Angela Gardner, AATSP Buckeye Chapter President 2017
As we return to our classrooms this fall, we may be thinking of new ways to improve our instructional practices by honing our language and pedagogical skills to best serve our students. One of the challenges to seeking support to improve instructional practices, language, and pedagogical skills is that of finding adequate funding, as district limit their contributions for professional development or have strict and challenging criteria for reimbursement.
Fortunately, through organizations such as The American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP), Spanish and Portuguese Language teachers can seek scholarships to support language immersion activities, among others. A current listing of available scholarships and stipends for teachers can be found at http://www.aatsp.org/?page=2017Scholarships. These awards include scholarships to fund travel for research; conference attendance in Salamanca, Spain in 2018; summer study abroad programs; and more. Note that the list will be updated for 2018 applicants sometime in the coming months, with deadlines in early Spring for many of the scholarships.
Additionally, teachers of Spanish and Portuguese can support their learners by chartering a chapter of the Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica or Sociedad Hispánica de Amistad, both of which offer scholarships and financial awards to students for noteworthy work. See the web page at http://www.aatsp.org/page/shhawardsfor more information on scholarships and awards for Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica members, and http://www.aatsp.org/?page=SHAAwards for information on awards for Sociedad Hispánica de Amistad.
Please do not let a lack of funding keep you from seeking opportunities to grow as a professional! Seek out and apply for scholarships and awards through AATSP and other professional organizations, and continue to work to share these experiences with students and colleagues, alike!