Before 28 years ago Alan Maley triggered the creation of IATEFL Poland, Polish teachers hadn’t had much opportunity to take part in continuous professional development. Several INSETT programs had no chance to inspire the big crowds of teachers.
Early on, IATEFL Poland members used to be mainly university teachers, coming from the departments of applied linguistics or Teachers Training Colleges. Thus young teachers had the best chances of being infected with IATEFL virus.
Good news is the virus keeps on spreading onto new generations, this time more often of public schools and private language school teachers, and is highly contagious. However now, the challenge is the competition in the ELT services is getting higher. More and more institutions are offering courses and organizing conferences and currently around 10 various ELT events are being organized every week.
With almost 75,000 teachers of English in public schools and estimated 200.000 of all ELT professionals in total in Poland we are reaching merely a fraction of the whole lot, but probably those who are the most devoted to the improvement of the quality teaching. Almost every our conference gathers over 1000 participants, which makes it the most popular ELT event in continental Europe.
It is best known for its friendly and relaxed atmosphere, where foreign language teachers from Poland and abroad are able to network, discuss and socialise. Every year the conference is held in a different city and the 28th one takes place in the beautiful city of Gdansk, at the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Gdansk. We cordially invite you to the 28th IATEFL Poland Conference in Gdansk.
Could there be a better place to explore this year’s conference motto BEYOND THE HORIZON than a coastal city with a thousand-year history? Let us meet at the University of Gdansk to discover the best from the vast sea of professional experience being presented, and move ahead to meet the expectations of the future generations of learners. Do not miss this opportunity to find out what awaits us beyond the horizon of contemporary language education. This three-day event will start with several pre-conference events and participants will have a unique chance to take part in live lessons, where teachers may observe classes run by rank and file members as well as methodology gurus. Nowhere else in Poland and only in few places worldwide will you be able to experience such intensive three days. We also run several Advanced English Lessons for teachers as a remarkable opportunity to have hands-on experience with the language we are teaching. Apart from plenaries and workshops, the conference’s repertoire includes poster presentations, panels and debates.
The conference is obviously the cherry on top of our activities however, it must be noted that recent years have shown a spectacular outburst of local activities of all kinds which are frequented by crowds. English for Specific Purposes January conference has been organized recently as the 6th in the row and there follow a Global Issues Forum For Teachers as well as Business English Event (this year on 11th of May in Krakow).
Apart from the plenty of half-day events spread all around Poland (around 100 each year), including ICT, culture, methodology and applied linguistics workshops IATEFL Poland aims at organizing steady events and here we come with “IATEFL Poland Inspirations for Teachers” series. These are cyclical tours of renowned teacher trainers. This Spring it was Mark Andrews with our Young Learners SIG coordinator Urszula Kropaczewska who visited three cities leading the workshops and live lessons themed “Understanding our classrooms, understanding ourselves…” And summer will embrace us with a tour by Hugh Dellar with Advanced Lessons and a workshop on Lexical Approach and NNSTs.
Yet another initiative aiming at our online supporters are monthly webinars where we invite such great speakers as Maria Sanchapazian, Evan Frendo, Alicja Gałązka or Aleksandra Zaparucha. You may want to know more about our scheduled webinars here: https://iateflpl.clickmeeting.com/
This year marks the 5th edition of Public Speaking Contest for middle and secondary school students who this year are being challenged with a thought-provoking topic “Things I wish were taught at school”, which is more than appropriate at the time when a nation-wide debate on education is storming through Poland. With semifinals being organized across the country we are hoping to see at least 20 finalists the annual conference in Gdansk on the 20th September this year.
We are proud that every year we may also offer our services to senior students who are invited to take part in “Culture lane for senior students” – a summer course for B1 students who cherish Life Long Learning values.
That’s what we do, hoping to reach our fellow teachers with up-to-date news on methodology and pedagogy! Teachers for teachers!