ELT Malta travel grant winner, Grace Alchini, talks to Sophia Mavridi about her experience presenting, networking, socialising and expanding her professional horizons as one of our chosen speakers for the LTSIG strand.
Hi Grace. It was great to have you on our IATEFL LTSIG strand at 6th ELT Malta. What was your session about and how did it go?
Thanks. It was an honour for me to be there as a travel grant winner and mainly representing our SIG. My talk was about an experience I had for 2 years: synchronous courses. Two groups based in different cities, taking the same course, with the same schedule, with two different teachers, doing the same activities from the same syllabus, and interacting online several times a week, which led students to develop their collaborative skills at a distance.
The delegates attending the talk expressed their interest in the project, and a couple of them told me they felt really engaged in spite of feeling a bit tired, as it was the last session of a very long day!
How do you feel about having been the LTSIG travel grant winner? What opportunities did this grant offer you?
As I mentioned before, I felt honoured to be chosen and happy to know I could share one experience that I found most valuable with other teachers around the world. Also, this gave me the chance to listen to them, and learn about their own work.
What were the conference highlights for you?
The plenary sessions, of course, run by such prestigious people. Having the chance to network with teachers from different countries with the same passion I have. The wonderful treatment we got from ELT Malta staff, who entertained us very generously and even took us on a couple of tours around the island. Representing LTSIG and feeling a member of this family. And on a personal note, having the opportunity to meet again a former classmate of mine, Susana Galante. We were both teacher training college students 30 years ago in Argentina. She’s lived in Israel since then, and I have lived in Mexico for the last 15 years, but this conference brought us together once more.
Finally, as an active IATEFL LTSIG member, why do you think ELT professionals should join our community?
Because it provides you with plenty of opportunities to share what you do, to learn from others, to attend webinars and conferences, to network, to have access to different materials and above all to feel supported by a group of colleagues who love ELT and are willing to be part of a community that fosters growth and collaboration. I feel your professional life can change after joining this group.