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FAAPI '13 Keynote Speakers

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Politics of Pronunciation

Traditional approaches to teaching English pronunciation are based on Received Pronunciation. This is often presented as being the ‘standard’ or ‘correct’ form of spoken English. But the linguistic landscape is continually changing – even Received Pronunciation as a speech system is changing. What was considered ’standard’ 30 years ago now sounds ‘old fashioned’... In the UK, Received Pronunciation is no longer held up as being the only ‘correct’ way to speak English. What does this mean for English Pronunciation teaching in an international context? Can we still speak about ‘standard’ accents in the era of Globish?
Accents reflect our identities, and no one way of speaking is inherently better than another. However, this doesn’t mean that pronunciation teaching should be abandoned altogether. There is a middle ground: there is a difference between training people to talk like RP drones, and helping them to speak in a way that is expressive and clear to anyone listening. Although individual accents should be respected, there comes a point where pronunciation habits can be a limitation to fluency.
This presentation will show that pronunciation teaching should be flexible, and tailored to students’ individual goals, and will present key skills and concepts that are useful for teaching different pronunciation models. There is space for both sensitivity and rigour within pronunciation teaching, and without either one of them, we are letting our students down.

WORKSHOP: Practical Pronunciation

Pronunciation teaching has taken a one-size-fits all approach, based on ‘standard’ Received Pronunciation textbooks for too long. Dialect coach Helen Ashton will question the position of RP, and argue that the goals of pronunciation teaching ought to be considered on a case by case basis, and tailored to meet students‘ needs. Drawing on her training as a voice coach, Helen will demonstrate that speech is a physical act – speech sounds are formed by muscles of the mouth and breathing system. These muscles develop habits, which enable us to easily, habitually speak with our own accents. In order to pronounce English speech sounds differently, these muscles need to be trained to move differently. Helen will introduce you to techniques that enable this, as well as presenting a hierarchy of goals for a systematic approach to pronunciation teaching. In this seminar she will highlight the deal-breakers, quick fixes and basic anatomy that EFL teachers need to know to help develop students’ clarity and fluency, rather than training them to speak verbatim RP.

Helen Ashton trained at The Central School of Speech and Drama, graduating with Distinction from the MA in Voice. She specialises in speech and accent work, which she teaches at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), in London. She has coached actors in many different accents for Stage and Screen appearances. Helen is co-author of the pronunciation guide Collins’ Work On Your Accent which was published in 2012, and teaches English pronunciation to speakers of all languages. Helen also holds an MA with First Class Honours in History from The University of Edinburgh.

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: The Landscape of English Language Teaching: Roots, Routes and Ramifications

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The last two decades have seen considerable changes in the landscape of English language teaching in our midst. This presentation will outline the background to these changes, the current trends worldwide and in our region, and how they influence the reality of teachers of English today. The influence of legislation, market forces, disiciplinary developments, and different types of actors has been felt in various ways and continue to shape the professional lives of teachers. Enhanced awareness of these influences is an essential component of professional development that will allow teachers to make informed decisions about their careers.

Dr. Cristina Banfi holds a Teacher’s degree from INES en LV “JRF”, an M.Phil. in Linguistics from the University of Cambridge and a Ph.D. in Linguistics from University College London. She has worked in educational institutions at all levels, from pre-school to higher education. She has organised and participated in international conferences, published papers and books and edited journals. She was president of APIBA (two terms), Head of the Department of Languages at Universidad Católica Argentina and International Affairs Officer at the CONEAU (Comisión Nacional de Evaluación y Acreditación Universitaria).She is currently Director of Foreign Languages at the Ministry of Education of the City of Buenos Aires and teaches at IES en LV ‘J. R. Fernández’, ISP ‘J.V. González’, ENS ‘S.B. de Spangenberg’, Universidad de Belgrano and Universidad de Buenos Aires. Her main areas of interest are: educational management and research, professional development, theoretical and applied linguistics and bilingual education.

