Terminology: What is an OWL educator?


The OLA vs OWL Educator

As OWL techniques have infiltrated classrooms throughout the nation, there has been some debate amongst teachers. What do we call ourselves? Who are we? Are we OLA teachers? Are we OWL teachers? What does it mean to be an OLA teacher, an OWL teacher?

Over the past year, I have started to refer to myself as both an OLA and an OWL educator to the confusion of both my colleagues and parents.  To clarify, OWL stands for Organic World Languages, an educational organization based in Portland, Oregon.  This fabulous group under the direction of Darcy Rogers developed a teaching method that promotes Organic Language Acquisition (OLA). OLA is the theory that language learning should be natural and painless and mirror the processes of first language acquisition.  I ascribe to this theory and therefore call myself an OLA teacher.  Additionally, I am also an OWL teacher as I employ the specific methods endorsed by Organic World Languages.