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ELF and ELT 3 years 3 months ago #64

  • nicossif
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As the 10-day period of this dialogue is brought to an end, I'd like to thank everyone for participating with thoughts, experiences, plans and ideas for the future. I think this discussion has proven that the pedagogy aspect of ELF has implications for ESOL teaching and learning that are huge and we're only just beginning to scratch the surface of the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead. I for one cannot wait to see what other great challenges lurk around the corner. So many things to wonder about...

I would like to thank Martin for collaborating with me in this, I really enjoyed it. I think that Martin and I see eye to eye on ELF teacher
education, he from the Inner Circle, me from one tiny little corner of the Expanding Circle polyhedron. I also want to thank Alessia and Marie-Luise for inviting me to this elite circle of pioneers.

I'd like to close this dialogue on my end with an urge for all colleagues to continue to send their thoughts, worries, suggestions and experiences to this forum. After all, this is what it was created for and we owe it to Alessia and Marie-Luise for their hard work and perseverance. Hope to see and "read" everyone in the months to come.

With best wishes to all for a great summer recess,

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ELF and ELT 3 years 3 months ago #65

Dear Nicos, Martin, and colleagues,
Thanks a lot both of you for this exciting discussion (despite the short time allotted - we needed more time to touch so many interesting themes), and also Alessia and Marie-Louise for the putting together the ELFRN. It is a great beginning indeed. Due to my million of things to do here I confess I could not find the proper time to participate more actively and expand on the discussions, depicting especially the contexts in "my Expanding Circle corner", as Nicos has just mentioned. As we are approaching the closing of the forum (luckily I still have some hours due to time difference) I just want to let you know that I have been following attentively the comments posed here, and tried to make the knowledge generated here circulate among my student-teachers, and also the many ELT professionals I happen to know and work with at different levels and, normally, in very diverse realities within one big reality called Brazil. As I mentioned before, what we are doing here, congregating world views in one rich environment, is to reach the regular ELT professional for him/her to start reflecting and re-thinking different issues related to the challenges of teaching a de-nationalized language like English in today's world. As Nicos wisely reminds us, we are beginning to scratch the surface of all that lies ahead of us in the area. Despite the difficulties we are to face along the way, I am absolutely sure that this is a "battle" worth fighting. Last but not least, it is exciting to me to be part of such a highly-qualified group of colleagues where the motto is full respect for one another's experiences. The athmosphere created here unites us around common goals that, naturally, do not single us out for the circle we belong to, but what we together can do to make this big circle of "shared ideas" move on and develop, respecting, among other things, diversity and local knowledge. Thanks again, all of you, and I'll be looking forward to the next forum discussion.
Sávio Siqueira
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ELF and ELT 3 years 3 months ago #66

Such nice closing words and well-deserved words of thanks that I'm reluctant to add anything but yet another big thank you. Further important questions were introduced in the last day or two, so the discussion will just have to continue! So in my best English, à bientôt! :)
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ELF and ELT 3 years 3 months ago #67

  • martin.dewey
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Thank you Barbara. Thank you again to everyone who took part and helped make this an engaging discussion forum. Thank you Nicos for being such a splendid co-moderator. Thank you Alessia and Marie-Luise for setting this up.

And in my best English: So long, farewell auf wiedersehen, adieu!

Hope to see some of you in Beijing ;)
Last Edit: 3 years 3 months ago by martin.dewey.
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ELF and ELT 3 years 3 months ago #68

  • kurt.kohn
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SCHADE, jetzt wird es so richtig interessant und wir sind schon am Ende :)

A BIG thank you to Martin and Nicos and ALL for the enlightening discussion - and please bear with me that I can't leave it at that:) I would very much like to very quickly pick up on Martin's question concerning our "own experience of ELF having acted as a catalyst for change in thinking and/or practice".

As long as language learning and communication are confined to the foreign language classroom language learning will remain "foreign" language learning. We need to open the classroom to authentic ELF communication. I would argue intercultural telecollaboration can play a key role in this development. Paola and Roberto already mentioned videoconferencing (Skype) etc. in this connection.

Over the past two years I have been involved in the EU project TILA, which is about using telecollaboration tools (from 3D virtual worlds in OpenSim to videoconferencing in BigblueButton to chat and forum/blog in Moodle) in order to enable secondary school students to get in touch and communicate with peers in other countries. Initially, the language format preferred by most teachers was - not surprisingly - "tandem", i.e. non-native/native pairs. We then also introduced the "lingua franca" format, mainly for English and German, and convinced teachers we were coaching to try it out with their pupils. The success was overwhelming:

(1) Students communicated spontaneously exloiting their linguistic and communicative resources and skills as best and as creatively as the could - very much in line with all our predictions from ELF research.

(2) Teachers (including those who were initially reluctant to take part) were impressed by the richness and diversity of their students' communicative performance under lingua franca conditions found that their doubts and reservations were not justified.

(3) Teachers were increasingy able to acknowledge the pedagogic value of the "lingua franca approach" and its potential for engaging their students in authentic and self-guided communication and for helping them to "explore and trust their own non-native speaker creativity" - [my words, Kohn 2015 :)]

(4) Towards the end of the project around 90% of all our telecollaboration exchanges were in the lingua franca format.

We are now in the report writing phase. In case you want to know more - or take part in future telecollaboration activities, please get in touch:

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ELF and ELT 3 years 3 months ago #69

  • alessia.cogo
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thank you so much to Martin and Nicos for moderating the Forum and doing it so brilliantly! And thank you all for participating! It seems we all agree that the engagement and the discussion were very interesting and what a great start to our online participation! We look forward to more discussions like this in future.

Just a note: we have been overwhelmed with requests to join the Forum. We have not been able to abilitate everybody yet and some people just contacted us too late, but we will do so before the next forum.

Thank you again and have a great summer! B)
The ReN convenors
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