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Lifelong learning: Inspiring the quest for knowledge
By: Erick Herrmann
What is a teacher's role? The answer to this question has seemed to expand over the past few decades. On the surface, the role of the teacher is to help students learn the knowledge and skills prescribed in the various federal, state and local standards. Many teachers would share that instilling a lifelong love of learning in their students is also a primary goal. Yet, how can we do this in an era of prescriptive learning and standardized tests?
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Should teachers be judged on student performance?
Should teachers be judged on student performance? Is it a fair assessment of their skills as educators? A recent study published in Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis is the latest in a number of forms of research that cast doubt on whether it is feasible for states to evaluate teachers based partially on student test scores. Research shows us that little to no correlation exists between high quality teaching and the appraisals these teachers are given.
Poor English due to learning anxiety?
New Straits Times
It was not uncommon in the kampung those days that you would get teased by your friends if you picked up an English storybook or spoke in English. No one would dare converse in English or risk being labelled as "action" (showing off). Things have changed somewhat, partly due to the advent of the Internet, but people still feel some ambivalence towards learning the English language, especially in the Malaysian context. No doubt English is an important second language and it is widely spoken in the country. From being seen as a language of a colonial power, English is now a language for modern science and business, and a new window to the world.
Call for Commission for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Reviewers
Increase your professional expertise and help advance the field by becoming a TESOL/CAEP program reviewer! Apply today! Deadline 5 Jan 2015.
TESOL Statement on the Massacre in Peshawar, Pakistan
Read TESOL's statement on the recent events in Pakistan.
Call for Proposals: Singapore 2015
TESOL invites you 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. Submit your proposal today!
Principles and Practices of Online Teaching Certificate Program
PP100: Foundation Course
19 January 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. PP100 reflects the communicative nature of the online environment and is based on asynchronous discussion and collaboration. Registration closes 14 January.
K–12 Dream Day in Toronto, Ontario Canada
A full day of interactive training designed to equip attendees with new strategies and resources for working with ELLs. The day features 20 workshops, a keynote address from Dr. Jim Cummins, and STEM panel discussion. Register for both K–12 Dream Day and the full TESOL convention by 30 November and receive 10 percent off! Group discounts also available.
NEW: Adult Ed Day in Toronto, Ontario Canada
This brand-new, one of a kind event is designed exclusively for adult education instructors and administrators as well as volunteers working in adult education programs. Participants will choose from 20 workshops, hear a keynote address from Dr. Jim Cummins, and enjoy an afternoon panel discussion on immigration policy. Register for both Adult Ed Day and the full TESOL convention by 30 November and receive 10 percent off! Group discounts also available.
For more TESOL education programs, please visit the TESOL website.
Assistant Director, Center for English as a Second Language, USA
Instructor, Intensive English Program, American University of Kuwait, Kuwait
Curriculum Coordinator, Massachusetts International Academy, USA
For more jobs, please visit the TESOL Career Center.
Immigration reform 2014: How Obama's executive action benefits undocumented students
Last month, President Barack Obama announced an historic executive action related to current U.S. immigration policy. The order focuses on three major issues: 1) cracking down on illegal immigration at the border; 2) the deportation of undocumented felons; and 3) criminal background checks and tax requirements for undocumented immigrants who have lived in the U.S. for more than five years. While immigration issues are still very divisive (some members of Congress are even threatening another government shutdown over the issue), this action has the potential to help ease the stigma of undocumented immigration and the fear of deportation for students young and old.
GOP Senate aides working on draft ESEA bill that could ditch annual testing
Senate GOP aides, who are hoping to get a bill reauthorizing the No Child Left Behind Act on the runway early in the new year, are getting started on legislation that looks very similar to a bill Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the incoming chairman of the Senate education committee, introduced last year. But there would be one major change: an end to the federal mandate for annual testing, Republican Senate aides confirm.
New Maryland standardized tests pose unique challenges to new English speakers
Students in Maryland and 11 other states and the District of Columbia will start taking new standardized tests in March to assess their progress in math and English language arts under the Common Core standards. But some education experts fear that students who are only beginning to learn to speak English will be at a disadvantage when they take the more rigorous, computerized exams.
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Can preschool children be taught a second language?
For years it has been thought that teaching a foreign language to preschool-age children would be futile. However, recent studies indicate that the best time for a child to learn another language is in the first three to four years of life. Here are some important reasons for exposing children to early second language learning.
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.
District 105 adds full-day kindergarten for 2015-2016 school year
Starting next year, parents in La Grange School District 105 in Illinois will have the option of enrolling their children in full-day kindergarten, officials decided. Recently, the school board voted 6-1 to approve a recommendation to establish the program, which will expand the district's kindergarten classes from four twice-a-day sessions to eight full day sessions. Board member Robert Webb cast the sole no vote on the recommendation. With the new structure, the district is also looking into offering bilingual sections for kindergarten students who are English language learners.
Research studies role native language plays in processing words in new languages
Research at the University of Kansas is exploring how a person's native language can influence the way the brain processes auditory words in a second language. Because cues that signal the beginning and ending of words can differ from language to language, a person's native language can provide misleading information when learning to segment a second language into words. Annie Tremblay, an assistant professor of linguistics, is trying to better understand the kinds of cues second language learners listen for when recognizing words in continuous speech. She also is studying how adaptive adult learners are in acquiring these new speech cues.
Student reading practices lag far behind national goals
As new learning standards put more emphasis on getting students to be able to read and analyze non-fiction text, this year's annual "What Kids Are Reading and Why It Matters" report from Renaissance Learning suggests that classrooms have a long way to go. Renaissance produces Accelerated Reader, an integrated reading program that delivers online quizzes to students on the books they've read, both fiction and nonfiction.
The student experience
The fourth-graders bounce into the tiny classroom and find their seats, wiggling into place around a U-shaped table. It's a diverse group. Each of the seven students comes from a family whose native language is something other than English. On this day, the little English language learners are all smiles and giggles. Alissa Bornhoft intuitively knows how to harness the students' energy. "How is everyone today?" she asks.
The TESOL English Language Bulletin is presented as a service to members of TESOL International Association and other English language teaching professionals. For information about TESOL member benefits, visit www.tesol.org or contact us at email@example.com.
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.
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601 Download media kit
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Craig Triplett, TESOL Digital Content Manager, 703-518-2526
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