EFLIS Newsletter

EFLIS News, Volume 7:3 (October 2007)

by User Not Found | 11/07/2011
In This Issue...
  • Leadership Updates
    • Letter From the Chair
    • Message From the Coeditors
  • Articles
    • Teamwork: There is Nothing Better!
    • Teaching Tolerance Through English
    • Tolerance: Shall We Teach It?
    • Teaching English in Europe—TESOL Affiliates Near You
  • Announcements and Information
    • TESOL Awards and Grants for EFL Professionals
    • About This Community

Leadership Updates Letter From the Chair

Sally Harris, ssharris@nwc.edu

Dear Colleagues,

I am asking you to consider nominating yourself or someone else (who has given permission to you to do so) for the open position of chair-elect of the EFLIS. By the time our current EFLIS chair-elect, Mr. Ke Xu, becomes the new chair at TESOL 2008 in New York City, we must have nominated his successor. It is time to be thinking about who that should be.

When I wrote last time (in the June 2007 newsletter), I mentioned that TESOL is continuously working at making us all better connected electronically. There are e-lists, e-newsletters, e-publications, online courses, and so on, accessible from the TESOL main web page. Last year, the EFLIS inaugurated electronic balloting for the position of chair elect.

Not everything can be done electronically, however. Being chair-elect or chair of an interest section still requires some "real-time" connection—being physically present at two successive conventions. Most of the real work, however, is done by e-mail or online. You can be chair no matter where in the world you are, as long as you can attend the convention before and during your tenure as chair.

If you yourself or someone you know can commit to being present at TESOL 2008 and TESOL 2009, I strongly encourage you to consider nominating this person for chair-elect.

The EFLIS chair-elect spends a year learning what the chair does. He or she also usually has a hand in organizing Discussion Group sessions for the upcoming conference.

Perhaps you are unfamiliar with how much the creation of each conference relies on the activities of the interest section chairs. The EFLIS chair has the responsibility of taking a large role in creating the upcoming conference because the EFLIS is one of the largest ISs. The crucial duties of an IS chair include

  • (April) Finding volunteer reviewers who are willing to read and rank 15-plus proposals
  • (April/May) Entering their contact data into the electronic software database so that they can receive their assigned proposals online
  • (May/June) Tracking the reviewers' progress-toward-the-deadline
  • (July/August) Determining which ranked proposals are above/below the cut-off
  • (July/August) Communicating to TESOL's Central Office which proposals have been accepted for presentation at the upcoming convention

As I said last time, we live in an electronically enhanced world. It's enabled TESOL to rely on the work of volunteers around the world to create the wonderful TESOL annual conventions. Please consider taking a larger role in this enterprise.

And, if you reviewed proposals for the EFLIS this year, my special thanks to you.

Keep in touch,
Sally


Message From the Coeditors

Gabriela Kleckova, gabriela_kleckova@yahoo.com and Karin Heiringhoff, mail@tikanti.net

At a brief discussion about the EFLIS newsletter at the TESOL convention in Seattle, it was suggested that upcoming issues of the newsletter focus on different regions around the world. This focus should allow a more thorough presentation of various teaching contexts and benefit from the contacts the local editors have in the region. The current issue of Global Neighbors is the first issue that focuses on a specific region in the world. Specifically, it is dedicated to ESOL issues and events in Europe. Although not very extensive, we believe that the current issue provides readers with insights into some of the activities of EFL professionals in Europe. The overview of TESOL affiliate organizations in Europe aims to add a wider perspective that may raise the awareness of the many TESOL activities taking place in Europe alone. With this first European issue of the EFLIS Newsletter we hope to set the ball rolling for further future newsletters that focus on issues relevant to readers in Europe.

For now we wish everybody an enjoyable read of a European issue which, as you may find, reflects the theme of tolerance and cooperation—and thus strangely happens to fit the concept of Europe itself, too. Should readers wish to comment on any of the featured articles or contribute to a future issue themselves, they are most welcome to contact us.


Kindest regards,

Gabriela and Karin



Articles Teamwork: There is Nothing Better!

Marianne Raynaud, marianne@qualitytime-esl.com , former professor at Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble, France

The one principle that has helped me the most in my career as head of the language department at three different French engineering schools is "teamwork." The success of the both the 3-year and the 2-year compulsory ESL university courses that I elaborated over the years with different colleagues has been largely based each time on our efforts to work together as a team.