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Performing in a Creative Pre-Service Bilingual Teacher Education

This plenary will discuss pre-service bilingual teacher education within a socio-historical-cultural perspective (Vygotsky, 1934/2001 & Leontiev, 1977). Teacher education is seen as a network of revolutionary activities in which transformation is defined in and by the process of production of new realities for all participants. This perspective of bilingual teacher education follows a creative inspiration, which understands that participants are active in the construction of their professional skills. That is, they do not simply talk about teaching and teaching practices but they engage in activities that are present in school contexts. So they play with the reality they are learning, performing as teachers (Holzman, 2009; Vygotsky, 1930).

WORKSHOP: Real life activities as the basis for teaching in multilingual contexts

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This workshop offers the opportunity to discuss how different content areas can be articulated in order to connect learning to students’ every day activities. According to Leontiev (1977), an activity, supported by rules, division of labor and community, takes place within three focal points: the subjects, the object on which they act and the specific artifacts developed from the experiences of previous generations. Working with real life activities in the classroom promotes students’ insertion and transformation of reality. In other words, teaching-learning involves both the knowledge accumulated by previous generations in the form of scientific concepts and the understanding and perception of the role of everyday concepts and experiences in creating perejivanie - strong cognitive and emotional experience (Vigotski, 1933-34/2006, p. 383). In multilingual teaching contexts, working with activities involves learning different subject areas while, simultaneously, performing roles in social activities recreated in play inside the classroom. In order to illustrate this process, participants will play with data from a research project that works with bilingual teacher education (English-Portuguese and French-Portuguese) and create possibilities to reflect about their own contexts.

Dr. Fernanda Coelho Liberali has a PhD in Applied Linguistics from the Post-graduate Program of Applied Linguistics, of the Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo (PUC –SP/ BR), where she has worked as a professor and researcher since 2000. She holds a fellowship from Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico, a national funding agency. She was the Brazilian representative for the International Society for Cultural and Activity Research (2009-2011) and now she participates in the Global Perspectives on Learning and Development with Digital Video-Editing Media, a project funded by the Marie Curie Actions, an EU funding Agency. She acts as a consultant for the Secretariat of Education of the City of São Paulo, which involves 545 schools, and for some private schools. In a socio-historical-cultural perspective, her extramural, consultancy and research concerns are related to school management, teachers’ and teacher educators’ development, teaching-learning issues, literacy, citizenship education, multicultural education and argumentation. She has published articles, chapters and books in Portuguese, English and German. 

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Leonardos in the Classroom or a Renaissance for Teachers

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In this plenary we will explore the many facets of a teacher's tasks by drawing comparison between our profession and the traits and characteristics that made people like Leonardo da Vinci so unique. We will explore how we, too, can embody those characteristics so that they result in effective teaching for effective student learning.

WORKSHOP: Four perspectives in teacher education

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The last century saw the birth of teacher education as a profession and with it, the influx of various perspectives which many times contradicted one another. In this workshop, we will explore in depth three of those competing perspectives and attempt to rescue their most effective areas. Finally, we will put forward a fourth emerging perspective which bears the potential to bring together the old and the new.

Gabriel Diaz Maggioli is Dean of the School of Language Learning and Teaching and Director of the MATESOL program at The New School, a university in New York. His research revolves around Sociocultural Theory as applied to the development of a viable pedagogy for teacher education. 

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Communicating across cultures: encounters in the “contact zone” 

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One of the central concerns of foreign language learning is how to communicate our changing identities in languages used to express worldviews different from our own. In a context of growing intercultural communication, reading and responding to texts in which cultures come into contact can help us develop intercultural awareness, as the encounter with otherness can encourage reflection on how meanings can be communicated across cultures. 

Intercultural competence is at the core of the national guidelines (“Núcleos de aprendizaje prioritarios”) for foreign languages and is a transversal objective in foreign language curricula in different regions of Argentina. However, teachers often find it challenging to plan their classes with an intercultural focus. This presentation explores a variety of literary texts written in English in which intercultural encounters are highlighted and proposes activities and resources for the classroom which aim at developing the linguistic repertoire necessary to express our own meanings in English.

