Drama, clowns and all that jazz at conference
Imagine if you could hold the attention of the students in your language class like that — hanging on to your every word, waiting in anticipation for the end and yet not wanting the end to come. Or on a day when your language lesson seems particularly dreary even to yourself, have you ever wished that something would happen to transform the classroom into a carnival site, with clowns and magicians, drama and poetry or puppets talking to you. Or how about this. An actual jazz pianist singing a lesson about verbs and adjectives to you. Well, all this may not be as impossible as it sounds.
Come Sept 18 to 20 the ICELT 2011 (International Conference for English Language Teaching) will actually make some of your teaching dreams come true. With the theme of “Teaching English as a Performing Art” this conference will be a unique combination of the performing arts and English language teaching and will see a gathering of some of the world’s best known names in juggling, storytelling, drama, clowns and performance poetry.
Carolyn Graham who is the creator of Jazz Chants, is one of the confirmed speakers at the conference. Graham who has taught at Harvard University and New York Teachers college, is also the writer of numerous English language teaching books, most notably Jazz Chants and Let’s Sing, Let’s Chant, published by Oxford University Press. She has also created a delightful collection of chants, songs, and poems that employ the natural language that children use and provide a way of improving students’ speaking and listening skills.
Another famous name is Jan Blake. She is one of the world’s leading storytellers, who has been performing worldwide since 1986 and has a reputation for dynamic, witty and exciting storytelling, specialising in stories from Africa and the Caribbean. She also works regularly with the British Council, leads storytelling masterclasses for emerging storytellers, gives workshops for teachers and school children, and devises teaching tools through storytelling for the TEFL market.
She is also the 2011 recipient of the biannual ThuringeMachenPreis, awarded to scholars or performers who have devoted their lives to the service of storytelling .
The conference will also feature Steve Skidmore and Steve Barlow, collectively known as The Two Steves. They are British collaborative writers who mostly work in the field of children’s literature. They have authored more than 70 well known book series including: Lost Diaries, Mad Myths, Outernet and many more. Introducing teachers to the art of using clowning in the language classroom will be modern-day Court Jester and facilitator, Vivian Gladwell who lives and works in France and teaches clowning with the Bataclown. Gladwell discovered clowning in 1978 and founded Nose to Nose in 1990 to promote a new approach to teaching in the UK and elsewhere.
Other well-known names include Judith Dillon who has taught at ELS - Oklahoma City since 1976, and has never ceased to be a dynamo in the classroom. Dillon channels her incredible energy into making the classroom experience active and invigorating, while also assisting her students to reach their language goals.
Andrew Wright who is also an author, illustrator, teacher trainer and storyteller will be speaking at the conference. As a teacher trainer he has worked with teachers in 30 countries and as a story teller he has worked with approximately 35,000 students in the last five years. The ICELT 2011 conference is organised by the Faculty of Educational Studies, Universiti Putra Malaysia and supported by the Education Ministry. For more information please visit the website
www.icelt.com.my or call 03-89468172 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 03-89468172 end_of_the_skype_highlighting.