Sessions / Teacher Development

10:30 Sun

Virtual Presentations at ELT Conferences #164

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 10:30-11:05 JST

There are many reasons that travel to conferences by presenters may be unwanted or impossible. Such reasons include, but are not limited to, physical disability, lack of financing, political restrictions, and eco-sustainability concerns. Nonetheless, presenting at conferences is often key to academic and professional networking, disseminating one's research and ideas, and career progression. Thus, there arises for some a tension between the inability or lack of desire to travel to present and the perception of the need to present at conferences. Virtual presentations, in which the presenting party is physically remote from the audience, could dissolve, or at least ameliorate, this tension. The study presented here investigates the presentation format policies of more than 200 conferences in the field of English Language Teaching and adjacent fields. The percentage of conferences that permit virtual conferences is reported, and for those conferences that do permit virtual presentations, it is reported whether the format is synchronous, asynchronous, or mixed. This data then informs a discussion about the ethics of travel for conferences in terms of inclusivity/accessibility and sustainability. Some potential benefits of virtual presentations for conferences that do not currently permit them are also discussed.

There are many reasons that travel to conferences by presenters may be unwanted or impossible. Such reasons include, but are not limited to, physical disability, lack of financing, political restrictions, and eco-sustainability concerns. Nonetheless, presenting at conferences is often key to academic and professional networking, disseminating one's research and ideas, and career progression. Thus, there arises for some a tension between the inability or lack of desire to travel to present and the perception of the need to present at conferences. Virtual presentations, in which the presenting party is physically remote from the audience, could dissolve, or at least ameliorate, this ... more

Speaker: Michael Brown

Michael is a lecturer in the English Language Institute at Kanda University of International Studies. His research interests include corpus-assisted discourse analysis, ecolinguistics, and ‘global issues’ in education. He currently ... more

12:00 Sun

Curriculum integration through interdisciplinary collaboration #166

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 12:00-12:35 JST

Interdisciplinary collaboration combines approaches and methods from different disciplines with the intention of improving students’ learning experiences and outcomes (DelliCarpini, 2009). It has been described as having the potential to be a valuable and effective method of professional development (Dove & Honigsfeld, 2010). In this presentation, we describe an ongoing action research project following the cyclical process outlined by Altrichter, Posch and Somekh (1993). We used interdisciplinary collaboration in the form of joint writing and presentation tasks in World History and English Expression (writing) classes in an attempt to increase integration between English and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) courses at a technical college in Japan. We explain the rationale behind this action research project, its initial implementation and expansion to include other tasks and STEM subjects, and our impressions of the successes, failures, and limitations of the project over the 2 years. We conclude with our plans for future iterations of the project and suggestions for fellow teachers to incorporate interdisciplinary collaboration into their courses.

Interdisciplinary collaboration combines approaches and methods from different disciplines with the intention of improving students’ learning experiences and outcomes (DelliCarpini, 2009). It has been described as having the potential to be a valuable and effective method of professional development (Dove & Honigsfeld, 2010). In this presentation, we describe an ongoing action research project following the cyclical process outlined by Altrichter, Posch and Somekh (1993). We used interdisciplinary collaboration in the form of joint writing and presentation tasks in World History and English Expression (writing) classes in an attempt to increase integration between English and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) ... more

Speaker: James Taylor

James Taylor grew up in the Medway Delta in the United Kingdom and holds a BA French and Italian and MA TESOL, both from the University of Leeds. He taught ... more

12:45 Sun

Learning about teaching through foreign language learning #167

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 12:45-13:20 JST

What is the impact of learning a foreign language on EFL teachers? This presentation looks at the advantages and difficulties of EFL teachers learning beginner-level French as a foreign language (FFL). The class was offered to EFL teachers at the same university as a professional development opportunity, and was held twice a week for two semesters. The presenters are the teacher, one of the students, and the class administrator. They examine the results of student questionnaires and interviews which highlight the successes and challenges the students reported from learning FFL. The results indicate that the time commitments are the biggest impediment, while the benefits include French language learning, team bonding and insights into how it is to be a language student. Based on these benefits, the class administrator presents foreign language learning as an approach to EFL teacher development. By exploring the impact of EFL teachers learning FFL, this presentation contributes to the discussion on beliefs about learning, student empathy and faculty development.

What is the impact of learning a foreign language on EFL teachers? This presentation looks at the advantages and difficulties of EFL teachers learning beginner-level French as a foreign language (FFL). The class was offered to EFL teachers at the same university as a professional development opportunity, and was held twice a week for two semesters. The presenters are the teacher, one of the students, and the class administrator. They examine the results of student questionnaires and interviews which highlight the successes and challenges the students reported from learning FFL. The results indicate that the time commitments are the biggest ... more

Speaker: Claire Murray

Claire Murray has taught English in New Zealand and Japan for more than 12 years. Her research interests include learning strategies and vocabulary acquisition

Speaker: Francesco Bolstad

Professor Francesco Bolstad combines his background in biology and economics with his love of education and language as Head of the Department of Clinical English at Nara Medical University. His ... more

Speaker: Paul Mathieson

I am an associate professor in the Department of Clinical English at Nara Medical University. I am the co-ordinator of the nursing English programme at NMU, and I teach both ... more

14:15 Sun

Mindfulness: Making the Most of Class Time #169

Presentation
Finished
Sun, Jun 21, 14:15-14:50 JST

While what we do as teachers is undeniably important, how we do it might be equally important. Keeping focus when a student is disruptive, knowing when to end an activity, and motivating students all take skill. While experience and knowledge of pedagogy can make situations easier to manage, teachers can also benefit by staying in the moment with a heightened sense of awareness. A mindfulness practice can help a teacher achieve a greater level of awareness and improved decision making on class day.

At the same time, there are things we can do to encourage our students to be mindful. Research indicates, for example, that subtle changes in the way teachers give instructions could make students more mindful. Moreover, some schools are introducing mindfulness meditation training for students. Japanese professors based in Hikone have instituted a U.K.-based mindfulness program here in Japan. The “mbsr study group” conducts research and offers mindfulness workshops for teachers in Tokyo and Kansai with an aim to introduce mindfulness in Japan's public schools.

This presentation identifies several approaches to cultivate mindfulness in education and provides brief descriptions of their efficacy. Journal entries written by teachers involved in mindfulness meditation will be shared.

While what we do as teachers is undeniably important, how we do it might be equally important. Keeping focus when a student is disruptive, knowing when to end an activity, and motivating students all take skill. While experience and knowledge of pedagogy can make situations easier to manage, teachers can also benefit by staying in the moment with a heightened sense of awareness. A mindfulness practice can help a teacher achieve a greater level of awareness and improved decision making on class day.

At the same time, there are things we can do to encourage our students to be mindful. ... more

Speaker: John Spiri

John Spiri first came to Japan in 1997 and presently works as an associate professor in the education department at Gifu Shotoku Gakuen University. John was motivated to conduct mindfulness ... more

Speaker: Karl Hedberg

Karl Hedberg works at Shiga University.