Category Archives: Podcast Episodes

7: The Why & How of Positive Teacher-Student Relationships with Ebony Thornton

In this episode we talk about how essential positive teacher-student relationships are, particularly when we want our students to feel valued, comfortable and motivated to speak the target language.  [sign up for Talking Points]

I am joined by Ebony Thornton, a teacher in Georgia, who speaks about…

  • relationships with her own teachers and those that influenced her student-teacher relationships
  • barriers that make teacher-student relationships challenging
  • respecting distance when needed
  • how do you get to know your students
  • how effective relationships enhance the teaching and learning experience
  • the “savior” complex
  • representation in the language classroom
  • #BlackWLTeachers

Connect with Ebony Thronton

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6. Supporting New Teachers with William Anderson

In this episode we talk about supporting new language teachers in your department.  If you are an administrator, a new teacher, or a colleague with new department members there is a place for you to jump into this conversation. [sign up for Talking Points]

I am joined by William Anderson,  who leads a district program with 9 schools and over 40 teachers in the language department.  

William speaks specifically about…

  • what to look for when hiring teachers.
  • how to support new teachers in the areas of classroom management, assessments and planning.
  • what a “good” class or lesson looks like. 
  • what new teachers should be asking for support with (but don’t know that they need to ask).
  • how colleagues can support new teachers.

Connect with William Anderson

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5. Embracing Proficiency with Katya Hottenstein

In this episode I speak with Katya Hottenstein.
She and I used to work together and we both started our journey toward teaching toward proficiency around the same time.  Katya shares her insights and experience embracing proficiency as her goals in the classroom.

She speaks specifically about…

  • her first few years of teaching before embracing proficiency as a goal
  • when she started looking outside of the box and why
  • what she started to do differently and the results
  • how she uses CI  (Comprehensible Input) in her teaching
  • the benefits of teaching with CI with  a focus on proficiency

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4. What is Communicative Language Teaching?

In this episode I take on the topic of communicative language teaching (CLT).  What is it exactly and how do we teach communicatively? [sign up for Talking Points]


  • CLT is an approach and not a method.
  • Difference between an approach and a method?
  •  Bill VanPatten’s description of  CLTR.
  • The role of input.
  • The role of output.
  • The communicative classroom:
    • student-centered
    • students create with language
    • focus is communicating messages

What does this look like in the classroom?

  • Performance
  • Assessment

What does the teacher do in the communicative language classroom?

“[It is not] because some plants will grow in a desert, [that] watering the ones in your garden is a waste of time. In fact, of course, while the desert may provide the minimum conditions for a plant to grow, watering it may help it grow faster, bigger, and stronger, that is to realize its full potential.” —Larsen-Freeman and Long, 1990

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3. Language Teaching Has Come a Long Way

In this episode we look at what language teaching  looked like in the past and what it looks like now.  We get into specific methods that were based on Behaviorism and Innatism along with what teaching looks like now in the communicative classroom.


  • Audio-Lingual Method
  • Suggestopedia
  • Silent Way
  • The Natural Approach
  • Communicative Competence
  • TPR
  • TPRS
  • CI
  • OWL
  • AIM

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2. Language Teaching Then and Now

In this episode I discuss 3 major approaches to language teaching of the past 50+ years. It’s helpful to understand where it all started and how we arrived at the communicative teaching practices that we employ in our classroom.

Sometimes we need to look to the past to fully understand how to got to where we are now.

Find out about:

  • Behaviorism; Pavlov, Skinner
  • Innatism; Chomsky
  • Social Interactionism; Vygotsky, Hymes

What has been refuted, supported or sustained in our modern approaches?

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1. Who is Joshua and What Are We Doing?

I share my educational background  and teaching experience of the past 25 years.  This helps to give you a better understanding of where I’m coming from and what has contributed to my teaching approach.

You’ll also get a solid picture of what this podcast will offer you and what you can expect in each episode.

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All About the World Language Classroom Podcast

Listen to what is in store for you when you listen to the World Language Classroom podcast with Joshua Cabral.

Tips, tools and insights to help your students grow in language proficiency and communicate with confidence.

Based in research, but put into action in the classroom.

You’ll hear from Joshua as well as other language teachers who share insights and lessons learned along their language teaching journey.

Follow wherever you listen to podcasts.