Launching a Practical ELT Journal: ELTI

If you’re not able to get to our annual conference, we’ve got a solution for you: the English Language Teaching Ideas Journal. It’ll come out a few months have the conference, but what we’ve put together for you ‘live’ will be on paper for you to use. We’re pretty excited about this new venture with the Department of Language Pedagogy and Cultural Studies in Nitra!

Learning together, Teaching together

In cooperation with the Department of Language Pedagogy and Intercultural Studies of Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra (Slovakia), Slovenská komora angličtinárov/the Slovak Chamber of English Teachers (SKA) is pleased to announce the launch of a new annual English language teaching journal. ‘English Language Teaching Ideas’ (ELTI) will be an annual online publication of practical articles (by our conference speakers and others) published for our members.

SKA invites you to submit an article for the first issue of ELTI. The klis
publication is going to be peer-reviewed and published electronically, with an ISBN. The first issue will be kindly edited by our colleagues at our partner institution – the Department of Language Pedagogy and Intercultural Studies at the Faculty of Education (KLIS), Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra.

The purpose of the publication is to record and compile practical ideas which have worked well in your English language classes and bring them to your colleagues…

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Under the Auspices…

If you haven’t heard the news yet, we’ve got a friend in high places! And we’re grateful for his support. Even if it’s just moral support, it’s better than none 🙂

Learning together, Teaching together

We are pleased to announce that our first prejav3_cconference will be taking place under the auspices of the President of the Slovak Republic, Andrej Kiska. We are grateful for his support!


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Getting them to read!

Interview by Marja Juhola

In this age of computer games, YouTube and non-stop internet, getting children to sit down and pick up a book or a magazine to read can be a struggle. One private language centre in Malacky, Slovakia, decided to try and put together a project to get their YLs reading. We (SKA) spoke to Andrea Chabrečková (AC), the school owner and director, to find out more.

SKA: What was the aim of the project?

AC: This was just an experiment. Firstly, we wanted to show kids that reading could be fun, interesting and challenging. We also wanted to boost children’s self-confidence and we did! From a language learning point of view, reading is an excellent way to consolidate new language as well as to learn new vocabulary.

SKA: So tell us how you went about it.

AC: First we chose a selection of language learning magazines aimed at young learners (Friendship, Hello!, Hello Kids!, Hurra!). Children were encouraged to order 3 issues of the magazine that suited their age and level best. Each week over a 4-week period 2 questions for each magazine were published (FB, school noticeboard), and the children were encouraged by their teachers to answer them. Teachers could help but not give them the correct answers. Answers were put in a box provided for this purpose. In order to win a prize at the end of the 4 weeks, they needed to have answered all 8 questions.

10155965_1133048560044762_499626239588902916_nSKA: What did parents say about having to pay for the magazines?

AC: Most were happy to do it. As an extra incentive, we also offered a “prize” for the parents: the winning children received a discount for a course next semester. This helped to motivate the adults too!

SKA: How would you evaluate the project?

AC:  It was a great success! It created a positive competitive atmosphere at school with 10171115_1132924360057182_5555829486358692270_n99% of our children participating. There was always a lot of excitement in the corridor when new questions were published. I believe we achieved our main aim: to get students enthusiastic about reading and to show them that they are able to read and understand a foreign language. Using material that was up-to-date and relevant certainly made it more interesting for them.

SKA: What advice would you give to schools/teachers who might want to try something similar?

AC: I would definitely recommend it. It is important to have the support of teachers and parents. We need to teach children by example: if we are enthusiastic about reading, children will follow!

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Summer learning opportunities

Want to know what webinars and online courses are available this summer? Vicky Papageorgiou has put them all in one place!


Summer is ahead and soon most of us will find some time to relax and spend time with the family. It is also a great opportunity for professional development, with all this free time in our hands, if we want to learn something new or to deepen our knowledge in a subject, acquire some new skills.

MOOCs and webinars are available in abundance and they are generally free or for a small amount of money if you are asking for a certificate. I have compiled a list for June, July and August that I think you might find helpful. I am sure there are a few more out there, so feel free to let me know and I will update the list.

In the end of the list, I am also including some self-paced MOOCs which, in other words, do not start at a fixed date but you can jump…

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Recap of Interesting Resources and Blog Posts – May 2015

Compiled by Marja Juhola.

Yet another month has gone by and it is time for our round-up of all things ELT.

Professional Development Events

  • Eltforum is coming up next weekend. If you haven’t registered yet, you’d better get a move on as the registration ends today!
  • The Call for Speakers for our own very conference is on! The deadline for proposals is 15 June 2015 so you still got a bit of time to get yours in. 11205143_1625249801052643_1672374314206441420_nParticipant registration is also now open – Early Bird until 5 July!
  • The Teachers of English in Austria are planning their next conference – ELT Frameworks in Graz, Austria in April 2016. Get your speaker proposal in! FB event page and more info here.
  • Announcing the Call for Papers for the fourth edition of The Image Conference!
    This time in Munich on 5th December – who’s going?

Ideas for the Classroom

  • A great idea for a classroom or even a school corridor! How would our students complete the sentence ‘I wish I had the courage to…’ We’re sure we’d learn a lot.
  • Teaching idioms? This is great!
  • Do you always start you class in the same way? Time for a change? See here for 12 ideas.
  • Some more warm-up ideas here.
  • If you’ve ever had to teach a lesson about clothing, Naoko Araki Amano has some brilliant ideas for getting students engaged, and talking and writing!


