By Nikki Fořtová
The afternoon of our PCE promises to be a beehive of activity with many practical concurrent sessions followed by hands on opportunities to try out ideas and talk to our presenters.
The Speakers and their workshops:
Andrew Nye and Anna Lloyd – Cambridge English Language Assessment
The modern teacher is expected to be a digital teacher, able to flip or blend the classroom, and manage virtual environments. The latest tools can help improve student outcomes – if you know how. So, what does a ‘digital teacher’ need? How can we help teachers navigate the digital world and embrace the digital future? Applying the concept of ‘startup thinking’ to teacher development programmes and resources has helped us to design a Digital Framework of teacher competencies, and a new, free training website. In this workshop we’ll demonstrate the tools and resources available on the site and outline what’s next on the development roadmap.
Patricia Reynolds- Teaching Old Dog New Tricks: Collaborative Inquiry
As a rule, educators work in relatively isolated situations. Consequently, there is often a gap of knowledge for these educators as they attempt new techniques and technologies for use in effective teaching. This presentation will discuss this dynamic and how one group of educators formed a collaborative inquiry to learn new tricks for online learning, how and when to flip a classroom in the virtual environment and generally how to support each other throughout the implementation process and beyond. Calling themselves “Teaching Old Dogs New Tricks” this collaborative began an inquiry that has continued over a period of now years. The demonstration will present the ways that these collaboratives can be formed and sustained to support educators as they encounter new technologies and must, once again, teach new tricks with each new iteration.
Language development is one of the least frequently addressed issues in teacher training programs in many non-English speaking contexts. However, being able to communicate in the language one teaches is key to make informed choices about what language items to teach learners and to connect with the rest of the world. Social networks are a rich source of authentic language in context for teachers whose first language is not English. Yet, many teachers do not make the most of them to bridge the gap between the English they know from teaching materials and the English used as a lingua franca by speech communities worldwide. How can we build knowledge from virtual environments in a doable and sustainable way? In this fun, hands-on talk I will show that it only takes a Facebook account and a mobile device for teachers to build their own narratives and to become lifelong language learners.
Katherine Anderton – TeachingTeachers – How to Support Teachers Navigating the World of Technology in Teaching.
Institutes are please to promote that their classes are flipped, blended or technologically ‘cool’. But this often relies on either teachers being required to spend hours (often unpaid) adding technology to their classroom or institutes benefitting from the unpaid enthusiasm of teachers to do so. This talk looks at how free online tools can be used to support teachers through the easy dissemination of material, online training sessions, and collaboration and community building. It particularly looks at the issue of supporting and motivating freelance teachers, who often don’t benefit from social opportunities offered at work or from working with colleagues. As Teaching Support Coordinator: my role is to support and encourage teachers to develop their teaching skills, experiment with technology and receive free training wherever and whenever they need it. Wi-Fi permitting, this talk will contain a live demonstration with the Netherlands.
Technology included: Google Hangouts, DropBox, & Facebook.
Joe Dale – Crowdsourcing the #MFLTwitterati, hashtags, Twitter lists, Padlet and Storify for teacher development and classroom impact.
In his presentation, Joe Dale will showcase different techniques and tools for harnessing the power and potential of Twitter for improving teacher development with concrete classroom examples from practising teachers. He will highlight the ‘MFLTwitterati, a dynamic grassroots community of language teachers from the UK who are passionate about language learning and love sharing their expertise with like-minded colleagues around the globe. Described by some as ‘the best MFL staffroom in the world’, the MFL Twitterati has proved to be an invaluable professional and personal support for many of its members some of whom say they couldn’t now imagine teaching without it!
Maria Diakou & Stella Kourieos – Integrating digital games: engaging young language learners and teacher trainees in innovative learning environments.