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Sixth Annual MATE-TESOL Haiti Conference

Hervé François Alcindor, President, MATE-TESOL Haiti,

Our sixth annual conference, on "Strengthening ELL's Success," was held on June 25 at the Haitian American Institute (HAI), Port-au-Prince, Haiti. It was sponsored by IATEFL, TESOL, and the Office of Public Diplomacy (OPD), U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince, and was attended by about 36 participants from throughout the region.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Irvel Franck, the director of studies at HAI, took a moment of silence for those, especially the teachers of English, who passed away in the deadly earthquake of January 12, 2010, and he highlighted the important work that MATE-TESOL HAITI has realized in the country. He also urged MATE members to always keep up the good work, especially in the English language.

Mrs. Scarlett Sassine-Maximilien, director general at HAI, urged the teachers of English to be more concerned about their professional development and said that this educational event was a motivation for the EFL students.

Then, Mrs. Angier M. Peavy, the cultural affairs attaché at the OPD, focused on the cultural exchange between Haiti and the United States of America, and the importance of the phonology in English language learning.

In his talk, Mr. Antoine David emphasized the perfection of communicative competence in a completely homogeneous speech community, and also demonstrated teaching pronunciation and explained the difference between English teacher and teacher of English.

Finally, Mrs. Comfort Davis Mingot, the public relations officer, discussed the topic "Tips and Techniques for Teaching English" by focusing on seven tips on how to teach English and four successful techniques to maximize students' participation in class while Mr. Hervé Francois Alcindor, the current president, engaged participants in pronunciation and phonology activities, during which he shared practical ideas for teaching pronunciation effectively in class. He also pointed out that pronunciation is important for successful English language speaking.

In conclusion, Hervé Francois Alcindor announced next year's MATE-TESOL Conference in late June and the 2011 TESOL Annual Convention and Exhibit in New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America. He also thanked all the participants.

The delegates reported that the conference was a great success.