End-of-Year Stuff

Interesting Reading/Watching/Listening

  • What do they say about hindsight? If you could write a letter to your younger teacher self, what would you tell yourself? What would you have wanted to know?  Joanna Malefaki got just that idea and she and some other colleagues from around the world have written that letter.
  • The latest issue of a FREE journal (pdf download): the Malaysian Journal of ELT Research. Table of contents: pg 9 (published by Malaysian English Language Teachers’ Association).bad-grade
  • In case you missed this week’s Am TESOL Free Friday Webinar- 15+ Digital Writing Tools & Resources Download the pdf and access the bookmarks!  and find all 200+ video recordings here. And if you want to find out about many of the excellent FREE ELT webinars that are available out there, join Webinars for English Teachers.
  • If you have dyslexic students, you may find this webinar recording interesting: Judit Kormos and Joanna Nijakowska: Successful inclusion for dyslexic students in the English language classroom. If you have dyslexic adult students, Jenny Harris’ blog post has some good ideas and links to more info.
  • Our sister organization in Austria, TEA, has just posted the spring issue of their magazine, ELT News. It’s chock full of excellent and practical articles. Check it out?before
  • According to the Global Language Monitor, as of January 1, 2014, there were 1,025,109.8 words in the English language. That was 17 months ago. There are more now and here they are!
  • Erasers? Good or bad? Read this and see what cognitive scientist Guy Claxton thinks.
  • Our sister association in Serbia has its newsletter out.
  • Doug Lemov believes great teachers are made, not born, and his ideas are transforming education. Listen to what he has to say.
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1st SKA ELT Conference – Call for Speaker Proposals!

We’ve got a conference! The call for speakers is OPEN and all English language teachers are invited to submit proposals for practical 45-minute workshops on ideas that they’ve used and which have worked with their students. Come one, come ALL!

Learning together, Teaching together

Conference poster

The Slovak Chamber of English Teachers (SKA) is excited to invite English teachers from Slovakia, central Europe and around the world to share their expertise at its inaugural ELT conference the 25th and 26th of September 2015 with Péter Medgyes,Barbara Hoskins Sakamoto and David Fisher at the Faculty of Arts, Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovakia. (Registration for participants starts 1 June 2015.)

Call for Speakers

We at SKA believe that both teaching and learning are collaborative processes. We learn from each other, as well as learn better together. Our teaching can also be better informed by sharing our experiences, our insights, our wisdom, and our challenges with each other.

And so, we invite YOU to share those practical tips and insights in teaching English that you have learned and used with your students and in your classrooms. We’d like to hear what you have discovered works with…

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Recap of Interesting Resources and Blog Posts – April 2015

Compiled by Marja Juhola


Ladies and Gentlemen, ELT colleagues of all ages, presenting the Slovak Chamber 11037576_1620837291493894_9162396100143125120_oof English Teachers’ very first call for speakers for its inaugural annual conference in September!

Submit your proposal for one of the 4 areas we’re focusing on this year, and maybe you too will be able to say: yes, I was there when it all began! Everything you need to know is here. Conference date: 25-26 September Where: Filozofická fakulta UK v Bratislave Deadline for submissions: June 15

We are also very pleased to introduce Ilona Kvietocek Sostronek, SKA’s new membership secretary. Welcome a  board!

Teaching Ideas

  • In this post, Adam Simpson considers what to do when faced with making gap fills that we find in books more meaningful and how to inspire some creative thinking when completing them.
  • Great pron help here from Adrian Underhill.
  • Looking for some conversation starters for your B2+ learners? Graham Hendrey’s got some great ones on his Pinterest page! Check it out!
  • The question our students should be asking themselves: “Am I working hard or hardly working?” Check out Vicki Hollett’s latest video!
  • If you thought using TED Talks in your classroom would be a bit tough, think again. Andrew Gaun Jones has done a bunch of the planning for us!
  • FREE RESOURCE! online ELT magazine, complete with articles, interviews and podcasts. Check out the EFL Magazine!
  • “I Wish my teacher knew” – here’s a way to both practice the ‘I wish’ structure and gain insight into our students lives.
  • 57 Ways To Sign Off On An Email – a useful post if you teach email writing.

10987647_1609027109341579_1960597502971913432_oProfessional Development

  • Good advice for new teachers by Crissy Smith: “The truth is there is no master’s degree or advice that can compensate for experience. With every new year and new crop of students, new challenges will arise.”
  • TESOL Quarterly March issue is available here.
  • A Coursera course on supporting children with difficulties in reading and writing.
  • NILE Online offers tutor-led online courses for language teachers. Check out their website for further info.

Interesting Stuff

11146552_1619187628325527_3835727134240681012_nConferences and events

  • Coming to Tuzla in June: the 3rd TETA BiH Conference! Click here to register.
  • ELTForum is coming up in June – register here.
  • Educafe has opened in BA – check it out!
  • Banska Bystrica, Kosice and Bratislava teachers, you’ve got a real treat coming this month: Carol Read! Carol is great with YLs. She’ll be doing workshops on Creativity and communication through story and drama AND How to succeed with projects. Registration required! Banska Bystrica: Wed 13. 5. 2015, 1-4pm Kosice: Thurs 14.5.2015, 9-12 Bratislava: Friday 15.5.2015, 9-12


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