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Opening Keynote

Andrés Ruzo
Thursday, 16 July 2020
12:00-1:00 pm US ET

Hacking Parallax: A NatGeo Explorer on the Power of Perspective

Sponsored by:

National Geographic Learning

Our world is so incredible that it is difficult to describe its richness in a single language. Nowhere is this more evident than through the lens of National Geographic. Join explorer Andrés Ruzo on a journey from the Amazon to the Arctic—because when perspectives meet, discoveries often follow.

Andrés Ruzo is a National Geographic explorer and host of the award-winning NatGeo Latin America show, Misterios del Inframundo (Mysteries of the Underworld). His work has been featured across NatGeo platforms, including the channel, magazine, digital, and other media outlets. He is a geothermal scientist, conservationist, science communicator, and educator who in 2011 became the first geoscientist granted the shamanic blessing to study the sacred Boiling River of the Amazon. He is the founder and director of the Boiling River Project, a nonprofit dedicated to understanding and protecting the Boiling River area by bringing together science, traditional Amazonian knowledge, and many other disciplines. He is based between Miami (USA) and Lima (Peru), holds degrees in geology and finance, and will soon be receiving his geoscience PhD. (Southern Methodist University). He is also a TED MainStage speaker and TEDBook author and has been featured on numerous major media outlets across the globe.

Recording for the Opening Keynote


ToY Mandy

James E. Alatis Plenary

Mandy Manning
Friday, 17 July 2020
2:00-3:00 pm US ET

Our Paramount Duty: Language as a Vehicle for Connection and Belonging

There are 71 million displaced people worldwide. As educators, language acquisition is not our goal, it is our vehicle—a vehicle through which we connect ELLs to mainstream students, so every student is fearless in reaching across difference. Our goal is that every student feels welcome and that they belong in our schools and communities.

Mandy Manning teaches English to newly arrived refugee and immigrant students in the Newcomer Center at Joel E. Ferris High School in Spokane, Washington. In her classroom, Mandy uses experiential projects like map-making to help her students process trauma, celebrate their home countries and culture, and learn about their new community. As 2018 National Teacher of the Year, Mandy encourages educators to teach their students to overcome their fears and seek out new experiences. Mandy strives to create connections between her students and the community inside and outside of the school. Mandy has taught for the past 20 years, 8 of which have been in her current role. She earned a BA from Eastern Washington University, an MA from West Texas A&M University, and an MFA from Northwest Institute of Literary Arts. Mandy is a National Board Certified Teacher.


Saturday Keynote

Michel DeGraff
Saturday, 18 July 2020
9:00-10:00 AM US ET

#BlackLivesMatter, so no language is ‘other’!

This talk is about the politics of linguistics and education, with Haiti as a poster case where language is used for the ‘othering’ of certain speech communities.  The MIT-Haiti Initiative promotes a vision where linguistics and education can contribute to equal opportunity and sustainable development by putting all languages on a level playing field. This Initiative is one model for human rights and for social justice.  Lessons learned can be applied worldwide.

Professor Michel DeGraff was born in Haiti.  In 1992, he obtained his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania.  In 1996, he joined MIT’s Department of Linguistics & Philosophy.  His research in linguistics is on the development and structures of Creole languages.  Major results include a series of ongoing paradigm shifts both in linguistics, specifically Creole studies, and in the use of Creole languages in education and research, with focus on his native Haiti.  Haiti is a poster case for postcolonial hegemony in the Global South where non-colonial languages (in this case, Haitian Creole) are excluded in formal education and generally disenfranchised and stigmatized.  DeGraff’s research is ushering, both in linguistics and in education, a more scientifically grounded and inclusive approach to Creole languages and their speakers.  On the strictly linguistics front, DeGraff's research has revealed some of the fundamental ways in which Creole languages are structurally and developmentally on a par with non-Creole languages (such as French, English, Spanish, Chinese, etc.). DeGraff's work has also engaged intellectual history and critical race theory as he documents the links between linguists’ claims about Creole languages and the making and transmission of hierarchies of power with racialized correlates.  This work has social implications as well, as part of an ongoing struggle around the use of language and education for human rights and social justice. DeGraff is co-founder and co-director of the MIT-Haiti Initiative http://haiti.mit.edu for improving access to and quality of education in Haiti through the strategic use of digital and non-digital resources in Kreyòl. The MIT-Haiti Initiative, through a constructive intersection between linguistics and education, is setting up a global model for opening up access to quality education via the use of local languages in the design of high-quality active learning methods and materials.  The most recent advance in this Initiative is the launch, in September 2019, of a digital platform http://MIT-Ayiti.NET for the co-creation and curated crowdsourcing and sharing of educational resources in Kreyòl in all disciplines and at all grade levels.  More details about Michel DeGraff’s work are available at his MIT website: http://mit.edu/degraff .

Recording for the Saturday Keynote


Deb Healey

Presidential Keynote

Deborah Healey
Saturday, 18 July 2020
2:30-3:30 pm US ET

Teaching With Play: Games, Game-Based Learning, and Gamification

Play is powerful for all ages, and learners generally like a fun factor in their learning. Most teachers use games, and some have tried game-based learning and gamification. But what are the differences among games, game-based learning, and gamification, and what underlies why they work—or don’t work?

Dr. Deborah Healey is the 2019–2020 president of TESOL International Association. An online and face-to-face teacher and teacher educator, she writes and presents extensively around the world (Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America) on pedagogy and appropriate use of technology in language teaching. She is a contributor to two TESOL Technology Standards publications as well as the TESOL Encyclopedia of English Language Teaching and the Routledge Handbook of Language Learning and Technology. Having used games extensively in her teaching, Dr. Healey began researching gamification and gamifying her online and face-to-face courses for the University of Oregon. She has found the psychology of game-play fascinating, especially as it applies to teaching and learning.

Recording for the Presidential Keynote