Extensive Collaboration

Collaboration has extended far, all the way to a core curriculum for each year of study, the same activities scheduled the same week for all the groups of each year, the same homework, the same number of tutorials and classroom presentations, the same intensive pair work, and even the same exams. What revolutionized the English program in each of the different institutes of higher learning was the fact that we approached our course the same way the science professors did with theirs. In other words we started with an explicit syllabus printed in our booklets. We explained the specific requirements needed to pass the course and we put together a blend of English for international communication with English for special purposes. We devised practicals to apply what had been learned in lab and oral activities intended to enhance creativity. Most of the course was elaborated based on a survey we had done with our students about their real needs. They all said that the priority should be "oral expression."

The Students' Reaction to the Program

As soon as we started setting up a core curriculum or mutual program the students stopped criticizing the course and even did all the homework we assigned. We introduced tutorials or one-to-one sessions during the lab hour and the students really appreciated this opportunity to be alone with their teacher. All the teachers had tutorials and used the exercises for intensive pair work we had elaborated together. There was a synergy that we had never experienced when each teacher just did his or her own thing. Also, the students liked the idea of everyone taking the same exams just as they did in the other subjects. Before I was appointed to the Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble and took over as head of department, exams were given by individual teachers based solely on their own courses. Consequently, students would try to get into the lower levels to have easier exams and get better grades. With the "common exams" everyone strove to get into the highest groups and worked very hard to get the best results. Of course we elaborated exams that allowed everyone to show what they had accomplished. At the end of the year we would have a big film festival uniting all the students and their teachers. The students saw the films they had all written, directed, and produced on their own in groups of 5 or 6 outside of class with help of course from their teachers, who corrected the English of their scenarios.

Advantages for the Students

Teachers reading this may think, "How boring! With everyone doing the same thing the same week what is there in this for me the teacher?" But I can assure you intense collaboration leads to a totally different ambiance and is extremely motivating for both student and teacher alike.

Here are some of the advantages: Students can work out of class with friends from different groups; students look forward to activities that others have told them about; students often tell others about what they did and what they said in their respective groups; students all get the same beautiful workbooks put together by the team of teachers (work by the students themselves is published in these workbooks, which makes them even more precious); students no longer evaluate the individual teacher—instead they talk about the value of "the course"; and students think it is fair that all students take the same exam and are graded according to the same criteria by a group of teachers and not only by one single teacher.

Organizing the Collaboration

How does this teacher collaboration work? We have meetings in which colleagues submit their best activities and explain to the others how they are to be used. Then we program these activities and make up a schedule depending on how many class hours we have during a term—generally between 18 and 26 hours. For each 2-hour slot, for instance, we determine what will be the exercises for the lab hour and what activities we will use for the hour in the audiovisual room. We make sure that there is enough time for all these exercises and activities. We have noticed though that students work much faster and get through many more exercises and activities if there is a set program. We also decide on the number of presentations the students will make either alone (tutorials) or in front of the class (talks, debates, seminars, etc.). As coordinator I generally put together the workbooks from the documents my colleagues send in, and I make up the tapes for the lab hour. Of course this takes time, but in actual fact we change—that is, update—only about 10% of the course every year; and we look for exercises or activities that are timeless.

Advantages for the Teachers

As for teachers they find numerous advantages from working as a team. They do not have to enumerate the homework at the end of the class because an assignment page in the booklets explains everything; students do not "compare" teachers, they speak only of "the course"; teachers know precisely what the team expects from them (they have elaborated the course together) and thus they spend far less time preparing than they did when they worked alone; and teachers feel more confident because they know the chosen activities have worked for others and that they can always ask colleagues for advice. Because we are a team we can switch groups in the middle of the year, and if ever we have a problem with a student it is easy to discuss what to do with the others and with the head of department. Moreover, tests are elaborated together. Each teacher submits one part of the test and then corrects only that part. Students of course take the written exams (grammar, vocabulary, listening comprehension) the same day all together in an auditorium. We work very hard putting together the different parts, but we need only one version of the written exam. Only the oral "expression" is evaluated by individual teachers, but then again there is a standard grid of questions and from that grid we make up 8 or 10 versions that all the teachers use. Finally, we often compare our evaluation criteria to make sure we are not being too subjective. And it is extremely enjoyable to share experiences from class time or during exams with colleagues. Our collaboration tends to make us more sociable and open to others. And as a "team" we have a very strong position both as regards our students and in the juries at the end of the year where the professors in all the subjects decide together on the final marks we give our students.

Teamwork Is the Best Policy

All in all, I can say that what you might lose in the way of "freedom" as a teacher to do as you please in your class is compensated at least five times over by the response of your students and your colleagues. Discipline is no longer a problem, nor is motivation. I admit that it is time-consuming particularly in the beginning to put together a mutual program, but in the long run there are only advantages. Long live teamwork!


