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Stories bring it home
International students who study a second language abroad may experience more adjustment problems than their domestic peers (Narra-Tumma & Claudius, 2013). The challenges they face can include problems with immigration/visa status, separation from family, limited financial resources, isolation due to difficulty speaking a new language and learning unfamiliar customs, and negotiating a new educational system. Di Maria and Kwai (2014) explored the attitudes toward foreign students of staff members in student-affairs offices at colleges and found that as many as 64 percent said their offices were not doing anything specifically to accommodate the international student population, and 90 percent said they wanted more training on how to help such students be successful. The researchers concluded that the conversation for international educators should shift from recruit.
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What we talk about when we talk about best practices: Choosing materials
By: Debra Josephson Abrams
In previous articles, we have explored best practices in curricula, methods and approaches, and multiple instructional approaches. In this article, we will examine how to choose materials. Learner autonomy is connected to motivation. If a curriculum does not use materials relevant to learners, their motivation can — at best — lag. Gail K. Oura, David Nunan, Jerry G. Gebhard and many others make a powerful case for curriculum to use authentic materials.
The gift of tongues: Having more languages gives kids better brains
The Northern Star
The days of non-English speaking immigrant children abandoning their parents' languages are becoming a thing of the past, with experts agreeing that bilingualism is only a good thing. At Goonellabah not-for-profit childcare centre, Care-Ring, there are several bilingual kids who speak languages other than English. "Last year we had quite a few children with two languages, and one family had three," Care-Ring's director Tammy Everingham said.
Call for TESOL Bloggers: DEADLINE TODAY
The TESOL Blog is seeking four regular bloggers to post topical blogs bimonthly (once every other week). We are looking for ELT professionals who are interested in sharing their knowledge about classroom practice (activities, lessons, resources), trends in teaching, and practical ways to improve classroom practice and develop professionally. We are seeking bloggers in the areas of teacher education; secondary education; adult education; and speech, pronunciation, and listening. DEADLINE: 20 March 2015. Read the full call.
TESOL 2015 Keynote Livestreams
Can't make it to Toronto? TESOL will be live streaming four keynote sessions from the 2015 TESOL International Convention & English Language Expo.
Singapore 2015 Call for Proposals: Deadline Approaching
Time is running out to submit a proposal for Excellence in Language Instruction: Supporting Classroom Teaching & Learning, a TESOL conference in Singapore. Organized in partnership with the National Institute of Education, this 2½ day event will feature leading experts in teacher education, classroom instruction, and international assessment. Proposals are due 15 April 2015. Submit today!
Principles and Practices of Online Teaching Certificate Program
PP100: Foundation Course
13 April – 24 May 2015
Develop the skills you need to effectively teach English language courses online or blend online segments with your traditional face-to-face courses. The foundation course (PP100) introduces participants to the major design parameters of online courses. Space is limited and registration closes 8 April.
TESOL Training of Trainers
15 April – 26 May 2015
Looking to revitalize or kick-start your continuing professional development program? Register for TESOL's Training of Trainers online course and take action to boost your program's profile and transform your current ELT continuing professional development program using the latest technologies.
FREE TESOL and Oxford University Press Virtual Seminar: Teaching Modals Across the Levels
22 April 2015, 10:30 am–12:00 pm ET. Register by 19 April to participate.
For more TESOL education programs, please visit the TESOL website.
English Language Trainer, Cartus Corporation, USA
Language Center Director, American Cultural Association, Morocco
ESL Language Consultant (Instructor, Professional Staff), Rice University Intensive English Program, USA
For more jobs, please visit the TESOL Career Center.
States prepare public for Common Core test results
Even as states begin administering new tests aligned with the Common Core State Standards, they are ramping up efforts to eliminate or minimize public backlash when the scores — widely expected to be markedly lower than results from previous assessments — are released later this year. From old-fashioned fliers designed to reach parents via students' backpacks to webinars intended for administrators and teachers, states including Illinois and New Jersey are using a diverse set of resources and partnering with various groups to prepare school communities and the general public for what's coming.
