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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

ABCI 2012 - ELT latest tendencies I

Hi :)

This post has a compilation of the main points from some of the workshops from the ABCI conference I attended from the 12th - 14th of July 2012.

More details on this congress on :

Below the key points from the workshops I attended:

David Nunan  1st speaker

Work Force Education in the 21st century

* English language needs of workers in a wide range of workplaces
* How can technology help meet these needs?
Maximize the effectiveness in the learning context
* Most effective and cost effective means of meeting student's needs?

 Kathleen Bailey    2nd speaker

*The impact of English case TIRF conducted - Research Foundation
*She shared the questions from Questionnaire, numbers

Jun Liu   3rd speaker

*Mentioned data from the typical papers written in TESOL area/Survey

*EFL   ESL as a trend

* English as lingua franca

What is the essence of the future?  Challenge : create an innovating curriculum

Native Intuition to the Language  - Non native Teachers lack, start learning to become native speakers?  No, to become a communicator, our learners need to be users!
Digital natives - Students don’t want text book, they want iphones, they multitask!
Teacher Learning and Development: you are a great teacher today but you can not be tomorrow! Learners Change!  Global Competence, Intercultural competence, how sts can be competent in the workforce
Encourage learners to maximize their learning, digital technology is very important. 
The future of ELT lies on research.

Does our teaching really lead to learning? Jim Scrievener

*Sts are underchallenged, teachers have been doing what is expected: techniques, training but we don’t see learning going on, the reality of learning visible,
teaching going through the motions.
Examples  of  bits and pieces of classes he observed:
*communicative approach is not the only answer, its settled into safe dead end, teacher goes at the speed of the fastest student, models...
sts are trained to perform, teachers are kind of a walking dictionary, teacher asks if sts liked-sts tend to agree, excessive praising, they agree, whatever happens happens …what happened there? 
*avoidance in our teaching,  WHERE'S THE CHALLENGE ?  Push students to do better!
If only sts were given SUPPORT and FEEDBACK instead of meaningless praise!
*Humanism has been misinterpreted, there’s a fear of intervention, a fear of the teacher doing sth to actually make the students learn
make whatever happens happen
*Teachers nowadays feel afraid that the role of teaching, nowadays its only to be nice to the students. we can not abdicate our jobs as a teacher

*Interventionist Teacher : what do I, do in response to what sts say that push students to produce further
key intervention is essencial, listen carefully and choose when to intervene
Examples of Interventions :
questioning is a great way of intervening
let's just check the rule (after having naturally brought up the topic)
to get the engine of the class going,
*Only 2,3 sts dominating sth must be done to spread the balance of participation

*Teachers must be interested where the learning is : the students who don’t know the subject, that's where the learning takes place!
change the clasroom dynamic,  then learning takes place,  our job is to break out of the class for right answers
That's a huge scene change

teachers miss specific learning needs
ONE TO ONE INTERACTIONS WITHIN THE GROUP use the thinking power of every student in the classroom (what a challenge!)
say : Not good enough yet, let's work on that!
Take exercises further, not only correct

*WORDPOOL words at randon,  sts have to reconstruct the sentence, this is explore the lgg, see what sts can do with the language
Am i taking students further in learning or am avoiding it ?
As teachers we must encourage risk, creativity...

His blog:

THE MOBILE TEACHER'S FRIEND OR ENEMY ?    Eric Baber  CambridgeUniversity Press

Youngsters migt be better at manipulating but this is different from having the skills to use the technology, meaningful learning purposes
procurar arquivo POLL EVERYWHERE fazer pesquisa em tempo real

He suggests apps:

WORDS with friends   (requires internet)

scrabble for iphone or ipad ( 2 fones + ipad)

my word book  (for vocabulary, comes with vocabulary packs)

foursquare  (he suggests sts to write a review on the particular revenue)  teens  :-\

trip advisor    for adults   (writing a quick review)

facebook (create a facebook page and sts who have a page keep adding to it as the teacher gives instructions)

