Image courtesy of Gary Cycles
Note: This post is my submission for the 2nd ELT Research Blog Carnival. The subject of this carnival is on learner autonomy and is hosted by Lizzie Pinard. If you are interested in knowing more about writing one yourself, please visit her website for more information.
For those who don’t know me, this isn’t the only blog I have. I also have an education technology site that was not really intended to be a education technology blog. Instead, it was meant to be a place where I could post things about language learning and teaching, but somehow evolved into a how-to type of site for those who are new to using technology in the classroom. As a result, I felt that I needed a place strictly for reflecting on what I was learning and doing as a language instructor. Hence, the need for this blog.
Reflection has always been the cornerstone of this site, but not just on what is happening in my day to day life as a teacher. It is also a place where I can share things I am learning about from what I am reading in areas of language education. In fact, my first post was on the integration of education technology and the work of Earl Stevick. Since my time in the MA TESOL program at Trinity Western University, I have been intrigued by the work of Dr. Stevick and his focus on the learner. This leads me to the research article I have chosen for this particular ELT Research Blog Carnival on learner autonomy. Continue reading Controlling
Image courtesy of Maegan Tintari
When I initially proposed the idea of having an ELT Research Blog Carnival to share what we as English language professionals had been learning through academic journal articles, I never really anticipated the response I would get. Deep down, I thought that this idea wouldn’t really catch on and it would die before it ever got started. I was pleasantly surprised, actually shocked would be more apt here, at the response I received from others. I thought I might be too optimistic to think that 2-3 people would join me in the first run, but instead there are a total of seven posts to share! I believe it shows how much ELT instructors care about learning and growing in their field. They are happy to question and reflect on what is happening in their classroom in order to help their students grow. I am proud to be a part of this community of teaching professionals, even if we don’t always feel like we are treated as such. All I can say is thank you.
To get things rolling here, I am going to summarize each of the posts that people have written for this edition of the blog carnival and provide you with links to each of them. Continue reading Commencing
Image courtesy of Calsidyrose
Note: This post is my submission for the 1st ELT Research Blog Carnival. If you are interested in knowing more about writing one yourself, please go to the ELT Research Blog Carnival website.
I was barely 16 and has just moved to the ‘big city’ when I started looking for my first job. With a fist full of resumes and a dress shirt and tie on, I wandered up and down the shopping mall looking for help wanted signs when I spotted a notice in the photo store window. Having grown up around photographers and my dad having a photo shop and studio when I was younger, I thought this would make a great fit. I strode up to the counter and asked for the manager. She came out and I politely introduced myself and handed her my resume. She took a minute to look things over before spinning around and grabbing a semi-professional camera off of the shelf. “Sell it to me,” she exclaimed as she handed the camera to me. I was stunned. In that moment, I was caught completely off guard and didn’t know what to do. I took the camera (which was a new model for me) and looked it over. My brain was whirling. I was panicking. All of those things I had prepared myself for before walking into the shop fell away. I knew about photography and cameras, but that sudden disruption to my plan took me off guard.
Now, think about your students at the moment just before you press play on the class CD that came with your textbook. Are they ready, or are they slipping into panic mode? Do they know what is expected of them or are they just left to figure things out as they go along? Compound the problem by making the listening a high-stakes test such as an exit exam. How do you think they feel now? Continue reading Preparing
Image courtesy of Alexander Baxevanis
Note: This is in response to the post I did yesterday about the ELT Research Blog Carnival. Some of you asked about another option rather than blogging since some of you don’t blog. I wanted to respond to that and to provide some options. Also, I recently read a post by Rose Bard about her blogging experience. You can read it here. I also read a post by Vicky Loras about PD and blogging. You can read it here.
In January 2012, I made a resolution that I was going to start a blog as well as join Twitter as a way of sharing what I was learning and to learn from other ELT professionals. Knowing how successful resolutions tend to be, I wasn’t expecting much out of it, but I was at least willing to make an effort to try and make it work. I was pleasantly surprised (and still am) that so many people would be open to reading, commenting, and sharing what I wrote. I was also able to meet some amazing people who have added to my growth as a teacher. With the amount of information that was out there, I never expected to be noticed. All of that is great, but what does blogging do for me and for those I keep in touch with? Here are some reasons to blog as a teaching professional: Continue reading Blogging
Image courtesy of Theis Kofoed Hjorth
For those who have been reading my posts over the past few weeks or following me on Twitter, you are probably aware that I am working on reading more academic journal articles in order to grow as a professional. In the course of sharing that in my posts and tweets, I have had some encouraging comments from others that they are also interested in reading research articles and discussing it with one another. The idea of an article discussion group was mentioned by Phil Chappell where colleagues could get together and share what they have been reading. I wondered how that could work online with people getting together from all over the world. Here are some of the ideas I pondered and what I eventually settled on. Continue reading Inviting