Saturday Seminars 2023

Hudson Valley Writing Project

Saturday Seminars


Join the Hudson Valley Writing Project to gain new insights and powerful teaching practices for teaching multilingual learners so that they can develop new skills and confidence to express their ideas in speaking and writing.

December 2, 2023

*Note: This event will be in the Lecture Centernot Old Main Building.

8:30 a.m. - 9 a.m.     Sign-in Registration, Welcome, Refreshments

9 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.   Keynote Address

10:45 a.m.- 12 p.m.  Workshops

Event Schedule

KEYNOTE SESSION for all participants: 

NUANCED LABELS: Thinking Carefully about Long-term English Learners

Categories of learners - like Newcomers, Students with Interrupted Formal Education (SIFE), and Long-term English Learners (LTELs) - help to guide and define what appropriate ENL instruction for English learner groups should look like. In New York, LTEL refers to a group of students who “have completed at least six years of ELL services in a New York State school and continue to require ELL services” (NYSED, 2023). But beyond this clinical, quantifiable definition, what are some overarching school-related characteristics of this group of adolescent learners?


In Beth Clark-Gareca's interactive keynote, we will explore the Long-term English Learner, first as a descriptive term used in state and federal ESOL policy, and second, more importantly, as a middle or high school student who is stuck in what can feel like a never-ending ENL assessment loop. Through written vignettes from students and teachers, we will unpack what we know empirically and anecdotally about these linguistically complex humans, and ultimately, what light (or shadow) this label casts on our instruction, policy, and overall understandings of English language proficiency.

Beth Clark-Gareca is Associate Professor and Director of K-12 TESOL programs at SUNY Binghamton. She has been working with English language teachers in the United States and abroad for more than 20 years, most recently, as a Fulbright specialist in Kendari, Indonesia. Her current research includes a project to synthesize what is known empirically in the literature about English language practice and programs in an effort to potentially replicate successful models. She is also conducting a document study on LTELs to explore consistencies and inconsistencies in the elusive definition of this particular group of learners.



A PICTURE GENERATES 1,000 WORDS: Using Visual Thinking Strategies with Multilingual Learners

Danielle Gomez, Newburgh Free Academy and Tom Meyer, SUNY New Paltz

Visual images are the perfect medium to invite language learners to express their ideas, practice conversation skills through speaking and listening, and learn new words and concepts. Drawing on visual thinking strategies, we will talk, listen, read, and write about a powerful image before examining what happened when a range of language learners did the same. (PreK-12)


TRANSLANGUAGING: Supporting Multilingual Writers' Expression and Fluency

Lucia Brea, Jefferson Elementary School

When we ask multilingual students to use their first language as a resource when writing, they often feel less “stuck” and more comfortable because they already have words to express their feelings. In this workshop, we will explore translanguaging as a culturally responsive method for teaching writing. (Grade 1-College)



Short, Ungraded Writing Activities as Entry Points for All Students

Deborah Van Doren, Pawling Middle School

“Quick writes” are a great way to help students reflect, process information, and communicate their understanding. Quick writes can be particularly useful in the MLL classroom as a means of developing writing fluency, fostering creativity, and building self-awareness. In this session, we will try some quick writing activities and examine their use in the classroom. (Grades 1-College)



Rosemary Sharpe, New Paltz Central School District

Multilingual learners have many ideas to share, but they need the tools to be able to express them in English. Working at the level of the sentence can be a powerful for students, providing them with new tools for language learning and expression. In this workshop, we will practice a variety of sentence-level activities that help students learn the "functional syntax" they need to express their complex ideas new ways. (Grades 3-12)

December 2, 2023| 8:30 am- 12:00 pm | SUNY New Paltz - Lecture Center 102

HVWP is a NYSED-approved sponsor of CTLE.

Certificates documenting 3 CTLE hours available upon request.

Registration fees: $15 in advance / $20 at the door | $5 for college students 




Save the date for Spring semester Saturday Seminars on: 

February 3, February 24, and April 6 at SUNY New Paltz, Old Main Building(OM) from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. 


Saturday Seminars are an opportunity for teaching professionals, candidates, and students to brush up on key classroom skills while learning practices and methods from colleagues in the field. HVWP holds 4-6 Saturday Seminars each year during the fall, winter, and spring.

Saturday Seminars regularly feature our Institute cohort members leading small, practical workshops tailored around a theme or concept, often led by interactive keynotes from respected leaders in the field. 

To receive announcements about future Saturday Seminars and other HVWP programs, please join our email list

Please note that this event will take place in person at SUNY New Paltz in the Lecture Center. See the SUNY New Paltz campus map for directions and parking.

COST: $15 in advance/ $20 at the door ($5 for college students)

HVWP is a NYSED-approved sponsor of CTLE. Participants will receive certificates documenting 3 CTLE hours after the event, upon request.

Questions? Please email us at or call (845) 257-2836.

This program is provided with support from the School of Education and Campus Auxiliary Services at SUNY New Paltz.