Teaching Tolerance Through English

Preface by Gabriela Kleckova, gabriela_kleckova@yahoo.com

In the middle of August, I had the opportunity to visit a Teaching Tolerance Through English (TTTE) summer camp in a little town called Balatonlelle on Lake Balaton in Hungary. This 2-week camp was sponsored by the Regional English Language Office (RELO) of the Embassy of the United States of America in Budapest with support from U.S. embassies of participating countries and management support from the Foundation for Democratic Youth (DIA) in Budapest. It was very different from any camp I had been to or seen before. It is almost impossible to put into writing what it was like to be in the midst of seventy 12- to 14-year old students and 15 teachers from Hungary, Romania, Croatia, Kosovo, Serbia, and Montenegro, who were, along with two academic specialists from the United States, Mary Lou McCloskey and Lydia Stack, learning about cultures, tolerance, democratic values, human rights, and conflict resolution through English as well as doing the typical summer camp activities: sports, crafts, dance, songs, and games organized by Camp Director Kathleen Fries and 8 counselors (college students from Hungary, Slovenia, and the United States). The camp, first held in the summer of 2006, was the brainchild of Craig Dicker, former RELO in Budapest, now RELO in Ankara, Turkey.

The typical day at the camp consisted of a variety of educational and recreational activities. In the mornings, teachers attended workshops on approaches and techniques to teaching tolerance through English and prepared their classes. While teachers were exploring new ways of teaching, the students were doing camp activities with camp counselors. After lunch, pairs of teachers team-taught a 2-hour content-based English Through Tolerance class to groups of 10 students, applying the knowledge and skills from their morning workshops. After this, it was time for summer camp activities and sports again. Evenings were dedicated to more activities, which allowed students to build up international friendships while planning and performing skits and songs, playing various games, or watching and discussing films. I spent about 3 days at the camp as a visitor there. To better describe the camp and its impact on people's lives, I asked some of the teachers to reflect on and write up their experiences with the camp. Here are their stories.

To learn more about the camp, you can go to http://ttte2.blogspot.com/, http://teentolerance.pbwiki.com/, or http://www.mlmcc.com/ (click on "Projects"). To watch a video from the camp in 2006, visit http://stream.state.gov/streamvol/sites/budapest/movies/Balatonlelle.mp4 .

Teaching Tolerance Through English With Stories in a Summer Camp in Balatonlelle
Bernadett Bózsa, bozsabernadett@freemail.hu , Mecsekaljai Ovoda, Altalanos Iskola es Kozepiskola, Pecs, Hungary

I had never been to any international camps before, and it was really a great opportunity for me to work with teachers and students from six different countries for 2 weeks on the topic of tolerance while developing our English knowledge.

The aim of the camp was to get children together especially from multicultural countries and increase tolerance among children who are different in culture, nationality, ethnic origin, and religion.

Under the guidance of Lydia Stack and Mary Lou McCloskey, we learned about new approaches to teaching tolerance and English together. In the mornings we had a 2-hour session during which we were introduced to a new topic each day, such as Community Development; Human Rights: Respecting Self, Respecting Others; Speaking Up Against Bigotry; Stop the Hate and Bullying; Conflict Resolution; and Mediation. In the afternoons, we had to teach children in mixed international groups based on the morning lessons.

In the afternoons we could try out the new strategies we learned during the lessons. Each study group worked with two teachers, who prepared for and led the lessons together. This pair teaching was a great experience for me, because we could share ideas while preparing and help each other during the lessons, making the whole lesson dynamic and exciting both for the children and for ourselves.

The children had to communicate in English, as the target language was English, and because they were a mixed nationality group, English was the only way they could understand each other. They used the language for real purposes as they were supported with real context. Their English knowledge, vocabulary, and attitude developed over the 2 weeks, according to a test that they sat for both at the beginning and at the end of the camp.

One of my favourite tasks was the Reader's Theatre. It was based on a short story, a folktale, or any other kind of story, whether it was from the given literature or something that the group found. Each group chose a story and first had to rewrite it for a presentation. The students had to write the script, make costumes, and practice for the show. The preparation and rehearsals were led by us, the teachers. It was amazing how the children worked together and gave ideas to each other about what to say and how to do things. My group, the "green group," prepared "The Little Pork Cheese," a well-known Hungarian folktale in which the angry pork cheese eats up the whole family and when it gets too heavy it rolls down from the attic and eats up everybody it meets in the village. This folktale was connected to the topic of bullying and the children could identify themselves with the bully and the bullied characters. One of the boys was the little pork cheese and he decided to become angrier by the end of the story to show his power in the role of the bully.

