Foulis and Alex combine up-to-date methods and approaches to heritage language instruction in a textbook that is suitable for both experienced and inexperienced Spanish heritage instructors. The rich and varied set of activities and authentic materials (which also draw upon texts and recordings from Foulis’ project Ohio Habla) support development in cultural competency, media knowledge as well as grammar and vocabulary through independent learning and self-reflection. Through topics such as religion, language use in the family, local fiestas, students are encouraged to think about the expression of their own identity as Latin@s in the Midwest, a region not typically associated with communities of Spanish speakers. Overall, Foulis and Alex’s text is a welcome addition to the field of heritage language pedagogy. I encourage all teachers, instructors and professors to make full use of this wonderful resource in their classes.
Christine E. Shea
Associate Professor, Spanish Linguistics
Department of Spanish & Portuguese
University of Iowa
For years, we have been set on improving the heritage language classroom and the way we teach Spanish to our students. Without a doubt, with Mi idioma, mi comunidad, Elena Foulis and Stacey Alex advance towards this goal. This textbook is a game changer and it will definitely be a teaching staple in the field for years to come. Not only is it engaging, insightful, resourceful, and student-centered, it is also open-access!! Students and instructors alike will enjoy the great variety of activities and formats provided: from engaging grammar videos that support language development to culturally relevant activities and other multimedia elements that promote self-reflection. This textbook will contribute to creating the perfect environment for the appreciation of the students’ selves, their experiences, and the relationship with their heritage language. As a whole, this detailed and user-friendly textbook will surely be appealing to all teaching and learning styles.
Diego Pascal y Cabo
Assistant Professor of Spanish & Linguistics,
Bilingualism, heritage language teaching & learning
Director of Spanish Heritage Language program
University of Florida
Elena Foulis and Stacey Alex present an innovative text for the beginning heritage language learner that incorporates both project-based learning and place-based pedagogy. By adopting this focus and integrating it with multimedia texts and dynamic learning activities, the authors ensure that heritage language learning fulfills its proper goal of strengthening and sustaining Spanish-speaking communities for generations to come. This is the textbook that our field has been waiting for and I look forward to seeing its powerful influence both in the classroom and in the profession.
Professor of Hispanic Linguistics
Director of CLLC
The Ohio State University