Compiled by Lynda Steyne
Teacher Development Opportunites
National (and international)
- ELTForum.sk Teacher Development Conference 2013
When: 7-8 June 2013
ONLY 20 EUR!Chuck Sandy – one of the plenary speakers – has done an interview for us. Don’t miss part 2!
- SOL Slovakia presents ‘SO[U]L Camp‘ with Kathy King and Mark Andrews!
When: 16-24 July 2013
Where: Cadca, Slovakia
For: English teachers from all over Central Europe, to not only gain some new teaching skills but to recuperate and be rejuvenated after the long school year.
- FREE webinar archive from American TESOL Institute. LOTS of good ideas and training.
- Free webinar: Mobile Apps in Language Learning
From Tesol Toronto
- Oral correction: reflections from a recovering recaster: How do you deal with learner errors in spoken language? Does it really help to repeat the learner’s statement replacing the error with the correct grammar or vocab?
At IATEFL Liverpool, Cecilia Lemos shared what she’s learned over her many years of teaching.
- FREE IATEFL BESIG online conference 2013
When: Saturday 15 June from 9am-6pm (CET)
For business English and ESP teachers
Call for presentation proposals!
- Call for Proposals: Deadline: 15 May 2013
The 11th National & International Conference – Moravian and Silesian Association of Teachers of English, CZ
When: September 13-14, 2013
Where: Faculty of Education, Palacký University, Olomouc, CZ
Plenaries: Daniela Clarke, Graham Hall, Mark Andrews, Piotr Steinbrich, Simon Gill and Karen Saxby
- Call for Papers: Deadline: 24 May 2013
26th Annual IATEFL Business English SIG Conference
When: 8-10 November 2013
- Call for Papers: Deadline: June 30, 2013
TESOL France Colloquium 2013
When: November 22, 23 and 24, 2013
Plenaries: Scott Thornbury and Sue Palmer
- IATEFL-H Annual Conference 2013
Speakers: Henry Widdowson, Barbara Seidlhofer, Dörnyei Zoltán, Bethany Cagnol, and Gary Anderson, George Pickering
When: 4-6 October 2013
- the 1st International Loras Network Workshop
Topic of the year: Bilingualism and Multilingualism in ELT and Families
When: Sunday, September 22nd, 2013
Where: Zug, Switzerland
More info: firstname.lastname@example.org
Activities and Lesson Plans
- “Boston bombings: Czech Republic is not Chechnya”
The bombings in Boston last month had an interesting sidenote: Americans kept mixing Chechnya (the bombers’ home country) up with the Czech Republic. Needless to day, the Czechs were not amused.
Target learner: Teens and adults; Pre-Intermediate (A2)
A 26-page printable lesson containing listenings and 30+ online quizzes
And a 2-page mini-lesson
- What are you good at?
Howard Gardner’s theory of Multiple Intelligences presents the idea that all learners are different. In this lesson, learners think about different types of intelligence and then take a quiz to find out what intelligences they are strong in.
Target learner: Teens and adults; B1 and higher
Multiple Intelligences test from the Birmingham Grid for Learning that you can use as an introductory or follow up activity.
- Nik’s Daily English Activities: ‘the 100 Most Common Words in English’ for us and our students. How many do you know off the top of your head? You get 12 minutes to come up with all 100. Think before you start!
- How to text in English: very helpful article to share with your students on abbreviations for texting and such things.
- 7 Tips on How to Improve Your Email Writing Skills: great for learners in business situations but also for us teachers.
- From Busyteacher.org: Free worksheets, including cloze exercises with lyrics (Mama Mia!, Tom’s Diner & Never Gonna Give You Up)
✔ Word Formation
✔ Song worksheet: Never Gonna Give You up by Rick Astley
✔ Song worksheet: Live while we’re Young by One Direction
✔ Song Worksheet: Tom’s Diner by Suzanne Vega
✔ Song Worksheet : Cosmic Love by Florence + The Machine’s
✔ Movie Worksheet : Life with Feathers
✔ Song Worksheet: Mama Mia!
Videos for Class
Dove produced a video campaign called ‘Real Beauty’. Film English has created a lesson plan using it (and some of the criticism of it).
Language level: Upper Intermediate (B2) – Advanced C1
Learner type: Teens and adults
Time: 90 minutes
Free Downloadable Books
The basics on humanistic approaches to teaching English:
Provides an introduction to humanistic approaches to language learning. There are articles defining humanistic values in ELT; community language learning; computer simulations; ‘suggestopedia’; and the Silent Way.
Stuff to ponder
- Professional Development – Not An Option, by James Taylor:
“Professional development means that a teacher is at the very least keeping up to date with developments in their field and updating their teaching accordingly. It can go a lot further than this, encompassing writing, reflective practice, presenting and networking, but it doesn’t have to. What it symbolises is that the teacher takes their job seriously.”
