conference site.

February brings cool weather and cool contests.  It’s time to start thinking about participating in our annual poster competition.  We have both a digital and paper option for grades K-12 and love to see the creativity of NH world language students.  While we have always listed the criteria, this year we’ll also be posting the rubrics the judges will use for you and your students.  With technology increasingly relevant to 21st century learning, please encourage your students to share their tech skills this year, or share their artistic talent on paper.  Look for the e-mail blast soon.

We occasionally have board positions open and are inviting teachers who express interest to a NHAWLT Executive Board Meeting to see if this is for you.  Please consider joining the board sometime in the future.  We are a collaborative group with different talents and languages represented.  We would love to meet new teachers interested in the board.

The NHAWLT Certificate of Excellence award is given in the spring: we’ll remind you to have student names to us by May. Many teachers select a junior for this recognition and students may list this achievement with college applications.  Speaking of student excellence, consider nominating a NH Teacher of Excellence. Nomination forms are at Excellent teachers are also excellent conference presenters, so think about sharing some of your expertise with your colleagues throughout the state, or asking a colleague if he or she would like to present.  Conference proposals are due by June.

Lastly, please remember that NHAWLT is here to support you, our world language teachers throughout the state. We are ready to listen to your thoughts on world language education in NH, and can be contacted at We also have a helpful hints section for you to check out. If you’d like to add helpful hints or events to our calendar, please send them along and we’ll share many with the NHAWLT community. Enjoy the winter, the powdery snow, and the spring semester.


Celeste M. Feren, President of NHAWLT

Dear NHAWLT Members:

As the year draws to a close, it is time for me to say good-bye to my presidential duties at NHAWLT. For those of you at the Conference luncheon this year, you may recall that at 11:59 pm on December 31, 2014, I will be turning over my duties as president to long-term NHAWLT Board member, Celeste Feren, who is eager to get her two-year term underway.

Some of my favorite memories of my time as president included meeting and getting to know more of our members than I had previously. We tried some new things, worked with the State Department of Education to improve communication about the needs of our students, advocated for World Language as an essential part of the high school curriculum in our state, and are continuing to work with the department of credentialing to streamline the Alt4 certification process.

We tried some new things at the conferences. John Connor, our keynote speaker, was very popular this year, and we have secured John DeMado as next year's speaker when we meet again in Meredith. We expanded the hours available for professional development, came up with an easier tracking system for those hours, and held the cost of the conference at the same level for the past three years. We used a new registration system this year, and realized that we had some kinks to work out, like making sure that the schedule was easy to access before entering personal information, a situation easily remedied for next year's conference. And we tried giving the conference a theme this year, which received mixed reviews according to our conference surveys.

I know that Celeste will continue to work as I did, to improve access to professional development opportunities, make real-time communication with our members a priority, and to continue to work with the Department of Education while advocating for World Language students and teachers around the state.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve you. It has been an honor, and I know that you all will make your new president feel as valued and appreciated as I did.


Ursula Askins-Huber
President (until 1/1/15!), NHAWLT

President’s Letter Summer 2013

Dear Members of NHAWLT,

At last year’s NHAWLT Conference, I was approached by several teachers who expressed concerns about being replaced by distance-learning courses. As World Language is a graduation requirement at very few of our public schools, it seems that some school boards, desperate to save money in the hard economic times, had begun eliminating teachers in the classroom.

NHAWLT has been a presence throughout the process of the development of ED 306 – the minimum standards for education in the public schools. We have worked hard to introduce language to the State Board of Education that encourages the presence of classrooms staffed by Highly Qualified Teachers. While we have worked with the committee charged with the task of “making crystal clear the expectations “ of the Department of Education, the time has come for public input.

Earlier this week, several of our board members attended the first of two public hearings about the approval of this very lengthy document. The section about World Languages (Ed 306.48) was introduced by NHAWLT and edited by the Department of Education. I personally testified to the importance of the suggestions that we made, and asked that the Department take into account our changing world and the need to prepare our students for global markets.

The next public hearing will be held on September 9th at 10 a.m. at Lincoln-Woodstock Elementary School, 72 Linwood Drive, Lincoln NH. I will again be in attendance along with other board members. If you have something that you would like to share with the Department of Education, I not only hope that you will attend this meeting, but that you will find me and introduce yourself.