Claudia is an experienced presenter and ELT author who travels the world as a teacher educator. A graduate from the I.E.S. en Lenguas Vivas “Juan Ramón Fernández”, Buenos Aires, she holds an MA in Education and Professional Development from the University of East Anglia, and a PhD in English Studies from the University of Nottingham, UK. In Argentina, she is a lecturer at the I.E.S. en Lenguas Vivas “Juan Ramón Fernández” and on the MA programme in Literatures in English at the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, Mendoza. She also works as an ELT and Education Consultant for the British Council Argentina. In the UK, Claudia is a teacher trainer for NILE (Norwich Institute for Language Education).

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KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Roots and Routes in Developing Writers

Over the last 30 years writing has gone from being the Cinderella skill, to a core area of communication in 21st century life. Our children may not see it is as developing writing skills every time they post on Facebook, text or tweet, but these are forms of writing on an evolving continuum of spoken-written language and, as such, they influence how writing develops.
This Plenary will discuss the ‘roots’ – the range of experiences - people draw upon in developing their writing skills, including the burgeoning range of online writing contexts available today. It will then move on to consider how we as teachers can provide ‘routes’ into writing for our foreign language learners. Issues involved include background (academic, linguistic, genre etc), personal characteristics (eg expectations and approaches to learning) and the resources drawn upon (including the new concept of ‘literacy brokers’). 

WORKSHOP: Routes into writing: Developing writing skills

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There are three major perspectives in writing research in the last 30 years: writing as process, product and social activity. This workshop will look at ways of helping students develop their writing skills through exposure to activities focussing on each perspective: exploring how we write (process), what we write (product) and writing as a social and cultural activity. For continuity, the examples will be from an English for Academic Purposes context, but the workshop will be accessible to all.

The University of Reading, UK. Academic Director for the campus-based MA Applied Linguistics and MA English Language Teaching programmes; Academic Director for the MA English Language Teaching by Distance Study; Postgraduate programmes in Applied Linguistics Board of Studies Member. Clare teaches the following modules: Core Issues in English Language Teaching, Language Curriculum Design, Language Teaching Portfolio: Classroom Practical component, The Teaching of Written Language, Teaching English to Young Learners, Teaching the Language Skills, Literacy: Social, educational and cognitive perspectives. Clare currently supervises 8 PhD students in the areas of second language writing. Clare's EdD included an Institution Focused Study entitled 'Undergraduates and Technology: Uses and Attitudes', and a thesis entitled 'Masters Level Study in a British Context: Developing Writers'. Her research interests are concerned with developing second language writing skills (especially in English for Academic Purposes contexts) and on-line/distance learning. She also supervises research in the areas of curriculum design and study skills.

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Lessons from Research on Immersion Programs in Canada

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Second language immersion programs were first introduced in Canada in 1965 as an alternative and more effective approach for promoting second language proficiency. At their inception, these programs were considered radical because they not only taught the second/foreign language as a subject, but they also taught non-language subjects, such as science and mathematics, through the second language. Immersion programs can now be found in many communities around the world and have been the subject of intense and extended research attention. In this presentation, I will discuss the rationale for immersion and describe alternative forms of immersion and key features of each. I will then summarize research findings on the effectiveness of these programs. Findings from research will be used to address the following questions: How effective are immersion programs in promoting students’ proficiency in a second language? Do students’ first language skills or academic achievement suffer? Are immersion programs suitable for students with learning challenges? Is it better to start immersion early and is more exposure to the second language advantageous? Are there certain pedagogical practices that are particularly effective? The implications of these findings for program development and instruction will be discussed.

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Myths and Misunderstandings about Dual Language Acquisition in Young Learners

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There has been growing interest in children who learn language in diverse contexts and under diverse circumstances. In particular, dual language acquisition has become the focus of much research attention, arguably in response to growing awareness that dual language learning is common in children. A deeper understanding of dual language learning under different circumstances is important to ensure the formulation of theories of language learning that encompass all language learners and to provide critical information for clinical, educational, and other practical decisions that touch the lives of young language learners. This talk will review research findings on dual language learning in both school and non-school settings, among simultaneous and sequential bilinguals, and in typically-developing learners and those with an impaired capacity for language learning. Key findings with respect to common myths and misunderstandings that surround dual language acquisition in young learners will be reviewed and discussed and their implications for both theoretical and practical matters will be considered.

