EFL Events Calendar June 15-19, Summer School in Yakut/TESOL Larissa Olesova Yakutsk _______ ______________ June 16, 2009 Conference New Communication Opportunities in Irkutsk State March 1, 2009 Snopkova Nina ELT: Linguistics, IT and Theory of Translation Technical University _______________________ June XVth NATE Conference NATE, TATELTA 1 April – 27,20 "Learning to Speak the Same Ministry of Education Language" and Science Kazan __________________________ September MUN Conference KhabarovskOlga Kovbasyuk ____________________________ September 8th International Ivanovo Olga Karpova School in Lexicography September International Linguistic Forum Far Eastern State Humanities Nataliya Maximova University Khabarovsk
Umbrella Newsletter # 38 Dear colleagues, While compiling this Umbrella Newsletter I played with VisualThesaurus (point 4 below) and I typed in a word competition as a trial. Why the word competition? As teachers, competition is a word we are all thinking about nowadays. Our universities worry about future low enrollments and having to compete to recruit students. Even our students themselves are competing for high scores on tests such as the EGE. That word competition truly embraces the feelings of so many English language teachers. Here is what I got from VisualThesaurus: an interactive visual map with my word (competition) in the center, surrounded by its related words and meanings. Definitions are also available. (place for a scheme) Arent we getting into a business relation in which two parties compete to gain customers when we attempt to recruit students for Universities? And are we not rivals (the act of competing as for profit or a prize) when we are preparing our student to take the EGE? To be competitive in todays education field means you have to have the best resources. Students are offered new opportunities through YouTube and podcasting – they can view 1001 video lectures from the best Universities or try new on-line trainers (YouTube Edu Videolectures.net Can they really benefit from these materials without an experienced teacher? May be some can. But it is obvious that a teacher equipped with these techniques will win the rivalry not only with local teachers but with an international cohort of teachers :-). I would like to encourage you to come to NATE Conference in Kazan (point 1) and discuss how to learn to speak the same language with students and how to be a more effective teacher at the time of high-stakes competition.http://web.rambler.ru/?id=17287http://web.rambler.ru/?id=15095http://academicearth.org/ Elena
Umbrella Newsletter # Gentle Reminder NATE Organizing Committee encourages you to check their website regularly New information has just been posted on - extension for submission of Speaker Proposal Forms till April 15 - deadline for EV (electronic Village) submission is June 8th, hosts and sponsors - small grant opportunities The organizers ask you not procrastinate till maximum as they need to secure equipment and space, workforce and volunteers, tickets and catering services.http://www.kazannate2009.ru 2. First Impressions of TESOL Judith Elliott, our former Fellow in Vladivostok, is sharing her impressions of TESOL2009: Here are some of the web page addresses that I picked up at the convention that I thought Russian teachers would find useful: A useful site on the requirements for TESOL proposals is: It's a power point presentation about how to write a proposal. (Note the deadline for the proposals for TESOL 2010 in Boston is June 2nd) I went to a workshop by Kate Kinsella which was spectacular. She has some very helpful ideas about modeling accurate oral fluency in the classroom speech to improve oral speech and raise the level of vocabulary, which also leads to better writing. Her classroom video clips are right on target. Just check out her sites. Also for examples of presentations, with video inserts of classroom performances, go to:
Umbrella Newsletter # 38 (continued) 3. Small Grants to Support Summer Schools If you plan to organize a Summer School (English Language Camp) for kids from low-income families this summer, you could apply for a small grant from the English Language Office (ELO). Please submit your request to Nataliya Fomenko Here are the tips that will help you in preparing a request: Read through the online handbooks Refer to the Ufa and Kazan English Language Summer Camps for Youth Handbooks that can be found on our website or Please use both of these handbooks as guides, NOT as programs that you need to follow step by step. Please also check recommendation at (point D) Include a teacher training component While we understand the goal of the camp is to work with students, we especially appreciate camps that incorporate a professional development opportunity for teachers. Develop strong cross-cultural and civic education strands During the camps students should learn about cross-cultural issues, including those that involve Russian, U.S., local and other cultures. You are welcome to introduce original approaches and themes (combine with IT, theme such as 'conflict resolution' and 'leadership studies'). Make the camps active, student-centered, project-based events Students should be exposed to sports, drama, music and arts and craft activities. Fluency-focused instruction, activity- and task-based approaches should be highlighted. Use alumni of USG programs as teachers and camp counselors USG program alumni bring an important element to camp: first-hand knowledge of Russian and American culture. Our experience shows that inclusion of USG programs alumni (FLEX, TEA, PiE, LTMS, Open World, etc) contributes considerably to the success of summer camps, developing students language and leadership In anticipation of funding for your camp, please submit a brief proposal that discusses how you might incorporate the five recommendations above. Also, please provide a budget between 1000 and 3000 USD per grant that could cover student tuition, travel to/from summer school, other student-related costs (materials, food, etc.). We would like to have this proposal by Wednesday, April VisualThesaurus.com VisualThesaurus.com uses mindmap concept to display dictionary entries and their relations to other words. Although the service requires a subscription, there is a demo mode that will allow you to assess its functionality. Try this link below. Check out the mindmap that will display on the right – its really cool. ELO announces a competition for ideas on how to use this in the class. Reward: some new books from our office! Deadline – July 15th, please send your ideas to Below is a link to their Spelling Bee program that uses same mindmap concept and doesnt require $$.