Talk to your celebrity (go to your celebrity page and write a post) (digita frase original e passa para written speech)

MENTAL LEXICON - activating learner's braintionary    -  Ricardo Torres

Diference between LEXICON & LEXIS

The Lexical Approach – Michael Lewis

Vocabulary has a major importance

It's an extention to the communicative approach, rather than a new approach

The same lexical item can have different meanings : SEMANTICS

e.g.        I want a WORD with you
            That child never says a WORD

Associated meanings with lexical items
ex  Money = success, power, respect

1 most important info   choice of voc, improvement,
2 identify
3 paraphrase   
4 point author is trying to make
5 words you could not leave out

collocations = words partnerships    words can't come alone!

2 groups : colligation - verb & complement, adjective and prep

We need to  devise activities to help students store and retrieve lexis.


learning disability - neural system  Rotta 2006

dyslexia used to be called WORD BLIND

The gift of dyslexia  - Ronald Davis 2004

ADD #  Dyslexia

* difficulties in reading
* age of 7
* confusion w certain letters
* slow reading aloud
* comprehension problems
* difficulties expressing their points of view
* word-finding difficulties

students should be given strategies,  in some situations they can self-correct
opaque and transparent lgg (concept)
In English lgg teaching:
Lgg learning and inclusion
teachers can soften their path
dyslexic sts will become lgg detectives- Schneider and Crombie 2003)
MULTISENSORING METHOD - Bossa 2007 & Capovilla 2008
SOS simultaneous oral spelling  -  ask child to spell and write
Suggested accommodations in the classroom

Teacher brings material to class, plastic letters, write in the air, read text with the teacher, stories with audio, ask comprehension questions, instructions checking, use of different colours , lower and higher concentration.

Bored students?  Tap into the brain's reward system  Herbert Puchta  neuroscientist 

The brain rewarding system

The idea of reward is can come in all sorts : good grades, positive points, stars
 Look deeper about natural way sts can reward themselves
Discovery on how the brain works - The more we learn the more our brain changes, there's no learning without the brain changing
process of learning affects the brain physically, there are chemical processes, networks, the brain changes through neuronic activities,
Neo cortex is responsible for higher thinking, conscious thoughts and lgg,
When we compare the cortex in different phases of the development it does not change only with time, changes in the brain come with liberation of chemicals which contribute to learning (dopamine, seratonin, adrenalin)
The brain has a pleasure(sends out GO signs) = reward system
and a fear system= (sends stop signals)
when we learn the brain rewards us for understanding, contributing to our survival


The brain reacts to relevant content - meaningful for sts, teacher's role is to get sts to pay attention
Who's in control?  It decides on its own, the brain needs to know its on control
Emotion - positive emotions are part of the learning

 He suggests that we revisit TPR = total physical response to analyse the brain reward system
imitating, carrying out, carrying out jumbled -only this can not be called TPR because there's a missing fase : 
NOVEL INSTRUCTIONS (new instructions which are a combination of lgg they have already seen)  Try to make sense to construct the meaning
teaches about the rewarding system of the brain
the moment of great pleasure of learning sth new is far more meaningful and rewarding for the brain - the brain makes the connection - to engage in a goal oriented task

*present perception
when you make the connection, in form of an idea, this grasping process to achieve all sort of goals, it's a metaphor for "seizing the moment"
research shows that we get satisfaction from physical movement and imagined or antecipated movement too!
*desired future state

The concept of Antecipated Action - How to say more important than what to say,
plan of action based on the past, future based on the result we want to obtain
Children discover things randomly (dare to think differently, think outside the box). Adults tend to think that thinking is reasoning only
Learning based on personal discovery is more meaningful
, discover sth new, think this discovery is our - ownership  we get rewarded by our Brain Reward System
* avoid extrinsic rewards
* sts need to feel in control - I did it myself feeling
* sense of learning process
Learning a foreign lgg is a journey - sts need to decide on their own where they want to travel to (case of more experienced, adv learners)
Somtimes on learning we face a river without a bridge, we have to figure it out on our own. 

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