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« Back to School 2012: Sunday, April 22 @OGU | Main | Back to School 2012: Call for Presentations »
Saturday
Mar312012

Motivation and Negotiated Syllabuses: Two presentations by Andy Boon

Saturday, 7 April 2012, 6:00 - 8:30 pm
 
Speaker: Andy Boon

Two presentations by Andy Boon, a Featured Speaker at JALT 2011 (followed by dinner at a nearby restaurant):

1. Here we are now, Motivate us

You walk into the classroom. The students are at the back chatting with friends, sitting in silence, checking their phones, or resting their heads on the desks. Then, suddenly, the bell sounds. It is the start of the class. How do we as teachers change the classroom dynamic to one where learning can take place for all concerned? How do we create an environment and experience that will spark our students' natural curiosity and eagerness to develop? Once in action, how can we help nurture and sustain their interest throughout the lesson when learner motivation is constantly at threat. This presentation will provide an overview of Dörnyei's motivational teaching practice model (2001), describe its practical application in the L2 classroom, and explore strategies for generating, maintaining and protecting student motivation. The audience will be invited to share their own experiences of and suggestions for stimulating teen spirit.

2. Negotiated syllabuses: Do you want to?

It has been said that negotiated syllabuses can increase student motivation and involvement in the learning process. And yet, learner and teacher reservations towards gaining or relinquishing control of syllabus design decisions can often mean that negotiated syllabuses are difficult to implement. This presentation will look at three different teaching contexts in which negotiated syllabuses (or certain elements of negotiation) have been implemented (business courses, extension center courses, and university courses). It will describe the results of a qualitative research study into whether teachers and students really want to negotiate syllabuses. Finally, the audience will be invited to share their own experiences by answering the questions; have you and do you want to?

Andrew Boon is an associate professor in the faculty of humanities at Toyo Gakuen University. He has been teaching in Japan for over 14 years and is an Aston University PhD student. He has been an active member of JALT since 2004, has presented at numerous conferences, and has published several articles on teacher development, motivation, and methodology. At the time of writing, he is currently working on a new coursebook, Discover the News with David Harrington (Language Solutions, 2011).

Location: 
Namba Shimin Gakushu Center (Osaka City Municipal Lifelong Learning Center - Namba Branch), (O-CAT 4F, 06 6643-7010)
Fee for JALT members: Free
Fee for one-day members: 1,000 yen (500 yen for students)

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Reader Comments (1)

Here's a short message and recap of the event from Andy Boon:

Thank you very much Osaka JALT for inviting me down to Kansai for two presentations on April 7th. Thank you for your input and your hospitality.

In the first presentation, we discussed questions such as what motivation is and why some students may not be motivated to study English. I then provided an overview of Maslow's "Hierarchy of needs" and Dornyei's "Motivational teaching practice" and how they relate to English language teaching in our context (Please see Dornyei, Z. (2001). Motivational strategies in the language classroom, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press for further details). The audience then got to try out a number of activities to use in the classroom and discuss the motivational rationale behind each one. If you missed the presentation, check out the January 2012 edition of Modern English Teacher which has a full write-up of "Here we are, now motivate us."

In the second presentation, we looked at the role of negotiation in syllabus design. I described three contexts in which I have used a negotiated syllabus; business English classes, extension center classes, and university classes. Although university syllabuses have to be written before teachers actually meet the students of the class, I explored ways to negotiate projects, homework, groupings, methodology, and material. If you missed this presentation, check out my chapter in Paul Nation and John McAlister`s (2011) Case studies in language curriculum, Routledge.

Well, just time to say thank you again to Osaka JALT and I hope to see you all again in the not so distant future.

April 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBob Sanderson

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