ESP, Trust, and Empowerment

Kevin Knight
Kevin Knight

Hello, ESPers worldwide!

When I first came to Japan in the mid 80s, I was a relatively young teacher. I recall working with mid-level managers in the training center of a large Sony factory. Sometimes the managers would disagree with the answers I gave to the activities in a textbook. However, they stopped challenging me when I did one simple thing—I explained that my answers were from the teacher’s manual. (I would also open the teacher’s manual and point to the answer in the text.) I was amazed at how quickly the students accepted the authority of the teacher’s manual. Continue reading

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Teaching About Audience Through Public Service Announcements

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

As I mentioned in some of my previous posts, the concept of audience is not always easy to comprehend for second language writers.  And even when students seem to have an idea what this term means conceptually, they may still struggle applying it to their writing.  In my post today, I would like to share a few activities built around video Public Service Announcements (PSAs) which, as we know, are freely available online and thus are easily accessible to most students and teachers.  I found these videos to be an excellent tool in helping second language writers better understand the concept of audience. Continue reading

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Release of Governance Review Recommendations

TESOL International Association
TESOL International Association

At its meeting in March, the TESOL Board of Directors received the final report from the Governance Review Task Force (GRTF). This report was made available online, and the task force’s findings were shared with leaders at the 2014 TESOL International Convention. Initial feedback collected from leaders at the convention is available here.

The final piece of the report – the recommended options and alternatives – is being released now for public feedback. Those documents are available here.

The information in these documents was developed and submitted to the board by the GRTF; no decisions have been made as to which options to pursue. The board highly values your input, feedback, and comments. The TESOL Board of Directors would like to receive your feedback before moving forward to ensure a transparent and collaborative decision-making process.

From now until 31 May 2014, the board invites you to submit your feedback and comments in response to the GRTF report. You are encouraged not only to respond to the options and alternatives, but to the findings from their review. Please use the space below to post your comments and feedback.

This comment period will be the first of two periods of public feedback as the board considers next steps in the governance review process. (A full timeline is available here.) As you will see in the report, there is much to consider in ensuring that TESOL International Association continues to meet the needs of members and the field now and into the future.

 

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Duolingo: Independent Learning

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen

Depending on the native language(s) of the students you teach, you might want to send your students to Duolingo for independent language learning and practice activities. Duolingo is a free website and app designed for language learners. It is absolutely fantastic!

Register to get started. Once registered, you choose your native language to see what languages are available for you to study. If your students speak Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, German, Russian, Hungarian, Turkish, Mandarin, Dutch, Polish, Japanese, Romanian, Hindi, Indonesian, or Greek as their native language, then they can start learning and practicing English on Duolingo today. Continue reading

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ESL Games: Multiple Meaning Puzzlers

Marc Anderson
Marc Anderson

The Game: The object of Multiple Meaning Puzzlers is to introduce and review multiple meaning words.

Research Says: It is important to employ games that “…[make] the foreign language immediately useful to the children. It brings the target language to life” (Using Games in an EFL Class for Children, Y. Mei and J. Yu-jing, 2000); Multiple Meaning Puzzlers does just that. Continue reading

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Are You a Tech Addict? A Writing & Speaking Activity

Alexandra Lowe
Alexandra Lowe

Smartphones are now so ubiquitous in adult ESL classrooms that the relationship between students and their phones is always an engaging conversation topic.  Even more important, it’s a great way to help student practice one of the most challenging speaking skills—accurately posing questions.

In my classes, I usually set up this activity up by projecting the cartoon that appeared on the cover of the July 23, 2012 issue of the New Yorker magazine.  Flanked by palm trees, members of a family are posed for a group vacation photo at the beach. However, instead of smiling gleefully for the camera, everyone is looking down, staring at their smartphones.  Continue reading

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English Language Teaching in Pre-K–5: Using Twitter for PD

Judie Haynes
Judie Haynes

Hi! My name is Judie Haynes. Welcome to my TESOL blog.  I am excited to be a TESOL blogger and to write about teaching English learners (ELs) on the Pre-K–5 levels.  I plan to discuss issues, best practices, and teaching strategies pertaining to elementary-age ELs.  Every few months, an expert in the field of  teaching ELs will be invited to either cowrite a blog with me or to be a guest blogger.

About Me

Now I’d like to tell you a little  about myself.  I taught ESL  for 28 years in an elementary school in New Jersey, USA.  I left the public school  in 2008 in order to provide professional development to classroom and ESL teachers and administrators around the United States and Canada. I  really enjoy working with teachers of ELs in workshops and in their classrooms.  One of my other goals when I left the classroom was  to spend more time writing. I am the author and coauthor  of seven books for teachers of ELs, the most recent being The Essential Guide for Educating Beginning English Learners with Debbie Zacarian.

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Teaching Business Case Studies From a Leadership Perspective

Kevin Knight
Kevin Knight

Hello, ESPers worldwide!

In Japan, the school year starts in April. In one of my classes for undergraduate students in the International Business Career (IBC) major at Kanda University of International Studies (KUIS), I teach business case studies. I have been focused on teaching such case studies from a leadership perspective.

In my experience, business case studies are the stories of organizations with problems (or challenges). I try to get my students to learn leadership lessons from these stories.

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Using Proverbs in a Writing Class

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

When I was little, I used to have a book with a collection of Russian proverbs and sayings.  I remember being absolutely fascinated by the depth of knowledge and wisdom that I discovered on the pages of that book.  Those proverbs opened a door for me to a better understanding of the Russian culture as well as important norms, morals, and life values.  Indeed, I can say they helped me become a more mature and intelligent human being.

Speaking about second language learners: Proverbs can—like in my own experience—help them learn a great deal about the target culture and the norms and values that people in that culture respect and treasure.  A writing class  is a great venue for incorporating proverbs into teaching.  Continue reading

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Greetings From Yilin and Important Initiatives From TESOL

Yilin Sun
Yilin Sun

The TESOL President’s Blog

Greetings from Yilin! I am truly honored and excited to have this opportunity to serve as president of TESOL International Association.

I’d like to thank the entire TESOL membership for choosing me to represent you and serve you in this leading international professional organization in the global ELT field! This is a responsibility that I do not take lightly, and I will endeavor to be your tireless advocate, visionary, and responsive leader in representing TESOL and all of our members with the utmost transparency and courage.
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