On April 30 in London, as part of its season of events for teachers of English, the British Council will be holding a two-part seminar. Johanna Stirling will explore some common myths about spelling and how learners can be helped to improve. Willy Cardoso will then take over to argue that our knowledge of teaching has been co-constructed in cultural and historical ways.
Many of the prevalent myths about spelling actually create barriers to learning it. However, rather than just exploding the myths teachers have to build something to replace them, so spelling doesn’t get ignored in classrooms and in the outside world. Johanna Stirling will demonstrate some multi-sensory activities that can be used with learners of all ages, for example parents with children, and that anyone can use to help themselves.
In the second half of the seminar Willy Cardoso will give a presentation on how teachers learn to teach. He will argue that, in general, teacher education, development and training programmes lack the theoretical foundations of what constitutes teacher learning, mainly in its cognitive and affective elements, and that this has far reaching implications. For example, by focusing primarily on the transmission of classroom management and language analysis skills, teachers run the risk of shaping the ELT profession as that of technicians.
Willy Cardoso will explain that, for the benefit of the profession, language teachers need to be considered first and foremost as educators. To do so, the presenter will propose some principles and practices that can place the socio-cultural aspects of learning how to teach at the core of the process.
The British Council Seminar Series takes place across the UK, including once a month in London. The seminars are intended to provoke debate and discussion on current issues in English language teaching and can contribute to the continuing professional development of English language teachers based in, or visiting, the United Kingdom.
Every seminar is free of charge and includes the opportunity to network with fellow ELT practitioners. Registration to attend the seminar in person can be made at: http://spellingmythsandsocioculturaltd.eventbrite.com/.
For more on the English Effect exhibition, visit www.britishcouncil.org/englisheffect. Twitter hashtag: #EnglishEffect