Fred Genesee is Professor in the Psychology Department at McGill University, Montreal. He has conducted extensive research on alternative forms of bilingual and immersion education; his current research interests include language acquisition in pre-school bilingual children, cross-language adopted children, and the language and academic development of students at-risk in bilingual programs. He has served as a consultant on second/foreign language and bilingual education in countries around the world, including Japan, Spain, Germany, Estonia, Hong Kong, Latvia, Russia, and Italy. He is the author numerous professional and scientific research reports and books, including Learning Through Two Languages: Studies of Immersion and Bilingual Education (Newbury House, 1987), Educating Second Language Children (Cambridge, 1994 ), Classroom Based Evaluation in Second Language Education (Cambridge, 1996), Beyond Bilingualism: Multilingualism and Multilingual Education (Multilingual Matters, 1998), Dual Language Instruction: A Handbook for Enriched Education (Heinle & Heinle, 2000, with Nancy Cloud and Else Hamayan), Trends in Bilingual Acquisition (John Benjamins, with J. Cenoz), and Dual Language Development and Disorders (with J. Paradis & M. & M. Crago, Brookes, 2004).  

KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: La enseñanza de las lenguas extranjeras en la construcción del plurilingüismo en América Latina

La enseñanza de las lenguas extranjeras, en su larga historia en América Latina, se ha concebido y practicado en forma bastante aislada de los contextos de multilingüismo y sus condicionantes socio-culturales y económicos. Sin embargo, los avances de la investigación interdisciplinaria ponen en relieve las complejas interrelaciones lingüísticas, cognitivas y socioeconómicas que determinan este campo y lo relacionan con dos espacios de bi y multilingüismo que se ubican en polos opuestos de la escala social: la educación indígena bilingüe y las escuelas bilingües privadas de élite, cada una con sus respectivas comunidades de sustento. Una política integradora de las lenguas y la educación tendrá que señalar de qué manera los espacios de las lenguas extranjeras, lenguas inmigrantes y lenguas indígenas podrán contribuir a una transición desde posiciones tradicionales que consideran la diversidad lingüística como un problema, hacia orientaciones y prácticas que promueven un plurilingüismo enriquecedor de las sociedades latinoamericanas en su conjunto.

WORKSHOP: Educación intercultural bilingüe indígena en México: La integración de lenguas, culturas y asignaturas

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En la charla se presentará el vídeo documental “T’arhexperakua – creciendo juntos” que relata la experiencia de un proyecto educativo p’urhepecha, un pueblo indígena mexicano, que elaboró su currículo intercultural y bilingüe propio, basado en la alfabetización y enseñanza de todas las materias en lengua indígena (L1) y la enseñanza del español como segunda lengua (L2). Desde hace más de diez años, este proyecto escolar cuenta con el acompañamiento de un equipo académico con quien desarrolló un proceso de investigación colaborativa e intervención escolar. Se discutirán con el público los temas enunciados en el título.

Profesor Titular de Lingüística, Departamento de Antropología, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM), México, D. F. Director del Programa interinstitucional “Comunidad indígena y educación intercultural bilingüe” (CIEIB), y coordinador del Proyecto permanente “Políticas del Lenguaje en América Latina” de la Asociación de Lingüistas y Filólogos de América Latina (ALFAL). Campos de investigación: bilingüismo y educación bilingüe, políticas del lenguaje, globalización y lenguas, análisis del discurso. Profesor e investigador visitante en las Universidades de Stanford, UC Santa Bárbara, UC San Diego, EEUU, Campinas y Belem, Brasil, y Frankfurt, Mannheim y Friburgo, Alemania.

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KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Building Cultural Competence in the 21st Century Student’s Toolkit

Now more than ever, understanding other cultures and using language so that we can communicate across cultures without distortion or misinterpretation are vital competencies. Intriguing questions face us as language educators such as: Can you be bilingual without being bicultural? What does it mean to be bicultural? Multicultural? What do we mean when we say that you can’t learn another language without learning its culture? What does that look like in our classrooms? As language teachers, how do we decide what students should learn about intercultural communication? When should they learn it, and how? How will we know if students have learned well?

