University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

NEWS RELEASE

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phone: (715) 836-4741
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UW-Eau Claire Hopes to Attract
Mainstream Teachers to WITESOL Conference

 MAILED:  Sept. 4, 2003

EAU CLAIRE — Dr. Kate Reynolds and Beth Ernst hope they can convince elementary school teachers and middle and high school teachers in all content areas to share their experience and ideas at the 2003 WITESOL conference, “Blending Shades of Meaning: Converge Construct Confer,” to be held Oct. 17 and 18 in Davies Center at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

WITESOL is the Wisconsin affiliate of the global education association Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, and although many teachers may think this conference is only for ESL teachers, Reynolds, director of TESOL and campus coordinator of ESL programming at UW-Eau Claire, said one of the goals of the conference is to create a nexus of ESL and mainstream teachers.

“The field of TESOL has been undergoing some stimulating educational developments recently and we need our content colleagues to collaborate with us in order to develop further instructional practices and research,” Reynolds said, adding that she hopes all teachers who have non-native speakers of English in their classrooms will consider participating.

Education students and classroom volunteers also are invited to attend.

Reynolds is conference co-chair along with Ernst, a lecturer and ESL coordinator in UW-Eau Claire’s department of foreign languages, and both said this year’s conference will feature a number of stimulating workshops and presentations, as well as special plenary speakers Dr. Neil Anderson and Kathleen Graves, publishers’ exhibits, a wine and cheese reception, and a raffle.

Anderson, a professor in the MA TESOL program and academic coordinator of the English Language Center at Utah’s Brigham Young University, has presented papers and workshops at conferences in over a dozen countries. He is the author of a teacher education text titled “Exploring Second Language Reading: Issues and Strategies” (1999, Heinle & Heinle) and a new EFL reading series “ACTIVE Skills for Reading,” Books 1-4 (2002, Heinle & Heinle). Anderson recently returned from Costa Rica as a Fulbright Fellow conducting research and teaching. He served as President of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. 2001-2002.

Graves is an associate professor at the School for International Training in Brattleboro, Vermont, where she teaches courses in curriculum design, methodology and linguistics. She has worked with teachers and teacher educators around the world and oversaw the development of the SIT TESOL Certificate now being offered at sites in Japan, Australia, Thailand, Brazil, Lithuania, Romania, Costa Rica, and throughout the United States. She is the editor/author of two books on curriculum design — “Teachers as Course Developers” (Cambridge University Press) and “Designing Language Courses: A Guide for Teachers” (Heinle/ITP) — and is the editor of the new TESOL series on curriculum development.

Other presenters will include Tim Boals, ELL assessment consultant, Office of Educational Accountability, Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction; Seree Weroha, coordinator of grant refugee projects, Wisconsin DPI; and Elise Klein, founder and president of Teachers Against Prejudice.

The registration fee covers the cost of the conference, lunch and reception. Participants may register for one or two days. Fees for both days are $55 for WITESOL members, $85 for non-members and $35 for students or volunteers. Subtract $15 for one day registrations. A $10 fee should be added for all registrations received after Sept. 12. WITESOL offers conference scholarships for its members. Information is available in the WITESOL newsletter.

For more information or to request a registration form, contact Reynolds at (715) 836-4067 or reynolkm@uwec.edu or Ernst at (715) 836-4173 or ernstbk@uwec.edu.

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 Judy Berthiaume, Director
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Updated: September 4, 2003