If you are unable to make the trip to Lincoln, there are other opportunities for comment. You may visit the DOE at and give your input on the survey link. Public comment on general education requirements is accepted through September 16th. The proposal for Ed306.48 has not yet been made available for public comment, but if you wish to share with the state your desire to see all learning supervised by Highly Qualified Teachers, this is your chance to say so.

We will give you an update of the progress of Ed 306 at the NHAWLT Conference, October 25 – 26 at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester. Keep your eyes open for an e-mail giving you all of the details!

Good luck to all of you as you prepare for another successful school year!


Ursula Askins-Huber
President, NHAWLT

Dear Members,

As we head down the slippery slope toward the end of the year with all its pomp and circumstance, field days, final projects, etc. we are asking you to consider sharing your knowledge and skills with your peers.

We have made a few changes in the scheduling process and are now offering workshops at 45 minutes, 90 minutes, and 2 hours. If you have ever considered sharing ideas with your peers, now is the time to do it.

There is a special need for presenters who are willing to present in the target language. 

There has also been a call for presenters in the following topics:

-The 5 C’s (choose one) 
-Strategies for more oral communication activities for lower level learners 
-Modifications and accommodations for Special Education students in the world language classroom 
-Getting colleagues on board for cross-curricular collaboration 
-Creative uses of personal devices in the language classroom 
-Increasing cultural theme-based activities in the classroom 
-How to enhance community interaction with your world language classes 
-Using the web effectively for personalized student projects 
-Quick and easy transitional activities to get your students speaking the language more 
-Corporate partnerships in education 
-Creating a focused lesson plan out from teacher and student travel experiences 
-Grant writing and resources for student travel or classroom supplies

We know there are a lot of experts out there, so please join us in building a stronger World Language community in our state!

You will find the proposal form on our website,

Please submit your proposal by July 1, 2013 if you are interested in presenting at the fall conference at the Radisson in Manchester, NH October 25th and 26th.

Thank you for your consideration, and enjoy the wild ride to the end of the year!

Ursula Askins-Huber
NHAWLT President

SPAN 997: La sociolingüística de español en el mundo, en los EEUU y en Nuevo Hampshire

Sociolinguistics of Spanish in the World, the U.S. & New Hampshire    

This graduate seminar will explore Spanish language variation around the world, from Spain to Latin America to the U.S., including New Hampshire. Special attention will be paid to the issues involving bilingualism, bilingual language acquisition, bilingual education and Spanish heritage language language, which should be of particular interest to students who are or plan to become teachers of Spanish. 

The course will be taught in Spanish and all required reading will be in Spanish in order to provide students the opportunity to practice and improve (or simply use and enjoy) their Spanish-language skills. The course will meet weekly on Wednesday evenings from 6:10-9 pm at UNH's Durham campus from Aug. 28 through December 4; there will be no meeting on Nov. 27 due to the Thanksgiving holiday. The instructor, Prof. Holly R. Cashman, can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any questions or you are interested in more information.


Season’s Greetings from The NHAWLT Board,

At this time of year we reflect on all of the positives in our lives.  Of course family is always number one; but for me, my students are also a wonderful positive in my life.  As a teacher since 1975, I have lost count of how many students I have taught.  But for the most part, I fondly remember each of them for what they have accomplished and for what they have taught me along the way.  Teaching is a wonderful profession.  No two days are similar.  Each day brings something new and with that another chance to instill in our students the love of learning another language.

We, in the teaching profession, have been profoundly affected by the tragedy at Sandy Brook Elementary School.  We stand and salute and bow our heads and pray for the children and their heroic teachers who lost their lives on December 14.  I see my students in much brighter light this week and realize how much of an impact teachers can make in the lives of their students.  I applaud you all for the wonderful work that you do each and every day for all of your students.

With all of that stated, I do have a few business items that I need to share.  First and foremost, The NHAWLT Board wishes to congratulate Kara Jacobs who has been selected as The NHAWLT Best of NH for her workshop at the NHAWLT Conference.  Kara has graciously accepted to present her workshop at the annual NECTFL Conference in Baltimore on March 7-10, 2013.  Please come and support Kara at the NECTFL Conference.  We hope to see many of you there.

