Thursday, 8 November 2007

Tokyo bookfair/Expo

An annual event that I strongly encourage our teachers to attend. We can join in workshops where authors develop ideas for using their books & materials; we can pick up new ideas for teaching different areas such as phonetics; we can find out about new trends and technology; we can discuss teaching philosophies with our peers; we can meet the publishers and see what is new on the shelf.

And quite a lot more. I have a lot of friends working in the profession - as authors, salespeople, teacher-trainers, etc - and the bookfair is a good excuse to socialise as well, network a bit, and make sure everyone knows Luna International is going strong. It strikes me as odd that other schools do not take advantage of this weekend, because even though I've been going regularly for the last 15 years, there's always something new to pick up.

This year my staff & I attended the following presentations:
  • Magical keys to the world of the Oxford Reading Tree (Setsuko Toyama). Setsuko has presented at Luna in the past, and will be coming back in 2008. Luna uses the Story Tree series of readers, which are better for students. Have a look at the display in the school?
  • Teaching reading to Children (Jason Good).
  • Task-based learning and authentic news reports (Daniel Ferreira).
  • Tips for teaching JHS/HS with 'My First Passport' (Jon Robinson)
  • What students really need for the TOEIC (Grant Trew). Grant presented at Luna early this year, and is a source of excellent exam-taking skills... doesn't have to be TOEIC!
  • Three worlds unite - using literature in the EFL classroom (Michael Stout). Several good ideas to connect readers with the 'real' world.
  • What else can you do with stories? (Tomomi Katsuki).
  • Fun supplementary activities for kids classroom (Hugh Graham-Marr)
  • Thinking beyond the story - exploring graded readers (Richard Attwood)
  • Developing confidence in early readers (Patrick Jackson). This the inspiring author of Potato Pals (new link on the right), who is a very good presenter & also coming to Luna in 2008.
Jim also went to a meeting of school owners, where a few interesting things were discussed - including the death of NOVA of course! We did of course have a couple of pints with old friends in the pub as well, where all the best business is done anyway. We met Trevor Jones, the owner of King's Road English School in Akasaka - venue for KET & PET exams in a couple of weeks.

All in all a very good weekend; think you'll agree Luna's teachers try harder than most.

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