Umbrella Newsletter # 38 (continued) 5. April 22 is Earth Day This is a great opportunity to promote an ecological conscience in our students and in ourselves. Below find some materials that may prove useful for your classes. - A site with Earth Day history, tips to take action at home, at school, and at work, as well as related links especially developed for kids. - A site with information on what Earth Day is, and simple tips to be environment-friendly at home, at school and in the community. Podcasts are available too. – An issue of E-Journal USA on The Greening of US Corporations. Can be downloaded in PDF to bind and have in booklet format, or viewed in html. – An issue of E-Journal USA on Clean Energy Solutions. Can be downloaded in PDF to bind and have in booklet format, or viewed in html. – An electronic publication of E-Journal USA on Protecting the Worlds Ocean from Commercial Fishing and Environmental Damage. – An electronic publication of E-Journal USA on Endangered Species A site with ideas for crafts, activities, and more. 6. Deadline for TEA is April 27th Have a look at this link to TEA video that has been recently posted on YouTube. It gives a brief overview of what the TEA program is and how it works. Try your hand and submit your supplication! 7. IV Group is Learning how to Create Tests in the USA Eleven Russian experts from various cities of Russia are participating in the International Visitor (IV) Program. They were nominated by their EFL Teachers' Associations. They are expected to share knowledge which they have gained during the Program with their local communities upon return. Please have a look at the link below on YouTube - it is a story about their visit to VoA.
Umbrella Newsletter # 38 (continued) 8. Splendid Speaking To help you plan your speaking lessons and to make sure you get the most from the free materials at Splendid Speaking, I'd like to give you an update on what's available and offer some suggested steps to help you use the resources effectively. If you have any questions about anything we haven't covered please get in touch. Step 1: Remind your students of our daily Splendid Expressions quiz. They'll be able to use our three-stage approach to help them learn these colloquial expressions in bite-sized chunks each day: Step 2: Invite your students to follow us on Twitter to see these and other colloquial expressions used in context. They may even choose to take the Twitter Challenge! Learn more about Twitter and English Phrases here: Step 3: Remind your students to tune in to our weekly featured recording of a student carrying out exam style speaking tasks. Alternatively, you can download the recording for use offline in class: Subscribers to the Splendid Speaking newsletter can download the transcripts: Step 4: Download and print the accompanying 'Get Speaking' Task Sheet - a ready-made speaking lesson including 2 speaking activities, tips on carrying out the task successfully and a useful vocabulary list. There's even a link to the featured recording to offer students a model answer: Step 5: If your students are preparing for an exam send them along to our Speaking Exam guides for advice and guidance. And if they'd like to meet up with other students to practise for the Speaking paper invite them to join Splendid Speaking on Facebook, now with over 800 members: A guide to signing up is available here: Finally, if you're interested in getting help with some of the exciting technology available to language teachers, there's some reading matter for you too:
Programs for Underprivileged Students Access Microscholarship Program The English Access Microscholarship Program is an English-language program sponspored by the U.S. State Deparment that focuses on highly motivated students from economically under-privileged families. The program is offered in six Russian cities but we are highlighting it here with the hope that the idea inspires more Russian teachers to implement similar programs in their local schools. For some ideas on how to implement such a program please read "D. Programs for Underprivileged Children" towards the bottom of page under "Recent Highlights" on this website. You can get details about the Access Program, if you go to Khasavyurt Access Program website Russia Overview: the program offers the opportunity to share ideas with talented teachers and with exceptionally motivated teenagers in a productive and comfortable environment. These programs benefit from regular participation from visiting English-teaching Fellows, Specialists and Fulbrighters. They have attracted praise from educators, administrators and Russian and American citizens, many of whom feel it is a great contribution to English-teaching and reaching students who may not have access to special programs. This model of summer sessions and foreign language education has influenced hundreds of teachers to adopt a more interactive, student-centered approach. You may also wish to contact the English- language Office at the U.S. Embassy for more information about these teaching methods and how to reach this target pupil population.