Let's make REAL the voice of language teachers in Europe!

Written by: Ophelia Pamukchieva
Sounds good and it is not only a dream. REAL is the name of a project whose aim is to found an organisation which will unite and help both language learners and language teachers all over Europe. The first steps have been made and the seminar – REALise your poten…tial is one of them.
The seminar took place in Iasi, Romania and there were participants from Romania, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Latvia, Greece, France, Spain and England. If I have to describe the atmosphere in two words, they are enthusiasm and hope. It is appropriate to remind you the old Bulgarian legend of Khan Kubrat who asked his sons to break arrows one by one and it was an easy task but when they had to break an armful of arrows is was an impossible task. The moral was that if they worked together they would be stronger.
The same can be said about a common organisation of most of the European language associations and this way it will be easier to reach and influence authorities and financing at European level as well as attract public attention. Such an organisation will also give us more opportunities to share ideas, experience and make our language associations more attractive.
There is still a lot of work to be done and it depends on you and me to make this idea into reality.
I believe, you have already been intrigued and will look at their pages:

BETA days in Vidin 17-18 November 2007

Since February 2007, when BETA first introduced the idea of offering teacher training seminars called BETA Days for local teachers throughout the country, we have organised three such events. Here follow some impressions from the BETA Days in Vidin.
The seminar which was hosted by the oldest and biggest school in town,  “Tsar Simeon Veliki”, was supported by the MoE regional inspectorate and the municipality of Vidin. We would like to express our special gratitude to the local organizer and coordinator Vladislava Nikolova for her hard work and warm welcome. THANK YOU, Vladi J!
During the two days of the seminar there were teachers of English from different schools in Vidin and the surrounding towns. BETA sent Dr. Ellie Boyadzhieva from South-West University in Blagoevgrad and Desi Zareva from New Bulgarian University who offered four 90-minute sessions – dealing with different aspects of English language teaching. Here are the topics plus very short descriptions:

  • “Students and Teachers – Perfect Strangers?” (giving insight into teacher-student relationships);
  • “Using “rubbish” and “leftovers” in ELT classroom – enticing speaking and creative writing” (showing creative ways of using realia and authentic materials teachers tend to collect from trips abroad;
  • ELT FAQs – some answers that will help prepare your own materials using the net (offering ways of using the Internet for ELT purposes);
  • “Global English and Englishes” (offering a new look at the question of which and whose English we should teach).

If you wonder whether the teachers worked hard during the seminar you can have a look at the pictures we took. They also show you how lovely Vidin and the Danube are!
If you would like to be the next BETA stop, write to us.