PLONS: Professional Learning Online Network Spaces

The word plons in Dutch describes the noise made by something splashing into a surface and is thus an apt name for the Professional Learning Online Network Spaces, which are designed to create a ripple effect, by fostering linkages between language teaching, research and practice, and shared ideas and resources between educators.

These groups are intended for foreign language educators in middle school, high school and college institutions. There will be five PLONS organized through 2022; calls to be involved in these communities will appear here periodically until then (usually in the summer preceding the activity). PLONS are usually active over one or two years.

Foreign Languages, Multiliteracies, and the Literary

The application to be part of the third group of educators is here:

Application Deadline: September 13, 2021

This Professional Learning Online Network Space focuses on the use of literary texts and modes of reading in the development of literacy in a new language. In response to calls from the field, including from professional organizations such as ACTFL, to better integrate literacy and meaningful engagements with authentic texts into the language classroom, this group will focus on the particular role that literary reading can play in the development of linguistic and intercultural awareness. Literary reading here includes interpreting and responding to texts that are classified as works of literature AND work with non-literary texts ranging from advertising to journalism, from blogs to book reviews that emphasizes the creative, playful elements of these everyday literacy practices (see also Foreign Languages and the Literary in the Everyday).

Potential participants for academic year 2021/2022 will include: 

  • Language educators at every level of instruction;
  • Graduate Student Instructors or pre-service teachers;
  • Language Program Directors and Coordinators.

Participants will:

  • work independently or in collaboration with colleagues on lesson plans and materials;
  • workshop their lessons and materials based on feedback from other participants and the facilitators;  
  • share resources and engage in discussions on how to integrate literary reading into language teaching and learning;
  • be eligible to apply for financial support to present their lessons and materials at professional meetings, such as the 2021 convention of the American Council of Teachers of Foreign Languages;
  • have the option to publish their lesson and materials online as a CERCLL open educational resource or as part of the Foreign Languages and the Literary and the Everyday (FLLITE) Project (

The specific focus on this PLONS will be determined through discussions among participants, but will be guided by the following essential questions:

  • What are some of the benefits and challenges of integrating literary reading into language teaching and learning?
  • What texts and activities work best to foster literary reading? 
  • What tasks can help us to connect these to learning goals specific to the language and culture classroom? How can these work in different modalities, e.g. online, hybrid, face-to-face? 

Some important dates

  • September 13, 2021: Applications due
  • September 20, 2021: Notification of acceptance
  • Late September: Introductory Zoom Meeting

Participation will include…

  • Informal discussions on Slack (a free networking app)
  • Monthly Zoom meetings


APPLICATION INFORMATION (included here for reference purposes; follow the link below to access the online form)

There is no fee to participate in the PLONS. Interested participants should complete the application form, which will ask them to provide the following details:

  • Name and email address 
  • Language(s) you teach 
  • What modality/modalities are you teaching in the term? 
  • Teaching context (elementary, middle, high school, university/college)
  • In brief, what most interests you about this PLONS?
  • For which particular courses/levels or curricula would you be interested in developing project(s)?
  • What experiences (if any) have the you had with with online groups/networks?

You can access the application at

Questions about PLONS?

Contact Diane Richardson and Chantelle Warner for answers.