To be Plugged or Unplugged? Is this the whole question? Is everything so black and white? What are the ways to integrate these into teaching not only without losing the real communication but also following the newest trends in ELT? These were just some of the questions in my mind while going to the conference held on Yeditepe University this weekend.
The first star on the stage was Scott Thornbury who is the founder of the big idea “Dogme”. He gave a speech about the importance of Dogme both for students and teachers and pointed out something very important that most of us have forgotten nowadays. Do we really take the correct action plans for the students’ engagement and talk or just unburden ourselves by using course books and technology more than ever.
“We are looking for ways of exploiting the learning opportunities offered by the raw material of the classroom that is the language that emerges from the needs, interests, concerns, and desires of the people in the room”
Some Golden Suggestions for the ELT world
1. Don’t complain: You don’t have to be sunny about everything.
2. Ask an unscripted question: If you ask a question the machine begins to feel less like a machine.
3. Count something: If you count something, you find interesting, you will learn something.
4. Write something: By offering your reflections to an audience, even a small one, you make yourself part of a larger world.
5. Change: Be willing to recognize the inadequacies in what you do and to seek out solutions.
Keeping these valuable ideas in mind I will go on looking for how to channel technology into Dogme. Hope to find many sparkles on this journey.
The second star was Lindsay Clanfield who writes books and materials for English language learners and teachers. His session was interesting in a way that reminded me the old days before technology developed so much. Lindsay looked at Teacher Development from a triangle perspective: Person, Teaching and Language. He underlined that the length of these items may not be equal, which causing a kind of difference among teachers.
It is well known that media has changed the person, teaching and language a lot for 15 years and here is the intelligible summary of the current changes from Lindsay’s point of view:
1. PERSON: Friends- Support Network (PLN) – Self Esteem
2. TEACH: Accessing to materials – sharing/unboxing our own materials – reflecting while writing – asking questions to teachers
3. LANGUAGE: Language trends-exposure to English-Reflection- Sharing
Lindsay finalized his talk suggesting an application called “Outsmarter” to set time limits for addictive websites. It worths keeping in mind since the new innovations on media are multiplying each day.
Looking forward to attending the next conference at Yeditepe University.