In episode 87, Stacey interviews Heather Sherrow about the novice-level unit on descriptions that she developed called Soy Yo: Bringing Life, Purpose, and Meaning to Your Novice Descriptions Unit. This unit tackles stereotypes, celebrates differences, and encourages students to be themselves using songs, memes, commercials, tweets, infographics, and other authentic resources. Heather has presented this unit at several conferences including this past November at ACTFL and has generously shared all of her resources online. Listen as Heather describes her unit and then click through to the show notes to access everything mentioned in the episode!

Or listen on iTunes/the Apple podcast app, on the Google Podcast app, or on Stitcher!

BONUS RESOURCE: Please print off this Episode Guide to use as a resource as you listen!


Show Notes

We welcome feedback, resources, and diverse perspectives on this topic! To contribute to the conversation started here, leave us a voicemail or send a text message to (629)888-3398. Or you can follow us on Twitter @weteachlang or use this contact form to send us an email.

Heather Sherrow is a middle school Spanish teacher in Howard County, MD. Episode based on presentation done at ACTFL, NECTFL, and MFLA. You can reach out to Heather on Twitter @heather_sherrow


Resources mentioned in this episode…

…Heather’s ENTIRE presentation and ALL of her resources is available at

Courtney Cochran’s dating game

Kara Jacobs’s resources for Soy Yo

an article about research that indicates that we make less emotional decisions in a second language

Sara-Elizabeth Cottrell’s most beautiful people blog post


Previous episodes of WTL you might enjoy if you like this topic…

Episode 82: Social Justice and Representation with LJ Randolph

Episode 75: Comprehensifying and Extending Authentic Resources with Kara Jacobs

Episode 51: Developing as a Professional and Presenting at Conferences with Erin Carlson


8 thoughts on “We Teach Languages Episode 87: A Novice Descriptions Unit with Heather Sherrow

  1. This was such a fantastic episode. Heather’s materials are so rich and full of really great input. I feel can easily be adapted to teach my novice college students. I can see how much hard work she put into this. Thank you!

  2. I loved this episode. Thank you for walking us through your thought process in creating this unit, for sharing all of your amazing resources and sparking new ideas for me!

  3. This is why I love our community. Heather freely shares an amazing unit that inspired others and by giving her materials (which are incredible), someone new to the best practices promoted by ACTFL can use and then try to tweak their own units.

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