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Arne Duncan: School funding inequality makes education 'separate and unequal'
The Huffington Post
Many school systems remain "fundamentally separate and unequal," U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Friday, with 23 states spending more per pupil in affluent school districts than they do in high-poverty districts. What's more, Duncan said on a call with reporters, the inequality may be getting worse. Duncan alluded to Republican-backed efforts to overhaul the No Child Left Behind Act, which he said would give even more money to well-off school districts at the expense of struggling districts. In February, House Republicans proposed the Student Success Act as a rewrite of No Child Left Behind.
Senate budget blueprint thin on education policy, funding details
Senate Republicans unveiled their fiscal year 2016 budget proposal — and, similar to the one released yesterday by their GOP colleagues in the House, it's short on education specifics. Like the House budget proposal, the Senate's would fund the federal government to the tune of $493 billion, keeping in place the across-the-board spending caps, known as the sequester, to which the president's proposed budget does not adhere. And, like the House plan, it would make even steeper cuts for non-defense discretionary funding beginning fiscal year 2017.
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Thais' poor English to hurt job prospects in ASEAN community
At a luxurious resort in this southern island, Boblyn Pertible from the Philippines is completing a professional internship for her bachelor's degree in hotel management. "I will consider applying for jobs outside my country after graduation," she said in fluent English. "The coming of the ASEAN Economic Community will definitely open doors to more opportunities for me." In December, Thailand and the other nine member states of the Association of Southeast Asia Nations are due to start a single market.
Increased smartphone use equals lower GPA among college students
If college students want to excel in the classroom, they'll need to lay off using their smartphones, according to a new study. A Kent State University survey of approximately 500 students revealed that coeds using their phones more than 10 hours per day had a significantly lower grade-point average — 2.84 — in comparison to the GPA of those students who only used their phones up to two hours daily — 3.15. Professors Jacob Barkley, Andrew Lepp and Aryn Karpinski published their findings. The survey, The Relationship Between Cell Phone Use and Academic Performance in a Sample of U.S. College Students, follows in the footsteps of previous research done and findings made by the group.
Museums flex their multilingual, multicultural muscles
The New York Times
As the Americans who are at least 5 years old and speak a language other than English at home now exceed 20 percent of the population, museums across the country are responding with bilingual and non-English educational programs for all ages. Offered in languages including Spanish, Russian, Mandarin and Persian, the programs are at a wide variety of institutions, including art, children's and natural history museums. They do everything from celebrating holidays like the Day of the Dead, observed by many Latinos, to teaching technology and crafts to adults who have not mastered English.
Speaking a second language may change how you see the world
Where did the thief go? You might get a more accurate answer if you ask the question in German. How did she get away? Now you might want to switch to English. Speakers of the two languages put different emphasis on actions and their consequences, influencing the way they think about the world, according to a new study. The work also finds that bilinguals may get the best of both worldviews, as their thinking can be more flexible.
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Aspiring teachers struggled on new tests, data show, prompting diversity debate
Chalkbeat New York
African-American and Hispanic college students in New York fared worse on new teacher certification tests than their white counterparts, new data show, reprising concerns that efforts to improve teacher quality could undermine a simultaneous goal to boost diversity. In the 2013-2014 school year, 48 percent of aspiring black teachers and 56 percent of Hispanic students passed a new, more rigorous literacy exam, compared to 75 percent of white students, according to the data. The achievement gaps were also significant on a second new exam that measures candidates' grasp of teaching methods for children with special learning needs.
What are the most challenging Common Core standards?
A new look into how students handle some of the toughest reading and math Common Core standards could help educators identify where they need to spend more time. Curriculum Associates recently conducted research using data from more than 750,000 students to identify the reading and math Common Core State Standards that students find the most challenging.
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TESOL English Language Bulletin is a digest of the most important news selected for TESOL International Association from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. TESOL International Association does not endorse any of the advertised products and services. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the author and not of TESOL.
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