Capital Area’s Fall Workshop a Success

Mar 22nd, 2014 | By | Category: Capital Area, Chapters
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Capital Area’s Fall Workshop a Success—
Northern Regional Coming Up

Leslie Freeland

Leslie Freeland

By LESLIE FREELAND

—The Capital Area Chapter Fall Workshop was a success! Marsha Chan, the “Pronunciation Doctor” and professor of ESL at Mission College in Santa Clara, spoke on the topic of “Concepts and Methods for Teaching Pronunciation and Listening.” She focused on what a language teacher needs to know to teach pronunciation, clearly explaining how an ESL teacher can prepare to help students speak more clearly. She enumerated essential concepts of spoken English, described basic oral language features, discussed fundamental instructional concerns, and demonstrated engaging activities. Participants left with a training framework drawn on current theory and practice as well as hands-on experience with numerous effective methods for lively and effective oral language learning.

Fourteen Japanese junior high school English teachers from UC Davis’s IEPP program—a special program just for them—were able to attend the workshop. They are here on scholarships from the MeXT program (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in Japan). The MeXT program is part of the push in Japan to improve the teaching of English oral skills. The Japanese Ministry of Education always wants the teachers to “mingle” with ESL teachers here in the US, and this workshop met that objective as well as fulfilling their intense interest in learning more about English pronunciation. In addition to authentic communication with US ESL instructors, the Japanese English teachers were also delighted to receive copies of the dictionary that was given out by the chapter. In a going-away letter from the MeXT group, they wrote: “We love you because you guided us to CATESOL world where we appreciate the importance of teaching pronunciation.”

Capital Area Chapter Fall Workshop with Marsha Chan

Capital Area Chapter Fall Workshop with Marsha Chan, the “Pronunciation Doctor” (center, in pink)

The Capital Area Chapter will be helping with the CATESOL 2014 Northern Regional Conference (hosted by OTAN) this spring in place of our regularly scheduled workshop. The conference theme is “Collaborating and Learning.” This one-day conference will be held on Saturday, April 26, 2014, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) near Rancho Cordova. Enjoy the conference as an attendee, presenter, or volunteer (or all three!).

Becoming a presenter embodies perfectly this year’s theme of collaboration and learning. Presenting is also a great experience and professional-development opportunity for MA TESOL students! Proposals on all topics relevant to the teaching of ESL will be considered. Some of the different types of presentations you might consider proposing are: a demonstration (demonstrate a practical technique), a workshop (engage the participants in hands-on, practical professional development), a paper (theory or research based), a poster board (display printed information on a board and talk informally with participants about the topic), or a panel (several presenters speak on a topic). Each presentation session will be 45 minutes. The proposal submission deadline is Sunday, March 30. You are welcome to submit as many proposals as you wish, but due to space limitations, we will be able to accept only one.

Another way to celebrate the conference theme of collaboration is by volunteering. Help with signs, food, exhibits, technical support, directions, registration, volunteer table, tote bag preparation, and more! Many volunteer opportunities are available, so please contact us through the website listed below to see to see how you can become involved.

You will find more information about the conference at the official CATESOL 2014 Northern Regional Conference website: http://catesol2014northernregional.weebly.com/. Come enjoy the conference, where we can collaborate and learn together.

The CATESOL Capital Area Chapter meets approximately eight times per year and hosts two workshops a year, one in the spring and one in the fall. Our planning meetings are on Friday evenings at local Sacramento restaurants or coffee shops. The planning meetings are for officers, volunteers, and anyone else who would like to learn more about the CATESOL Capital Area Chapter.

For information about our chapter or planning meetings, you can contact us at our new email address: CATESOLcapitalarea@gmail.com. For further details about our chapter and our upcoming events, please visit our brand-new website: http://CATESOLcapitalareachapter.weebly.com.

Leslie Freeland is coordinator of the Capital Area Chapter.

 

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