Willamarie Moore, Head of School Programs and Teacher Resources at The MFA, wishes to make it known to all teachers in NH that a new program - The McLane Family New Hampshire Student Membership Program allows all school groups from NH free admission to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.  Details can be found at:

Amanda M.G. Seewald from NECTFL has asked that we advertise that “The Sans Inc./Mead leadership fellows program this year represents a great opportunity to showcase the best and brightest in your state.”  If you are interested in applying for this, please send your proposal to me at the following address.  Mary Chamberlain, St. Thomas Aquinas High School, 197 Dover Point Rd, Dover, NH no later than December 31 as I will need to submit our state choice to NECTFL by January 5, 2013.  I may also be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

This is my final letter as president of NHAWLT.  It has been my pleasure to serve the teachers of NH in this capacity.  I work with a group of highly devoted educators in NH who give their time and energy to serve on The NHAWLT Board.  Some of our members have left the board and we are in need of new people to join us.  If you are a member of NHAWLT and are interested in attending our next meeting in February, please contact me and I will send you specifics about the meeting.  We need new members to keep this board running to best serve language teachers in NH.  I wish you all Season’s Greetings and a wish for a relaxing and fun-filled Christmas Vacation.  You all deserve the very best.


Mary Chamberlain

President’s Letter-December 15, 2011

It seems as though our conference was a lifetime ago!  But in reality it was last month.  Thank you to all who came and celebrated our craft of teaching. Based on the survey that many of you took the time to complete, we will be returning to Meredith next November and will then return to Manchester for a two year stay.

World Language Teachers are very special people.   We not only prepare our students to communicate through the spoken word, we also teach them the culture of the target language which prepares them to be global learners for the 21st Century.  This is such a hectic time for all of us.  We are finishing up lessons and in some cases preparing our students for Mid-term Exams.  We have visions of oral presentations dancing in our heads.

But alas, The Holidays approach.  We need to take this time to rejoice in the love of family and the friendships we share.  We need to rejuvenate our spirits for the second half of the school year.  I, along with the entire NHAWLT Board, wish you a very merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukah and a New Year full of joy and accomplishments.  May you find peace and the time to refresh just in time to begin 2012!  May this be a year of health and happiness for us all.

A special congratulations to Corey Henderson of Inter-lakes High School who was voted best of New Hampshire for his workshop on Differentiated Instruction.  Corey will represent the state of New Hampshire by presenting at the 2013 NECTFL Conference.

Joyeux Noël

Feliz Navidad

Fröliche Weihnachten

Felix Saturnalia

Happy Hanukah

Mary Chamberlain

NHAWLT President

Greetings NHAWLT Members,

We are all in the process of wrapping up the first term of 2011.  School started with a bang and has yet to let down.  Those of us in high school have once again survived Spirit Weeks, Pep Rallies and here at Saint Thomas Aquinas our first Saints for Action Community Service Event.  And of course we are all still finding time to teach and to prepare our students for what lies ahead in the 21st Century.  The more that I teach, the more I realize the importance of teaching “the whole student”.  Not only are we teaching our students how to speak another language, we are also teaching them the value of learning another culture and how to treat everyone with care and dignity.  We are building relationships that will follow our students for years to come. I am looking forward to our annual NHAWLT Conference on November 4-5 at the Inns & Spa at Mill Falls in Meredith, N.H.  This is always a time of renewal for me.  I connect with people I often see but once a year.  I have the chance to attend presentations from esteemed colleagues.  I learn new things that I can bring back to my classes.  I step out of my tiny universe and get in touch with all of the wonderful initiatives happening throughout the state of N.H.  This year, for the first time, we will have several teachers from Vermont attending our conference which will offer another view on what is happening in another state.  Teachers seldom have the chance to pamper themselves. The Inn and Spa at Mill Falls is a wonderful place to come and enjoy our time with colleagues.  I look forward to speaking to as many of you as possible.  This is my first conference as President of NHAWLT and I hope to make it a wonderful event for all of you.  There is still time to register if you have not yet done so.  See you at the NHAWLT Conference!

Mary Chamberlain
NHAWLT President

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