The great benefit of this camp was the linguistic development for both the children and the teachers and learning about tolerance, and other nations' cultures, through taking part in brilliant activities while spending 2 weeks on Lake Balaton.

Impressions of TTTE Camp
Rodica Schwetter, rodicaschwetter@yahoo.com , Secondary School nr 8, Brasov, Romania

I don't know what to start with in trying to describe the TTTE camp. Should I start with the wonderful concepts of tolerance, friendship, observance of human rights, desegregation, respect of self, respect of others, and peace, which are guidelines for our everyday behavior at the camp and topics we share in our lessons as well? Or should I start by saying "Thank you" to each member of the staff, beginning with experts, teachers, and counselors, for being so committed to their work and for doing it so well? Or maybe I should start by saying that I'm proud to be a teacher, to be at this camp and become more aware by each day that we make a difference? On second thought, perhaps I should start by telling everyone about the peaceful pink and yellow sunset over Lake Balaton with its swans floating silently like tokens of peace.

About Friendship
Daniela Ianole, todi79@yahoo.com , George Calinescu High School, Constanta, Romania

As a teacher who took part in the program I can say that this camp has offered me multiple perspectives, different approaches to class problems, and numerous strategies to get the students involved. Above all, I discovered how English can be successfully used to overcome obstacles, to resolve conflicts, and to accept differences. I discovered new interpretations of things I thought I knew so well. This is unquestionably how all of us (teachers) felt 2 days after the camp finished, while recalling the events and looking through the beautiful books we got.

Wonderful things have also been achieved as far as the younger participants are concerned. I am particularly happy for my students who had the chance to be there, in a completely new universe, and to learn so much about human values, to be aware of them.

In this new universe people who anywhere else would have seen each other as strangers or even enemies gained the power to cross barriers, to destroy prejudice, and to see each other as friends—as real friends, who didn't want to part and cried the whole night before leaving for home (anyone who was there knows that these are not only words). They took small steps to build their relations in the beginning, but soon these relations became unbreakable. The first common ground was English, which helped them to discover millions of other common things and to realize that children are the same, no matter how different they are. More important, they will keep these friendships forever and will tell about them to others, who haven't got out of their small universe yet.

There are many things to say, many people to mention, so friendly and warm. I feel lucky I met them. The 2 weeks spent in that wonderland of Hungary gave us all great intellectual excitement, great pleasure, everlasting memories and impressions, and sadness when it was over. So, we'll have to keep the flame burning.

Recipe
Nada Cicic, nadacicic@verat.net , Vladimir Peric-Valter School, Prijepolje, Serbia

Ingredients:
15 freshly educated teachers
70 carefully selected students
Spices: staff, including Gergo Santha (U.S. Embassy) and Hayo De Vries (DIA)

Steps:
Preheat the teachers in house #4 for 2 hours ( morning workshop ). Then stir them up with a box full of books (if possible, make the box yourself and if not, ask Jim Stack to do it for you). Let the teachers be cooked in their own sweat for 1 hour ( class preparation ). If you like, you can add the following spices: counselors, kitchen staff, and visitors. Put them all in the same pot. To keep them hot, mix them up at lunch. If it is not enough, ask Mary Lou and Lydia for advice. Now, the meal is ready to be served exactly at 1:30 p.m. ( English classes ). Serve it while hot to students who are longing to try it.

Dessert:
Nights off, skits, recreational activities

Strategies
Measure a large bowl of recreation activities, add half a cup of carefully designed strategies, put them all together, and bake them according to Kathleen's ( camp director's ) instructions till they become perfect.

Dressing
Skits or national dances. Serve them hot on nights off.


Tolerance: Shall We Teach It?

Leonora Molnar, sandor@EUnet.yu , Primary School "Nikola Djurkovic," Feketic, Serbia

The answer is simple and straightforward: Yes! Teaching tolerance is not about teaching grammar structures or being fixed in different methodological patterns. Teaching tolerance is about teaching friendship among teenagers and learning how to deal with different commonplace ethnic issues that one can very easily ignore. At first all I knew about tolerance was maybe just a partial definition that in my mind sounded like "not getting so easily angry at people" but in fact tolerance means much more than that. Teaching for peace and tolerance addresses history, prejudice, and reconstruction in the societies and communities. It needs open-minded, active learners who will develop a reconstructed antiracist identity through cooperative learning, critical thinking, and problem solving while using multicultural materials and conflict resolution skills.

