July 2010 seminar

The annual pre-season Seminar/Workshop was held on Saturday 3rd July at IELS. Mattew Pulis Street, Sliema

The workshops were as follows:

            First session - 9.30 - 11.00             
Angie Conti: Can dictation really be fun? 
Dictation is often perceived as a dull, boring and, perhaps, pointless exercise. “Old fashioned, boring, time consuming, teacher centred, non-communicative, ineffective” – are some of the criticisms leveled against the use of dictation in class. The aim of this session is to raise awareness of the benefits of dictation. I aim to present it as a versatile activity which practices a number of activities in which dictation can be used as a language learning tool rather than as a means of testing as was traditionally the case.
Alan Marsh: Dialogue Delights*
Dialogues feature prominently in our teaching materials: coursebook dialogues for grammar and lexis, authentic dialogues, recorded dialogues, structured dialogues for speaking, and much, much more. This session looks at a variety of interesting practical techniques – some new, some old, but perhaps unknown or forgotten – for exploiting this rich teaching resource.   (This session is a repeat of the one held after the MATEFL AGM on 21st April 2010.)
Jean Sciberras: Getting Business English Learners to Speak 
Why is speaking important to business people? What fears and problems arise? What makes spoken communication in business special? Which interactive functions do our learners need? During this seminar, we will have a look at some speaking activities and explore how they can be used diagnostically.
Daniel Xerri: Poetry as a language-teaching resource
This workshop examines how teachers can use poetry in order to teach language in an EFL classroom environment.  Participants will explore techniques that can be used in conjunction with various kinds of poems and they will acquire deeper insights into innovative and effective ways of teaching English via such literary material.  This workshop is useful for teachers interested in incorporating literary resources in their language lessons and it raises awareness of strategies they might have never used, as well as providing opportunities to share examples of good practice with
the other participants.
            Second session - 11.30 - 13.15   
Alan Marsh: Grammar, correctness and language evolution: What (not) to teach?
What is ‘Standard English?’ What is ‘correct’ English? How is English changing? This talk / workshop looks at what should / should not be taught or included in language teaching materials. Participants will study examples of language use (some taken from Grammar for English Language Teachers, CUP, 2010).
The core of this session replicates a workshop of the same name given by Martin Parrot at the 2010 IATEFL Conference in Harrogate, UK. It also includes other features that may surprise or even shock you! This session is mainly aimed at teachers with some experience who are interested in thinking about, and observing, language change.
Jean Sciberras: Classroom Mangagement*
Effective classroom management automatically creates a friendly but businesslike classroom atmosphere that is conducive to efficient learning. In this session, for both new and experienced teachers, Jean will discuss and explore simple but fundamental ways of keeping control in class without losing the human rapport so important for communicative learner-centred teaching
Jean Theuma: Mystery and Magic in the Classroom
We all know that students learn better if they are interested in the topic of the lesson. Tap into your students’ natural interest in intrigue and sorcery in order to hold their attention in the classroom. In this session, Jean will be presenting you with some ready made activities for you to take away and use…all of them featuring Magic and Mystery.
* repeat session