JALT National Pre-Conference My Share + Annual General Meeting (AGM)

JALT National Pre-Conference My Share +
Annual General Meeting (AGM)

Date: November 12 (Sat.), 2016.
Time: 13:30~15:30 pm (AGM: 15:45-16:30)
Venue:  Matsumoto City Tourist Information Office 2F  (One block south of Matsumoto Castle.) 松本市市民活動サポートセンター
Admission:  This will be a free event, all interested parties are welcome.  これは無料イベントとなり、気になる方是非来てください。

JALT National Pre-Conference My Share + AGM

At our November event, members presenting at JALT National will share their research, and Damian Gowland will talk about his experience on a CELTA course in the Galapagos Islands. We will also hold our Annual General Meeting, which includes a report on the state of the chapter and an election for next year’s officers.


Miguel Mision – Mobile Assisted Language Learning for Young Learners.

While MALL offers many opportunities for language learners to communicate and exchange ideas with each other, there have been few developments for elementary or beginner level learners who have not reached the communicative ability necessary for iCALL. Many applications are created using dated memorisation and quiz designs. This presentation will explore key design features of MALL for young learners and how they are currently and could be utilized for learning.

Miguel Mision has been teaching English at elementary schools in Japan for 8 years. He completed a Masters degree in TESOL, graduating with first class honors and focused his dissertation on Mobile Assisted Language Learning. He is the current webmaster for JALT Shinshu Chapter.


Gregory Birch – JTEs’ and ALTs’ views on teaching materials

This study continues earlier research (Birch, 2008) into the state of team teaching in Japanese junior and senior high schools by examining textbook usage, lesson preparation and materials selection in team-teaching contexts, and professional development among ALTs.  Results are based on surveys completed by 120 Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) and 80 Japanese Teachers of English (JTEs) during the Skills Development Conference in two prefectures, and interviews to further explore survey results.

Gregory Birch, a professor at Seisen Jogakuin College in Nagano, Japan, has presented and written articles on Task-Based Learning and teacher training. He is the current Program Chair for JALT Shinshu Chapter.


Damian Gowland Training abroad: CELTA

In this presentation I will talk about my experiences on the CELTA course in the Galapagos Islands. This presentation will cover aspects of the course, professional development and the benefits of training abroad.

Damian Gowland has been teaching English at a private language school in Matsumoto, teaching learners of all abilities from the age of 2 up to adults. He is a trained Cambridge English speaking examiner for YLEs, KET, PET, FCE, CAE & CPE exams. He is the current Publicity Chair for JALT Shinshu Chapter.

Inquiries: Gregory Birch (gbirch@seisen-jc.ac.jp)
Signup for the event via facebook here
See JALT.org events calendar for latest details.

場所は、JALTのホームページのイベントカレンダーから検索できます (JALT.org)


Event Report: Teaching Debate


Shinshu JALT would like to thank Mr. Ikegami, high school English teacher and founding member of the High School English Debate Association (HEnDA), for sharing his 20-plus years of debating experience with us in an informative and entertaining workshop on September 22 in Matsumoto.

Mr. Ikegami began by introducing himself and giving a brief overview of the situation of high school English debate. HEnDA is the biggest association in Japan and sponsors policy debates among high school teams. Teams spend months researching difficult topics; this year’s topic is Basic Income. In contrast, the Parliamentary Debate Association (PDA) promotes a style of debate appropriate for English classrooms. PDA was the focus of Mr. Ikegami’s workshop.

In PDA style, there are two teams, Government and Opposition. Each team consists of 3-4 members and, after receiving a topic, has 15 minutes to prepare arguments which will be judged on content and style. There is no time to research the topics, so the arguments are generally supported by common sense and personal experiences. Students are given the structure of speaker order, content and time. Each team presents three speeches, and the total time for the debate is just over 15 minutes.

Mr. Ikegami then divided the workshop participants into four teams (for conducting a debate twice), handed out worksheets designed to help each speaker cover the required content parts, and set us to work on the day’s topic: “It is better for university admission test takers to have a boyfriend/girlfriend.” We enjoyed team discussions of the ups and downs of high school romance, prepared our speeches, and nervously stood in the shoes of students. It was challenging and fun!

This workshop was a very worthwhile two hours for anyone who has tried or thought about trying debate in English language classrooms. Greg noted that although he teaches debate, he had never participated in one. I suspect that most participants thought about how to bring PDA into their classrooms on the way home that afternoon, unless, like me, they were still thinking about ways they could have improved their own debate speeches!

Mr. Ikegami’s talent for clear speaking and passion for debate were clear throughout this workshop. I for one hope he will be come back to answer specific questions and offer advice to those of us who have decided to give PDA a try in our classrooms.

  • Reported by Colleen Dalton