The 37th Annual Meeting and Exposition of ACTFL
(American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) was held
in Philadelphia last November. This year’s theme was “Building
Our Strength through Languages: A National Priority.” U.S.
Secretary of Education Ron Paige and Andrew Cuomo spoke at the
opening general session.
ACTFL has an international membership of more than 7,000 foreign
language educators and administrators. Professors Helen Bachochin,
Flor María Buitrago, Luba Iskold, Eileen Ketchum, and Kathy
Wixon attended from Muhlenberg, choosing from among the many workshops
and more than 480 sessions devoted to pedagogy, literature, culture,
One of the highlights of the convention was the exposition sponsored
by publishers, universities, embassies, and governmental agencies.
We returned to campus with many textbooks, posters, and teaching
aids. Professor Buitrago, for example, purchased a beautiful doll-puppet
representing the different characters in Caperucita Roja (the classic
tale of Little Red Riding Hood, and one of the computer programs
in the Language Learning Center).
The conference was a very worthwhile experience. We enjoyed talking
to old friends and meeting new colleagues. We also had the chance
to meet many of the authors of the textbooks that we use in class,
becoming students ourselves and gathering a wealth of information.