- Making the Most Out of Teacher Collaboration: some great advice on how to get the most out of teamwork and collaboration…for many of us, learning how to be constructive instead of complaining just might be the biggest hurdle we have face.
- Connections and Influences – Mike Griffin: ‘As teachers we are in the change business.’
Negative change is easy – just do nothing. But positive change is almost always difficult. How can we cope when change is difficult?
- 10 Things we can learn about motivation from Good Guy Greg – part one and part two: Adam Simpson on keeping motivation (ours and our students’) going.
- Critical Thinking also by Adam:
“Consider this: every declarative statement in the course books we use is an answer to a question. The teaching world in which we live frequently sees this relationship between the statement and its accompanying question. One seemingly cannot exist without the other. This is a crying shame, as it does nothing to promote thinking of any kind, never mind critical thinking.”
- The Reason Your Elementary School Teacher Matters: A powerful essay (and TEDtalk video) from Rita Pierson on why no other job could satisfy her like teaching…
“Teachers don’t make a lot of money. They are usually not deemed worthy of news coverage unless there is a scandal or a strike. Most of the time, their major accomplishments are shared only with colleagues and family members and not the media. The celebration is often cut short by some catastrophe the next day. Yet, in spite of the highs and lows, I cannot think of another profession that brings both joy and challenge on a daily basis.”
- 5 Simple Ideas That Can Transform Your Teaching
1. Don’t grade everything.
2. Not all ideas—or standards—are equally important.
3. The school year is a marathon, not a series of sprints.
4. Difficult things take practice.
5. Curiosity, uncertainty, and confusion are crucial ingredients in learning.
Correcting Student Error in Writing and Speech: When, How, and How Much Misconceptions about correcting error in second language writing (and speaking, for that matter):
1. every error should be corrected, no matter the situation and no matter how small
2. correcting errors somehow results in improved language production
3. the learner’s emotional response to correction doesn’t matter
- Ten things you might not have known about the English language: For us, English teachers, perhaps the most important is no. 10: The English language will change a lot during your lifetime, like it or not.
- American and British English differences from Macmillan: Meaning is all about location.
- School cancelled due to ‘sun day’ in Washington: “SCHOOL CANCELLED DUE TO GREAT WEATHER! WAHOOO!” Anybody want to work for this director?
- A primary school notorious for its lack of discipline, where backpacks were banned because students might use them to carry weapons… What the arts can do: radical change. And hope.
Helpful Tools for Teachers
- Dyslexia for Teachers of English as a Foreign Language is a project that has produced some FREE online resources for teachers and teacher trainers. There is also a series of newsletters in English, German, Polish, Hungarian and Czech.
“Over the past two years, academics and teachers from 6 EU countries have been working together to research, develop and pilot training materials, for pre-service and in-service language teachers. The result is 10 units of material designed for both face-to-face training and for teachers wishing to access it independently via on-line self-study. In both modes, detailed instructions about the aims of the units, the time frames, and procedures of the different units are offered, in order to guide the trainers/participants. The materials are extremely flexible and can also be tailored to individual needs. The printed and electronic versions of all the materials and additional resources are now available free of charge from the website, where further information on the project can also be found.”
- Academic Writing – Ideas for international students: If you’re teaching in a bilingual school or university students, they might find this helpful. We as teachers might find it helpful too.
- Tools for Educators – free templates: LOTS of help here to make worksheets of all kinds, including crossword puzzles, wordfinds and picture dictionary sheets. Great resource!
- Teaching business English and looking for wisdom? A part from the recommendations in this post – Business English Idea: 3 People to Follow – Charles Rei’s entire blog looks pretty helpful.
- 6 Idioms and Expressions to Welcome Spring
- Nik’s QuickShout: Teaching Grammar Through Songs
- Tips for keeping your class under control from the British Council Teaching English website:
- Planning a lesson
- Lesson menus
- Grouping students
- Using warmers: video tip
- Energising your class: video tip
- Conference Collages: Using Student-generated Images: Your school might have banned your students from taking pictures in classrooms and the building, but do you realize the resource you’re missing out on for your language lessons?
- Lead&Learn is holding a contest in which the prize is an all-expense paid Pilgrims course in the UK next year.
- ‘Cambridge English BEC – Teachers’ Competition 2013! Win a 2 week residential teacher development course in Cambridge by submitting a practical idea on how to help candidates prepare for the exam.
- Macmillan Cultural Readers competition for YOUR CLASS!
Write your own Cultural Reader with your class. What can you tell us about your town, city or country? You can write about many topics, like history, geography, nature, culture, people, food, or sport. You can include text and drawings.
All entries must be received by midnight (GMT) on 30th June 2013 and winners will be notified by 31st July 2013.
IELTS in Kosice, Slovakia, 22 June 2013