For those of you who braved my previous post I think it came through rather clearly how much I value the concept of mutual support for teachers. Sadly, as Joe Dale stated in his opening keynote at #ililc, the days of teachers being able to get out (reasonably) easily to training events seems to be on the way out, leaving us to find alternative ways to keep enthusing ourselves and finding the best ways to motivate our learners and ensuring their learning is of the highest possible quality. Twitter and the online communities have a role, but there's nothing like that face-to-face experience.
Which is why yet again I think A.L.L. stands to be a key part of the next few years for language teachers. Yes it might require commitment, but I think many people are prepared to give up a morning if it’s going to reinvigorate them and if it’s also going to make the following period actually that little bit easier. I’ve tried on a few occasions to get a network going down here in Devon, but alas poor timing and huge distances have made that difficult... so far (plans are afoot... again, but hopefully with a bit more OOMPH).
But the West Country does have one branch which is very much alive, in the form of the West of England branch. And the time approaches for their fantastic West of England Conference, which this year is to be held at Bradley Stoke Community School, just north of Bristol, on Saturday 12th March. Although I will be presenting I still think it has the potential to be a cracking morning, especially as both Greg Horton (the brains behind Group Talk, a great way to get pupils speaking for real) and Chris Harte (anyone who reads this blog will know how much he’s inspired me over the last year or so) will be stepping up to the mark. So please, please download the following form, come along and let’s keep the buzz going.