December 2, 2012 by k. liz
So, I had the opportunity to attend Yildiz Technical University’s first ELT Symposium this weekend. I had a blast! I learned a lot this weekend, but here are a few of the highlights:
Chuck Sandy: The Heart of Education (@chucksandy)
Loved this talk!! Chuck talked about our philosophy or view of education – is it a downward spiral, or is it a view of possibilities that results in learning that can occur anywhere, anytime, in any way? Are we providing our students the opportunities to succeed at anything? Are we reaching them where they are? Are we exciting them about learning? This was a challenging talk to evaluate how and why I am teaching and what I am accomplishing with my students.
We awaken in others the same attitude of mind we hold toward them.
Marisa Constantinides: From Curation to Creation (@Marisa_C)
I enjoyed Marisa’s talk about curating materials online. This was basically a run down of how and where to collect and save materials so that they can be useful for us in the future. This helps to avoid the danger of only skimming information, but rather making it useable so that we can really learn from it. She shared a lot of helpful ideas, and then related it to the idea of actually creating.
Creation is building on other’s ideas.
Luke Meddings: Give the Test a Rest (@lukemeddings)
This session provoked us to think through assessment and how and why we use it. Is assessment actually preparing the students for what they need to do in life? Are they going to be more successful because of the assessments that we give to them? Luke gave shared some really thought-provoking stories and ideas to help look at ways to make assessment more valuable and beneficial for the students.
Are students simply vessels to be filled with facts?
Stephen Krashen: Technology as a Tool for Comprehensible Input (@skrashen)
I was really looking forward to this session, although I had no idea what to expect. It was great Krashen incorporated the concepts that he is well known for, but also how to link those (comprehensible & COMPELLING input) with technology. He noted that normal people are not interested in language acquisition, but rather in stories. This should drive our lessons, not the use of technology, but rather stories and how technology can facilitate them.
The world is built on stories.
Nicky Hockly: Facebook in the Classroom (@TheConsultantsE)
This was a great, practical talk on how to use Facebook in the classroom as well as some things to be careful of when deciding whether or not to use Facebook in the classroom. Nicky showed some simple ways to use Facebook that will not only engage learners, but still accomplish the same tasks that we traditionally do with pen and paper.
Adam Simpson: Engaging Generation Y in the Language Classroom (@yearinthelifeof)
Adam shared 10 facts about Generation Y regarding their use of technology, and then applied that to how we should approach those things in the classroom so that we can better engage them in the lesson.
Lindsay Clandfield: A Technological Disaster (@lclandfield)
Lindsay spent his session talking about the place of technology in education. He considered many questions that people ask regarding technology in classroom. He considered things such as the pedagogical and professional place of technology and whether or not it is environmentally or economically positive or negative. The talk was definitely very thought-provoking and reminded me of the fact that we have to seriously consider why and how to use technology and be convinced in our reasoning. One of his most helpful points was that teachers often make the error of putting technology over teaching and excitement over evidence. This can’t be. If we use technology, it must serve a purpose in the classroom that matches the objectives we set for our students.
It was really a great weekend, and I’ve learned so much! I know that there were others involved in the conference that I was not able to hear or connect with, but I would like to thank Yildiz for putting on a great conference. I’m looking forward to next year’s!!
Have a great Sunday night everybody!!