Resource: Czech-Language Interview re: Fall of Communism

On the occasion of the thirty years’ anniversary of the fall of
communism, we have broadcast, on the Czech cable TV station, exclusive interviews with Petr Pithart, the first
Prime Minister of the post-communist Czech Republic and a close
collaborator of Czechoslovak President Václav Havel:

(The interviews are in Czech with English subtitles)
Britské listy Interview 232: Petr Pithart: 1968 was the only time when
I believed that the world might be better
Britské listy Interview 233: Petr Pithart: Why were the Prague Spring
politicians such cowards?
Britské listy Interview 234: Petr Pithart: Post-invasion decades in
Czechoslovkia: An era of timelessness

See also:

Britské listy Interview 220: Petr Pithart about current threats to
democracy: ” I never thought that the past was so powerful”.

Webinar: A Russian Bridge Course: Navigating the Transition from Language-Driven to Content-Driven Courses

Event Date: November 19, 2019

Led by Lynne deBenedette
November 19 at 5:30pm EST

Register now

In this webinar, Lynne deBenedette will discuss how to create a course for learners who are roughly at the ACTFL Intermediate Mid proficiency level that focuses both on content learning and language learning in a balanced way.  In the more commonly taught languages these courses are sometimes referred to as “bridge courses” –when students transition from lower-level language courses (organized around a textbook) to upper-level courses that primarily focus on content materials (films and / or readings). deBenedette will consider how much content material is practical at this level, how to choose it, and how to assess student learning of that content.  Drawing on the content materials selected, she will discuss how to choose language forms to focus on. The webinar will examine in detail examples of classroom materials to see how the content-learning is counterbalanced with focused work on language form, and how classroom tasks are sequenced to guide learners from input to output.  The webinar will conclude with a list of principles for implementing this approach with a range of content topics.

Lynne deBenedette is Senior Lecturer in Russian at Brown University, where she has taught since 1995. She is a co-author, with William J. Comer, Alla Smyslova and Jonathan Perkins, of the first-year Russian language textbook Между нами ( At Brown she coordinates the Russian language program and teaches Russian and (occasionally) Czech.

  • The webinar is free for current ACTR members ($15 fee for non-members)
  • All registered participants will receive access to the webinar recording. Register even if you cannot attend the webinar live. 
  • Certificate of participation will be emailed upon request

Resource/Call for Submissions: Language Learning and Technology Journal

We are very happy to announce that our special issue of Language Learning & Technology on New Developments in Virtual Exchange in Foreign Language Education (Volume 23, Number 3) is now available at

Please visit the LLT website and be sure to sign up to receive your free subscription if you have not already done so.

Also, we welcome your contributions for future issues. If you have questions about this process, or wish to submit a manuscript, please check our guidelines for submission at

Resource/Call for Submissions: The FLTMAG: A free magazine on technology integration in language teaching and learning

FLTMAG main site:
November 2019 issue:

If you have a topic related to technology and language teaching and learning that you are interested in writing about, the next issue will come out in March and we are looking for submissions. For more information, see, or if you have further questions you can email

Resource: Russian Cartoons

All the Ruslan Russian 1 video cartoons (“Better than the Simpsons!”) are now free online. There are 50 minutes of high quality cartoons with and without subtitles in Russian, in 10 lessons from beginner to A1 level, with illustrated dialogues, texts, poems and songs for learners and with about a dozen different voices, including artists from the Rossica Choir of Saint Petersburg. The cartoons were produced by Alexander Menshikov in Kaliningrad and follow the storyline of the Ruslan Russian 1 course. They will be useful both for learners working individually and for teachers in the classroom, and particularly useful for those teachers who want to inject some fun into their lessons!

To find them, go to and follow the red link “Ruslan 1 Cartoons” or click here.

Resource: The Linguists Family – Семья лингвистов

We are an Italian-Belarusian couple and live in Italy. We have recently launched a YouTube channel to help people learn Russian.

In our videos you will find short dialogues in Russian with Russian and English subtitles.

Each video has a page of exercises (+ key) written by Agata, the native half of the family. Actually, in addition to being a YouTuber, Agata teaches Russian, Belorussian and Polish.

Resource: Translation YouTube channel

Перевод жив: переводчики о переводе

In our weekly video lectures, running between 8 and 20 minutes, we talk about specific aspects of translation, interpretation, TI theory, and the training of translators and interpreters in what we believe is an accessible and mildly entertaining manner. 
We don’t talk fast and try to use a lot of visuals, so some our videos may be suitable material for intermediate students of Russian as well. 

Resource: Foreign Language Teaching Podcast

Foreign Language Teaching Podcast 

Podcast host Dr. Natalie McCauley and her guest discuss a number of topics related to language teaching and assessment, such as:
– how attending an ACTFL oral proficiency workshop changed Dr. Rifkin’s teaching;
– why it is important to study abroad and why just “being there is not enough”;
– how teachers can reduce their presence in the classroom so that students get more time to use the language;
– why a successful language classroom is a ‘noisy’ classroom;
– the concept of “intensity of engagement’ as an alternative approach to lesson planning;
– how Dr. Rifkin assigns and structures students’ presentations; 
– ways to sustain students’ motivation as they continue their study of Russian, and many others.
You can listen to the interview on its page or on your favorite podcast platform (iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify).

Resource: Data and Donuts Workshop Series

Event Dates: Fridays at 3pm from Sept. 13 to October 18

Data & Donuts for Faculty, Staff, and Students

UT Libraries Research Data Services is hosting their popular Data & Donuts (yes, there will be donuts!) workshop series on Fridays at 3:00pm beginning September 13 through October 18 in the Perry-Castañeda Library’s Learning Commons. On September 13, Research Data Services Coordinator Jessica Trelogan will kick off the series with “Managing Research Data: a Guide to Good Practice.”