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Classroom Observations

The purpose of this posting is to reflect on the numerous occasions in which I have been observed by my supervisors and peers to illustrate what has worked and has not worked in helping me become a better educator. As I plan to be a teacher educator in the near future, conducting classroom observations is a skill that usually isn't acquired before becoming a supervisor or administrator.
I have been formally observed in two different jobs, my first full-time teaching job in Japan and my first teacher training job in South Korea. I have also been formally observed as a teaching assistant at the University of Iowa. Although these classes had very little to do with ESL or EFL, they were teacher education classes on technology in the classroom.
First Teaching Job The most stressful experience of being observed was at my first job, of course, because I was a new teacher. My first three days on the job consisted of orientation, which included of training sessions and closely observed …

A Multiliteracies Approach to Second Language Teaching and Learning

On Saturday, April 30th I presented a literature review that combines multiliteracies and second language teaching and learning for the 2011 Second Language Acquisition Graduate Student Symposium at the University of Iowa. This presentation is the more theoretical complement to the more practical presentation I gave last fall for MIDTESOL in Dubuque, IA.
Multiliteracies is my second research interest area, so it is a topic that I will not be investigating for my dissertation. However, I have a very strong interest in multiliteracies, especially in applying the multiliteracies approach (MLA) to the ESL or EFL classroom. When I get the opportunity to teach ESL and EFL again, I will try to implement this approach if applicable to the program. Also, when I get the opportunity to educate pre-service and in-service ESL or EFL instructors, I hope to create a unit or a course addressing multiliteracies.
Here is the link to the handout for the SLA Graduate Student Symposium.

Incorporating Skeptical Thinking into the Classroom

Here is my presentation for the International TESOL Convention in New Orleans, Louisiana on March 18, 2011. Below the presentation, you will find a link to the handout I distributed. This presentation is an update to a similar one I gave at the 2009 MIDTESOL Conference in Springfield, Missouri.

Incorporating Skeptical Thinking into the Classroom on Prezi This is the link to the handout.
The 2-page handout is a PDF, so you will need Adobe Reader to view it. Click here to download the latest version of Adobe Reader.
Response to questions raised during the presentation: After the presentation, I realized that 2 points should have been made clearer: 1) the reading ability of the students, and 2) the course objectives. I have described these below and I believe this will make it easier to understand how far along the students were in terms of reading the ability to think critically.
I may have made the wrong assumption that most attendees were familiar with ACTFL's proficiency standards,…