The (Dis)comfort Zone
Thursday, December 5 @ 11:20 a.m. - 12:20 p.m.
So many of us connect with colleagues as well as teaching and learning opportunities online. This talk looks at one aspect of online culture and the effect it has on our mental and even physical health. Like teaching methodologies and theories of grammar, teacher narratives are shaped by trends and fashions. Cresting the wave in 2019 is the idea of the “comfort zone,” notably as a place teachers should endeavor to leave. In this talk, I’ll look at the science behind the comfort zone, as well as some other unhelpful teacher narratives, and then not only discuss what to do when confronted by them in the workplace or on social media but propose a kinder, more realistic, and more helpful model of personal and professional development.
About the Presenter:
Dorothy Zemach taught English, French, and Japanese for over 25 years in Asia, Africa, and the US. She holds an MA in TESL from the School for International Training in Vermont, USA. An author of over 20 textbooks, she now concentrates on writing and editing English language teaching materials and conducting teacher training workshops. In 2012, she founded a micropress (visit at http://wayzgoosepress.com) that publishes fiction, non-fiction, and educational materials. Her areas of specialty and interest are teaching writing, teaching reading, business English, academic English, testing, and humor. She is a frequent plenary speaker at international conferences, and a blogger for Teacher Talk at Azar Grammar. Her personal website is http://dorothyzemach.com
Technology in Language Teaching: What Works, What Doesn't
Friday, December 6 @ 11:20 a.m. - 12:20 p.m.
Technology in Education (EdTech) has always been a difficult and challenging area, and no more so than in the last two decades, which have witnessed a speed of development never before seen. For most teachers, the end result has been a constant game of catch-up, or simply confusion about where to start, and what to use. In this session I will look at the current state of technology development, and examine three technologies which are making headlines across a wide variety of disciplines: Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) - and ask the question: do these technologies have anything to offer the practising teacher or language student? I will then move on to examine what I believe to be the key technology which should be in every teacher's toolkit: the mobile phone.
About the Presenter:
Gavin is Director of Technology for The Consultants-E (https://www.theconsultants-e.com) - working in online training and consultancy, mostly in the EdTech field - and also module leader (MATALL) on the NILE / University of Chichester MAPDLE (MA in Professional Development for Language Education). A former Honorary Secretary and Chair of ElCom at IATEFL (the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language), he has also been a Trustee for International House London and a committee member of the Educational Writers Group of the Society of Authors. He currently serves as a Trustee for Volcano Theatre Company in Swansea. A regular keynote speaker at conferences worldwide, Gavin is also author of The Internet & The Language Classroom (CUP 2000, 2007) and co-author of the award-winning publications How To Teach English with Technology (Longman 2007) and Digital Literacies (Routledge 2013, second edition 2020, forthcoming). His most recent book, Going Mobile, was published by DELTA Publishing in 2014.
Food for Thought
Friday, December 6 @ 12:40 p.m. - 1:40 p.m.
This session will raise questions that are at the heart of effective classroom instruction: How can instructors be more innovative? How can they promote learning, creativity, and critical thinking? And how can they foster an engaging, inclusive classroom environment? Drawing on the speaker’s 25 years of experience in the field of English language teaching — as an instructor, teacher-trainer, materials and curriculum developer, administrator, manager, writer, and school owner — possible answers to these questions will be offered for discussion, analysis, and reflection.
Attendees will have the opportunity to:
- reflect on effective approaches to language teaching
- learn practical ideas for developing 21st century skills
- discuss how to foster innovation and inclusivity
About the Presenter:
Christien Lee, who has dual Canadian and British citizenship, has worked in English Language Teaching since 1994. His roles have included teacher, teacher trainer, curriculum developer, materials writer, director of studies, consultant, and author. He has broad experience in different aspect of ELT, but specializes in academic English and, particularly, exam preparation. Currently, his focus is on writing books and materials and developing innovative e-learning resources. He is the author of several ELT books, including other titles for National Geographic Learning.