How can we do it? Teachers need to engage students in a dialogue not only about the subject content but also about the topics that interest students, not forgetting the aspects of the multicultural and multivoiced setting they are living in. Consequently, these new roles of teachers require new roles from learners. Students need to take greater responsibility for their own learning. Students need to be more personally engaged and active. Students need to bring forth their personal experience and backgrounds and enrich those backgrounds and grow from that base. The student role in the new, globalized, tolerant, and cross-cultural classroom is dramatically different than it is in a more traditional setting.

After attending the Teaching Tolerance Through English (TTTE) camp in 2006, I decided to pursue some of the tolerance issues through extracurricular activities for students at my school. An after-school English Club was formed in the Primary School "Nikola Djurkovic" in Feketic, Serbia. The members of the Club were both Serbian and Hungarian pupils and they used English as the language of their communication. The program of the Club included themes from the TTTE camp (human rights, discrimination, conflict resolution, and bullying) and the historic-cultural background of the English-speaking countries. The students were involved in various activities such as games, role plays, and dramatizations (for conflict resolution or historic events), poster-making sessions (for presentations about important personalities such as Rosa Parks or Henry VIII), discussions (about holidays or basic human rights), writing short compositions or singing songs ("You can get it if you really want" by Jimmy Cliff).

The students realized that coming from different ethnic backgrounds did not make them better or worse than the others. They gradually opened up and by the end of the school year they became familiar with the traditions and customs of the other cultures. They became more respectful and tolerant of other cultures. They realized that they could practice interethnic understanding without giving up their own beliefs and customs. These young people are global citizens: They live, think, and act for a multilingual and multicultural society.

In addition to the English Club activity, my school took part in the International Cross-Border Drama Exchange Project involving 12 students and 3 teachers from Serbia and the same number of students and teachers from Romania. The first step of the Cross-Border Drama Exchange Project was to get the students acquainted with the idea of the project through workshops in their home schools. The next step was the gathering of the 24 students and their 6 teachers in Timisoara, Romania, where the students wrote the script of their future play using the Reader's Theatre Method. The students based their play on gender issues, on the differences between men and women. Gradually, they came to the conclusion that a member of one sex is not "better" than a member of the other sex. The play conveyed the message of "together is better," which can be achieved with tolerance and understanding. The message was universal; "together is better" is the base for interethnic and cross-cultural understanding, multiculturalism, and multilingualism. The third step of the project was the finalization and rehearsal of the play by everyone in Subotica, Serbia. The last step of the project was the grand premiere of the play in Budapest, Hungary. The students performed in front of an audience made up of peers, English language teachers, and other guests in the American International School and in the Karinthy Frigyes Dual Language High School in Budapest. The play was a great success and proved the benefits of involving teenagers in activities addressing contemporary issues such as tolerance, discrimination, or interethnic understanding.

It is clear that a teaching practice such as this will face challenges and constraints when introduced to the teachers and learners for the first time. Participants may need time to get used to it and understand its positive effects and values. However, as a result, participants in the changing practice will develop "a comprehensive respect for diversity in time and space and for civilizations, lifestyles and cultural traditions" (Bourdieu, 1999, p. 252) with new patterns of discourse, learning, and self-development.

Reference
Bourdieu, P. (1999). Principles for reflecting on the curriculum. In B. Moon & P. Murphy (Eds.), Curriculum in context (3rd ed.; pp. 249-257). London: Paul Chapman Publishing Ltd.


Teaching English in Europe—TESOL Affiliates Near You

Compiled and written by Karin Heiringhoff, mail@tikanti.net

Nowadays professional development opportunities within TESOL are manifold and take place across geographical, cultural, and linguistic boundaries. So if you are considering joining a TESOL affiliate near you, you may want to stretch the term near by just a bit: A lot of affiliates in Europe are welcoming potential members from within the same country as well as other European countries. So why not take a look at TESOL organizations in other parts of the world, too?

Generally all TESOL affiliates offer their members professional development opportunities of some sort and encourage an exchange of information on pedagogical themes such as research, books, and materials. The following overview aims to give a brief insight into the existing TESOL affiliates in Europe. Individual affiliates are welcome to submit further information on their organization themselves, in order to paint a clearer picture. This additional information could then be featured in the next EFLIS Newsletter edition for Europe.