WORKSHOP: Immersion in the US

The number of immersion programs in the US has skyrocketed in the last decade. While these programs are located throughout the country, they serve a range of purposes and enroll diverse student populations. Despite differences, one factor remains constant: because immersion programs deliver schooling through a new language, immersion teachers must be skilled as both content and language teachers. This session will provide details on program types, teacher skill sets, and include video clips of immersion classrooms.

Dr. Myriam Met is an independent consultant, having left the University of Maryland in 2008 where she was Acting Director at the National Foreign Language Center. Dr. Met has been a supervisor of foreign language programs for major urban and suburban school districts, where she was responsible for initiating and overseeing a variety of innovative programs, particularly immersion programs, including the first Mandarin immersion program in a US public elementary school. Her current work focuses on support for K-12 immersion in a variety of languages. She has served as a consultant to government agencies, universities, educational systems, and schools within the US and countries around the world. 

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KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Prácticas y repertorios plurilingües escolares: miradas desde la etnografía y la interacción

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La sociolingüística contemporánea ha mostrado que el trabajo etnográfico y el análisis interaccional pueden coexistir en una propuesta de investigación cualitativa orientada hacia la descripción de las formas en que se despliegan y se modifican los repertorios lingüísticos en contextos escolares. Para estas investigaciones, la descripción de las prácticas y repertorios plurilingües necesita no sólo considerar la mirada del investigador en la adscripción de los rasgos verbales a una lengua u a otra, sino, especialmente, el estudio de las formas en que los propios hablantes categorizan o “tratan” las formas del habla, explotando comunicativamente o bien el contraste entre sistemas verbales –base del cambio de lenguas o codeswitching-, o bien, la convergencia, potencialmente emergente en formas mixtas, híbridas o bivalentes.

Este giro epistemológico, que descentra el monolingüismo en la teoría lingüística contemporánea y pone en evidencia la necesidad de nuevas categorías para describir los códigos semióticos en juego en interacciones multilingües, impacta, creemos, en la didáctica de las lenguas, la cual se ve interpelada por nuevos datos y nuevas categorías, muchas veces incompatibles con la visión fragmentaria y parcializada de las lenguas, las culturas y sus relaciones, vigente en las propuestas actuales de enseñanza.

Es objetivo de esta ponencia poner en diálogo los resultados de estas investigaciones con algunas propuestas didácticas actuales, que recuperan la actividad, la diversidad y la interdisciplinariedad como ejes centrales de trabajo en el aula. Para ello, seexpondrán dos casos distantes y en diálogo. Por un lado, el estudio de la socialización lingüística escolar de niños y jóvenes migrados a Barcelona (2004-2009), que nos servirá para revisar tres nociones importantes para una didáctica plural de las lenguas: prácticas plurilingües; repertorios plurilingües; comunidad de habla. Por otro lado, el estudio de las interacciones bilingües en escuelas wichis del Chaco (2010-2013), las cuales nos posibilitarán adentrarnos en las relaciones complejas entre identidad, poder y aprendizaje de lenguas.

Luci Nussbaum es Licenciada en Filosofía y Letras por la Universidad de Barcelona y tiene un Doctorado en Filología Románica por la misma universidad. Profesora del Departamento de Didáctica de la Lengua, la Literatura y las Ciencias Sociales (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona) y coordinadora del equipo de investigación GREIP (Grup de Recerca en Educació i Interacció Plurilingües). Ha publicado numerosos libros y artículos y dirigido tesis doctorales en la Universidad Autònoma de Barcelona.

Virginia Unamuno es doctora en Filología por la Universidad de Barcelona y especialista en sociolingüística aplicada a la educación. Después de trabajar más de diez años en la Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, es actualmente investigadora adjunta del CONICET, donde coordina un proyecto sobre Plurilingüismo y Educación Intercultural Bilingüe en la provincia del Chaco. Su investigación se centra en el estudio del multilingüismo en contextos escolares desde una perspectiva interaccional, así como en las relaciones entre la gestión de las lenguas en las escuelas y las políticas lingüísticas y educativas. Es autora de Lenguas, escuela y diversidad sociocultural (Barcelona: Ed. Graó) y de diversos artículos en revistas especializadas.