VenTESOL and the U.S. Embassy
Reactivating Teachers’ Powers in ELT
Regional Convention Tour 2014- 2015
Barcelona, Anzoategui State
1. CAN I REALLY GET MY STUDENTS TO SPEAK?
By Prof. Marina Majonica
Research continues to prove that pair work applied to speaking activities is an excellent strategy to use in language teaching because it helps develop fluency, maximizes student participation and increases talking time. However, many teachers aren’t sure how to go about it because they believe students will continue to use L1 for the activities and are reluctant to relinquish control, especially in large classes. It is the objective of this plenary, for teachers to students of all levels who are interested in increasing speaking practice in class, to see solutions to common challenges regarding pair work, note the advantages of pair work and know when to use it, how to set it up and even recognize pair work opportunities in order to successfully incorporate speaking activities in class.
2. WHERE’S YOUR SUPER FIRESTARTING POWER? A SPELLING BEE CASE
By Prof. José Zapata
Most of the ELT classes in Venezuela have been teacher-centered, that is, teachers have not been providing the spark of learning to their students so that the process of learning can be led not only by teachers but also by students. Marva Collins, an american educator, said "Once children learn how to learn, nothing is going to narrow their mind. The essence of teaching is to make learning contagious, to have one idea spark another". In other words, a real super teacher must light the spark or fire of learning on his students, that is, teachers must be firestarters of learning. However, how can this be done? ELT is a diverse world where teachers’ creativity and dynamism are involved; of course, the level of these ones may vary depending on the teacher. Therefore, the general objective of this presentation is to demonstrate how teachers of English can engage their students in the learning of the language in a more motivational, inspiring and meaningful way through the use of Spelling Bee competitions. That is to say, students need to be engaged in what they are learning and Spelling Bee is one of the ways to reach this goal.
3. GAMIFYING THE EFL CLASSROOM: REVAMPING YOUR LUDIC POWER
By Prof. Miguel Pérez
Gaming has always been part of our lives. According to Aldrich C., “Games are a more natural way to learn than traditional classrooms. Not only have humans been learning by playing games since the beginning of our species, but intelligent animals have as well”, starting from peek-a-boo through Super Mario Bros and World of Warcraft. It is undeniable that gamification is a very useful technique which has the ability to transform the EFL classroom making it more lively and engaging. It facilitates learning through a new and innovative way fostering collaboration, teamwork, creativity and motivation among struggling students. Games capture learners’ attention and encourage language production. What is more, games can be easily adapted for teaching and can be used to practice all language skills.
The main goal of this presentation is to show teachers that gamification can have a great impact on boosting motivation in the language classroom and how they can use it in their contexts. Practical ideas and games will be shared with EFL teachers working for public and private institutions from classrooms with no computers to classrooms with video projectors and Internet connection.
4. LEARN ENGLISH IDIOMS - IT'S A "PIECE OF CAKE"
by Prof. Jeisa Fuentes
The use of idioms has a great influence on the teaching and learning process of a foreign language, because it could be one of the ways to give students better conditions to improve communication skills in the daily context. Moreover, experts have expressed that the common use of idioms in daily speech for English speakers has brought a necessity in the teaching field to implement the use of this tool inside and outside the classroom in order to help students be competitive, increase their vocabulary and the informal way to speak in English. The importance and advantage of using idioms in a foreign language is necessary to know because helps to students to learn new vocabulary, improve their communication skills based on the use of idioms in their spoken/written English. The students are motivated in classes in order to be able make dialogues, make sentences and understand texts with idioms.
5. HOW CAN WE BECOME AGENTS OF CHANGE? AN INTEGRATED MODEL IN ELT
By Prof. Milagros Quijada
Teachers have the opportunity to reach out to people every day. With such a great opportunity comes a great responsibility: to enable others to lead themselves and lead others to progress. Nowadays, it is imperative to teach for a better world. This could be a challenging task; however, there are always ways to lead others to become agents of change in their communities. The main objective of this session is to provide teachers with ideas on how to incorporate values, social responsibility and leadership in their English curriculum to lead students to become better citizens.
6. HAVE WE CLOSELY MIRRORED? A BALANCED REFLECTION OF OUR ELT PRACTICE
by Prof. Johannes Rojas
The aim of this presentation is to give teacher a glimpse of a balanced teaching practice reflection not only based on the reality of the educational contexts the are involved but also the chance to take a pick on their own practice (what they did, do and intend to do soon enough), check out their teaching identity (“I am teacher so what?”), reasons for keeping on teaching (Is there any?) and make them aware of the changes they are able to make with just a tiny purpose and teaching passion. Teaching must be anchored to a variety of changes led by the context need, providing the adaptability it demands to make of it a teacher-student successful experience despite the cons it faces; resources, payment, low salaries and many other situations can break down all projects, but teachers need to be reminded that those things will not be embraced differently if they do not start making a difference on themselves.
7. MY REAL TEACHING POWERS
by Psic. Johnthan Rivero
There are some research papers that show how teachers’ skills are decreasing, without mentioning the ineffective class management they have. This shows how low the motivation levels are, and how the need for growing and contribution are not given any priority because of everyday distractions that keep them in their comfort zone. These low motivation levels influence students’ behavior and the importance they give to learning. With the coaching approach, we can give teachers a push to start changing their perceptions about themselves, their students and the outside world. “My Real Teaching Powers” looks to awaken the spirit of those who accept the re-calling of their life’s purpose as teachers and feed the need of growing and contributing with our society, as well as reclaim the importance of being a teacher by showing the participants the similarities that teachers have with superheroes, based on the philosophy by J. Campbell.
DATE: October 4th, 2014
Time: 7 am to 6 pm
Venue: IUTSO Barcelona, Anzoategui State
Participants: 39 (15 pre-service teachers / 24 in-service teachers)
Regional Convention Tour 2014- 2015
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