TESOL affiliates in Europe are as follows:

  • Associacao Portuguesa de Professores de Ingles (APPI), Portugal
  • Association of Teachers of English of the Czech Republic (ATECR), Czech Republic
  • Croatian Association of Teachers of English (HUPE), Croatia
  • English Language Teachers' Association (ELTA), Serbia
  • National Association of Language Development in the Curriculum (NALDIC), England
  • Slovak Association of Teachers of English (SAUA/SATE), Slovakia
  • Sweden Modern Language Society (LMS), Sweden
  • TESOL France, France
  • TESOL Greece, Greece
  • TESOL Italy, Italy
  • TESOL Macedonia-Thrace, Northern Greece
  • TESOL Spain, Spain
  • Verband Englisch in Deutschland (EID; part of the GMF), Germany

Associacao Portuguesa de Professores de Ingles (APPI), Portugal
http://www.appi.pt (also available in English soon)

Established in 1985, APPI has over 1,300 members and is aimed at all EFL teachers from preschool to university level. It regularly holds congresses, seminars, and workshops, and its online platform provides rich teacher-training resources, classroom resources, information on assessment, institutional resources, and online discussion opportunities.

APPI's main goals are to
- contribute to the improvement of EFL learning in the Portuguese education system
- encourage the exchange of ideas, experiences, and projects among sister language associations in Portugal and abroad
- organize an annual conference and regional seminars in areas away from the capital city where APPI is based
- cooperate with the Ministry of Education (ME) in the establishment of English language policies

APPI achieves these goals by
- organizing teacher-training courses throughout the year and the country
- making up teams of teachers to write syllabi and develop teaching materials
- organizing summer teacher courses funded by Comenius for Portuguese teachers of English at U.K. and Irish institutions
- sitting on ME's work groups and councils to advise on foreign language policies.

Upcoming Events:

22nd APPI Annual Conference in Aveiro (northwestern part of Portugal), April 24-26, 2008

Association of Teachers of English of the Czech Republic (ATECR), Czech Republic
http://www.atecr.cz (in English)

Founded in 1990, membership in ATECR is open to all persons teaching English at all kinds of schools and other institutions, state or private, as well as freelance teachers of any nationality working in the Czech Republic.

ATECR's main aims are to
- improve the quality of English teaching in Czech schools
- enable teachers to express freely their views in relation to the teaching of English and protect their interests against interference from higher authorities
- offer professional cooperation with TV and radio in the design and production of teaching programs for schools at both teacher and pupil level
- promote exchange visits, working parties, and study exchanges between Czech teachers of English and teachers of English from other countries (fromhttp://www.atecr.cz/about_us.php)

Its service for members includes
- biennial national and regional conferences, workshops, and lectures featuring presentations by ELT professionals and sessions of practical and theoretical interest to English teachers
- regional centers providing access to professional literature and facilitating contact between teachers in the given region
- ATECR lending libraries with books and audio and video material
- cooperation with the Ministry of Education and other governmental and nongovernmental educational bodies in order to represent the interests of English teachers

Upcoming Events:

6th International and 10th National ATECR Conference in Ceske Budejovice, September 2008.

Croatian Association of Teachers of English (HUPE), Croatia
http://www.hupe.hr/index.php (in English)

Set up in 1992, HUPE undertakes a range of activities to meet its members' interests and needs. Membership is open to anybody involved with ELT. It is based at the British Council in Zagreb and aims to

- provide a consultative service for language teachers
- form Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
- organize lectures, meetings, workshops, study groups, and conferences
- establish a Teacher Training Center and a Resource Library
- establish regional branches
- represent language teachers in dealing with government and other official bodies on professional matters (http://www.hupe.hr/about.php)

Through its newsletter, web page, and a HUPE Yahoogroup, the organization promotes an exchange of information and allows distant and local members alike to benefit from its services.

Recent Events:

IATEFL TEA SIG Conference, "The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL): Benefits and Limitations," on October 19-20, 2007 in Opatija. For more information visit www.teasig.com.

English Language Teachers' Association (ELTA), Serbia
http://www.elta.org.yu (in English)

ELTA is based at Belgrade and supported by the Ministry of Education and Sports of the Republic of Serbia, the U.S. Embassy, and the British Council. It consists of almost 800 members. Teachers at all levels of education, retired teachers, and students of English, as well as representatives of schools and institutions and all members of the general public interested in the development of the profession are welcome to join ELTA.

Its main goals are to
- provide opportunities for networking and professional development
- establish and maintain high-quality standards of English language teaching in Serbia

ELTA achieves this by
- organizing events for professional development (workshops; seminars; roundtables; local, regional, and international conferences)
- establishing contacts and cooperation with relevant local, regional, and international associations and institutions
- keeping its members well informed about latest trends and developments in the profession via mailing lists, the ELTA Newsletter, and its online presence.

Upcoming Events:

The Annual International ELTA Conference , May 30-June 1, 2008.

