by Alex Cann, Academic Manager in Edinburgh
On 26th November Edinburgh Language Centre hosted their first Eaquals funded CPD day. All 50 places were sold and the event attracted EFL professionals from across Scotland with some delegates also travelling from Oxford and Manchester.
The programme offered a wide selection of talks and workshops covering topics such as Storytelling (Jamie Keddie), Teaching Grammar Lexically (Hugh Dellar), Digital Games (Paul Driver) and Assessing and Giving Feedback on Writing (Jo Gakonga).
The two headline speakers, Jamie Keddie and Hugh Dellar, delivered live demonstration lessons after their talks where delegates were given the opportunity to watch them put theory into practice with real students.
The afternoon electives ended with everyone coming together for a poetry reading session with Colin Mcguire, local teacher and poet, which was followed by Pecha Kucha style presentations. Jamie Keddie then ended the day with a plenary on ‘Video and Storytelling’.
During breaks delegates were able to browse exhibition stands from publishers, suppliers and institutions from across the UK including Cambridge University Press, Cambridge Assessment, Bournemouth English Book Centre, Oxford University Press and National Geographic Learning.
The event ended with a drinks reception sponsored by Bournemouth English Book Centre. This acted as a final networking session where delegates enjoyed discussing the topics covered in talks and speaking to presenters and publishers.
Our Edinburgh team would like to thank Eaquals for funding the event and sending Jo Watson, member of Eaquals Board of Trustees, who was available throughout the day to give information about Eaquals and the benefits of membership and accreditation.
Feedback from the delegates
"As a teacher, I’ve been to quite a few conferences, but this one was probably one of the best and most useful conferences I have attended. There was an excellent selection of talks covering everything from using stories and video games in class to exam preparation classes, all of which were engaging and informative - some even challenging the way we teach to help us reflect on what’s really happening in the classroom. However, what made the day different from other conferences I’ve attended was that we were able to see the main speakers in a live classroom with real EFL students – a peer observation of the experts at work!" Nadia Falou, Manchester Academy of English
"A really excellent day. Well organised, very well attended and cleverly put together. The live lessons in particular were an excellent innovation that helped to root the more theoretical nature of the talks in practical classroom realities." Hugh Dellar, Headline Speaker
"What I particularly liked was the fact that there was a wide cross-section of people from different institutions around the UK at the event. The variation in the delivery kept the sessions interesting and informative – talks, Pecha Kucha presentations, and teaching observations. It was a friendly, collaborative atmosphere. We are keen to participate in future events." Teresa Keane – OUP
"Congratulations on putting together a great conference Alex. I think that you chose a winning format with the prefect balance between the practical, the theoretical and of course the fun. I was very happy to be involved and I'm sure that you will be able to build on its success for another conference next year." Jamie Keddie, Headline Speaker