Talks for Engllish Teachers

Seven Ways of Looking at Grammar THE NEW SCHOOL FOR PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT | What is grammar, and how is it internalized in the mind? Is it made up of symbolic code or of neural connections? Is it a sedimented trace left by previous conversations or an innate human capacity? Our answers to these questions obviously shape the way we go about teaching second languages. In this talk, Scott Thornbury reviews some of the main models of grammar—often couched as metaphors—and looks at their implications for classroom practice. Thornbury is a faculty member in The New School MA in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) program and an author whose work has been published by Oxford University Press. Empowering the Language Learner: A Discussion with Diane Larsen-Freeman THE NEW SCHOOL FOR GENERAL STUDIES | Using a combination of lecture and experiential exercises, ESL education specialist Diane Larsen-Freeman traces the evolution of language teaching methods over the past 60 years, discussing how each evolutionary phase has contributed to a more “whole-person” view of language learners. Larsen-Freeman suggests that when educators treat language as a closed, static system, they create a critical barrier to student empowerment. When language is instead seen as the complex, dynamic system, teachers are able to help their students transform their linguistic world, not merely conform to it. Larsen-Freeman illustrates how this shift in understanding has implications for what and how teachers teach. Dr. Diane Larsen-Freeman is a professor of education and director of the English Language Institute at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She is also Distinguished Senior Faculty Fellow at the School for International Training in Brattleboro, Vermont. She has spoken and published widely on the topics of teacher education, second language acquisition, English grammar, and language teaching methodology. In 1997, Dr. Larsen-Freeman was inducted into the Vermont Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 1999, she was named an ESL pioneers by ESL Magazine. In 2000, she received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Heinle & Heinle Publishers. Learner language is the constantly changing ability students have to communicate as they learn a new language. It provides an index of students progress, allowing teachers to determine how to best educate them. By analyzing examples of learner language, students develop skills to address it when they are teaching. Elaine Tarone is a professor in Second Language Studies and director of the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA) at the University of Minnesota. Bonnie Swierzbin teaches in the TESOL-accredited ESL/K12 Licensure and MA in ESL programs at Hamline University.

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