National Association of Language Development in the Curriculum (NALDIC), England
http://www.naldic.org.uk

NALDIC was inaugurated in 1993 and is the U.K. professional body for all those interested in raising the educational achievement of bilingual students who study English as an additional language. Membership is open to anyone professionally interested in working with pupils who study English as an additional language.

NALDIC's main aims are to
- support bilingualism
- raise the achievement of ethnic minority learners
- promote a development and an understanding of this field of education
- draw on the thinking and practice of colleagues working with bilingual learners of all ages, both nationally and internationally (from www.naldic.org.uk)

NALDIC publishes books, papers, and a quarterly for its members; hosts regional and national events and conferences; disseminates information through regional and special interest groups; and works with government agencies and other professional organizations.

Recent & Upcoming Events:

Please refer to http://www.naldic.org.uk/docs/events/events_upcoming.cfm for more information.

Conference on Raising Achievement of Somali Pupils in Schools on October 16, 2007, in Brixton Hill

15th NALDIC Annual Conference , A Pedagogy for Diversity, on November 17, 2007, at Coventry University

Slovak Association of Teachers of English (SAUA/SATE), Slovakia
http://www.saua-sate.sk (partly in English)

The Slovak Association of Teachers of English was formed in 1991. Its members are professionals teaching English at all educational levels.

SAUA/SATE's aim is to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas through conferences, seminars, and workshops. These are announced in a newsletter, via its Web site, or through invitations.

Sweden Modern Language Society (LMS), Sweden
http://www.lms-riks.se (in Swedish)

Established in 1938, LMS has a membership of 4,500 language teachers from all educational levels within the Swedish school system. There are 25 regional LMS offices across the country. The regional offices arrange in-service training for language teachers such as lectures, seminars, and exhibitions. Each spring LMS holds its annual conference (LMS Språkdagar) with an attendance of about 1,000 language teachers. LMS publishes two journals: Lingua and Modern Languages (Moderna Språk)

Upcoming Events:

Mobikid European Conference on October 26, 2007, in Stockholm

TESOL France , France
http://www.tesol-france.org (in English)

TESOL France was established in 1981 and celebrated its 25th anniversary last year. In 2006-07 its membership was around 170 individuals and six teaching and training organizations. Most members work in the continuing education and university sectors and are native English speakers. TESOL France would like to encourage more nonnative speakers and those working in the French Primary sector to join its association, too. Membership is open to anyone involved in the teaching of English as a foreign language in France or in other European countries.

TESOL France regularly organizes events such as workshops, seminars, and its annual colloquium.

Recent & Upcoming Events:

All events are open to members and nonmembers alike.

TESOL Workshop, "Using Drama in the Classroom," on October 20, 2007, in Paris

TESOL BESIG Roundtable, "English for the Telephone," on November 10, 2007, in La Défense, Paris

The Annual Colloquium, "So to Speak: Developing Spoken Communication Skills," November 30-December 1, 2007, in Paris

TESOL Greece , Greece
http://www.tesolgreece.com (in English)

TESOL Greece has about 600 members. Membership is open to anybody involved with teaching English in Greece. Its main aims are to provide a forum for members to share and exchange ideas and socialize with colleagues from Greece and abroad; to organize conventions, presentations, talks, and workshops by members and professionals of national and international repute; and to inform aspiring as well as experienced teachers of opportunities for professional advancement and training.

Upcoming Events:

Big SIG Day, "ESP/EAP Teaching and Assessment: Steps Forward," November 4, 2007, in Athens

TESOL Italy , Italy
http://www.tesol.it (in English)

TESOL Italy was founded in 1975 and has over 600 members. It is open to all teachers of English in Italy and abroad. Since 2006 TESOL Italy has also been working on the Teacher Development Project for Primary School Teachers (Progetto per la formazione degli insegnanti della scuola primaria). It organizes teacher development seminars and workshops as well as an annual convention. TESOL Italy's values are

- professionalism in language education
- individual language rights
- accessible, high-quality education
- collaboration in a global community
- interaction of research and reflective practice for educational improvement
- respect for diversity and multiculturalism (from www.tesol.it)

Upcoming Events:

Workshop, "Cooperative Learning Workshop for English Teachers," on October 22, 2007, in Rome

TESOL Italy's 32nd National Convention, "Primary Issues - Challenges and Changes in the Classroom, Language and Content, Corpus Linguistics and ELT, Lifelong Learning," November 30-December 1, 2007, in Rome

TESOL Macedonia-Thrace , Northern Greece
http://www.tesolmacthrace.org (in English)

TESOL Macedonia-Thrace was formed in 1993. It regards its role as two-fold: to explore the reality of how teaching actually is in the classrooms in Greece on the one hand, and to consider how teaching could be improved on the other hand. Its membership comprises Greek, British, American, Australian, and Canadian teachers as well as prospective English teachers. At present TESOL Macedonia-Thrace has about 600 active members.

Its aims are to

- empower teachers to share information and develop a strong and confident voice regarding the future of the ELT sector
- provide the opportunity for Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) to come into contact with more experienced colleagues at a range of formal and informal levels
- ensure that Greece is firmly on the global ELT map, cooperating with other professionals and organizations in other countries with goals similar to its own
- encourage Greek ELT practitioners and academics to speak and publish internationally about the specifics of the Greek culture of learning (fromwww.tesolmacthrace.org)

Recent Events:

TESOL Macedonia Thrace, Northern Greece 15th Annual Convention, "New Waves on the Tides of ELT," October 12-14, 2007, in Thessaloniki

TESOL Spain , Spain
http://www.tesol-spain.org (in English)

TESOL Spain was founded in 1977. Its members come from all sectors and regions of English language teaching in the country. Mediating between national and international development, TESOL Spain keeps its members abreast of current concerns with the aim of improving the quality and effectiveness of language teaching at the regional and the national level in Spain.

Upcoming Events :

Symposium "New Challenges in Foreign Language Education," October 18-20, 2007, in Lleida

Verband Englisch in Deutschland (EID; part of the GMF), Germany
http://www.gmf.cc/html/englisch.html (in German)

The Gesamtverband Moderne Fremdsprachen (GMF; "Association of Modern Foreign Languages") was established in 2006 and has about 10,000 members. It is composed of several modern foreign language sections, one of them being the English language section, EID. The previous association, Fachverband Moderne Fremdsprachen (FMF), will cease existing in 2010.

The EID offers an "integrative membership," meaning that members of EID are automatically also members of GMF. It is aimed at professionals involved with teaching English at all levels.

EID aims to
- contribute to professional development through a range of events
- promote intercultural exchange
- cooperate with other language sections within GMF

Upcoming Events:

The Annual Congress of the GMF (Jahreskongress Gesamtverband Moderne Fremdsprachen), March 27-29, 2008, in Leipzig



Announcements and Information TESOL Awards and Grants for EFL Professionals

TESOL annually offers TESOL awards and grants to TESOL members. Some of these awards are specific to EFL professionals. We would like to encourage members of the EFLIS to closely examine the nomination criteria for the following award and consider applying.

TESOL/TEFL Travel Grant
The recipient of this grant receives travel and basic expenses not to exceed US$2,500 to attend a TESOL convention. If you are a member of TESOL and an EFL teacher, a teacher trainer, or a supervisor and have at least 5 years working experience in a non-English-speaking context, you are eligible to apply. You are especially encouraged to apply if you haven't attended a TESOL convention yet.
The deadline for applications is November 1, 2007.
To learn more, go to http://www.tesol.org/s_tesol/seccss.asp?CID=375&DID=1993


About This Community

TESOL's English as a Foreign Language Interest Section facilitates idea exchanges on global and specific EFL/ESL issues; brings together professionals who have had/intend to have EFL/ESL experiences in different countries; provides an international network for teaching positions and professional interests worldwide; and encourages Standing Committees and other ISs to address relevant international concerns.

The EFL Interest Section Web site is
http://www.tesol.org/s_tesol/seccss.asp?CID=301&DID-1806.

The EFL Interest Section e-list, EFLIS-L, may be joined by signing up at http://www.tesol.org/getconnected. Message archives may be read by subscribers at http://lists.tesol.org/read/?forum=eflis-l.

The purpose of the EFLIS Newsletter is to keep EFLIS members in touch with the EFLIS leadership and to share ideas, experiences, opinions, and information of mutual professional and practical interest through articles, columns, and brief announcements. The primary audience for the newsletter is teachers and teacher educators outside North America at all levels: K-12, two- and four-year institutions of higher learning, adult education, English for specific purposes courses, and foreign language centers.

Contact information for EFLIS leaders:
Chair: Sally Harris, ssharris@nwc.edu
Chair-elect: Ke Xu, kexu@aol.com
Webmaster: Gabriela Kleckova, gabriela_kleckova@yahoo.com
E-list Manager: Orlando Rodriquez, orlandor@adinet.com.uy
Newsletter Coeditor: Gabriela Kleckova, gabriela_kleckova@yahoo.com
Newsletter Coeditor: Jane Hoelker, jhoelker@gmail.com