Today I attended the IATEFL IP & SEN SIG first PCE event.

There was a quite a diverse range of talks and exchanges, from more personal to more academic, from quite different perspectives and experiences from different countries.

I would like to share some phrases, stories, images from a great day of talks:

“It is not us and them – we are all special – we are all with special needs”






“The language of inclusive Education – accessible, engaging and appropriate to every learner in the group.”
“Use something to describe the person not saying what he or she is.”
“We all have different ways of learning, we all have special needs.”


“Part of the problem is the school system and classroom, it is not a problem of the teacher.”







All the slides will be made available at the IP&SEN website.

Thanks to all the presenters and organizers!!



Here I am at Sao Paulo international airport waiting for my plane to get to Madrid and then, another plane to Munich.

I left my house in Montevideo 8 hours ago.

Why spending a whole day travelling?

Nine years ago I sent an email to the BESIG coordinator at that time. I wanted to submit a proposal for the annual conference, but I wanted to deliver my talk from Montevideo, Uruguay. He talked to the conference organizers and I ended up delivering a talk using an Adobe Connect platform. I have been presenting at BESIG conferences since then; always from Montevideo, my hometown.

This year I am presenting as well, but this year is different.I am attending my first ever IATEFL BESIG Annual Conference.I am so excited!!

During these years, I have been part of the BESIG online team. We organized simulcasts of the conferences, online conferences, online workshops, online debates, the BESIG World Blog and many other activities.

Together with other BESIG members and committee members we organized lesson plan competitions, we designed online courses for TESOL EVO, selected applicants for different scholarships and endeveoured many other interesting initiatives.

I feel part of a truly innovative and global community of business English  teachers.

What else can I say ? I am proud to be part of this community and I am really looking forward to attending my first IATEFL BESIG Annual Conference face to face.

I saw a beautiful sunrise in Madrid

Now, I am in Munich. I arrived at the hotel 30 yours after leaving  my home in Uruguay.

native, non-native, bilingual

If you followed some of the online comments of the #IATEFL Conference, you should have heard about Silvana Richardson‘s plenary session

laloli 5


Nik Peachey interviewed her before her plenary; she talked about the three As:

  • Awareness – become aware of what the situation is
  • Advocacy – be more active, more supportive, become more vocal
  • Activism – at teacher associations


If you were not at IATEFL or could not watch the plenary online, you can watch the recording now.


laloli 4laloli 3

Nik Peachey also interviewed Burcu Akyol and Marek Kiczkowiak, who talked about some the issues surrounding non-native teachers in ELT and the development of the website.

David Crystal – IATEFL 2015

D Crystal and native speaker


Talking about INCLUSION at #IATEFL

IATEFL held its second Web Conference in 2015. Susan Hillyard and I delivered a talked on Inclusive Education.
You can watch the recording here
After the talk we had an interactive panel discussion moderated by Phil Dexter, Priscila Maiteni, Susan Hillyard and me –  here

This year there is a New Proposed IATEFL SIG – Inclusive Practices and SEN (Special Educational Needs)

Source: New Proposed IATEFL SIG – Inclusive Practices and SEN (Special Educational Needs)

  • Marie Delaney @mariedelaney1, author of many really good books on teaching, delivered this workshop

Marie Delaney copy



Inclusion 3


  •  Forum on special educational needs – creating positive inclusive learning opportunities with Phil Dexter @Oscartomislav, Sharon Noseley @shaznosel  and Sophie Farag




See more here


After hours – ‘Live at the 50th in Birmingham’


IATEFL CONFERENCE – participate online!

Want to know more about what’s going on at the conference?

Want to share your experiences as face to face or online participant?

On Thursday 14th April, 2016 at 18:00 BST delegates from Birmingham and online participants from all over the world are meeting in a special webcast live from the venue to discuss and exchange views of different talks, workshops, plenaries and interviews. Some special guests will also be joining us to interact with the online audience.


To join us click here

Select the “Enter as Guest” option, write your name and country, then click “Enter room”

You can check your local time here

We are looking forward to seeing you online!


Photo Carol Read

New Proposed IATEFL SIG – Inclusive Practices and SEN (Special Educational Needs)



Education should be inclusive at all levels and it should ensure equal access to the same general education offered to all.

Convention on the Rights of Persons with disabilities – 2006

I have been an English teacher for more than 25 years and I have been promoting and working for an inclusive education system for 16 years.

Now, a new IATEFL Special Interest Group has been proposed, Inclusive Practices and SEN. In order for the proposed SIG to be established, 50 current members of IATEFL must express their intention to make this their first SIG (included in their membership) or add this SIG to their membership at additional cost.

Anne Margaret Smith (@amsELTwell) , one of the proposers, will be at the IATEFL conference in Birmingham next week.  If you are willing to join the SIG and will attend the IATEFL conference, you can meet Anne Margaret Smith before or after one of the Forums at the conference:

  • Forum on special educational needs – creating positive inclusive learning opportunities in the ICC Hall 7, 17.20 to 18.25 on Wednesday, 13 April
  • Forum on learners with SpLDs in the Hyatt-Andante, 17.25 to 18.30 on Thursday, 14 April

Aims of the proposed SIG focusing on Inclusive Practices and SEN

  1.  To raise awareness of the challenges facing learners with physical disabilities, sensory impairments or cognitive differences in the language classroom, in order to promote a more inclusive learning environment.
  2.  To share best practice and experience in terms of accurately identifying language learners’ additional needs.
  3. To disseminate information about inclusive teaching methods, materials and resources for working with learners who have additional needs in the classroom.

Proposed Activities
The SIG would carry out the normal SIG activities such as F2F and online events and a minimum of three mailings a year.

The proposed SIG would have an on-line discussion forum where teachers could ask questions and share experiences and resources. It would also publish a quarterly online newsletter for members, letting them know of forthcoming events and new resources that may be of interest to them.

The SIG committee would organise an annual ‘research round-up’ to disseminate the findings of small scale research projects (such as MA dissertations, PhD research and teachers’ action research) in this field.

It is also anticipated that the proposed SIG would work closely with the other SIGs to organise conferences on specific themes (e.g. literacy activities for dyslexic learners / developing accessible materials / inclusive practices in the business context / disability and assessment issues). In this way we would hope to promote inclusive practices in all ELT contexts.


I would like to invite you to join this new IATEFL SIG – you can do so by sending an email to


Source: Inclusive Education – What we should be doing

IATEFL 5OTH Annual International Conference and Exhibition

My first post as an IATEFL Registered Blogger

We can all feel it coming, another IATEFL Annual Conference. And this year it is the 50th Annual Conference!!

Travel arrangements, accommodation, meetings with colleagues and friends.

Choosing what talks to attend, preparing our talk

Feeling the rush of energy!!


Fortunately, I was able to attend the IATEFL Annual Conference in 2011, 2014 and 2015.

Let me tell you, one of the most enriching and unforgettable experience as an English teacher, as educator.


This is year, I will not be able to participate face to face.

I am planning to follow it online!!


So, this is an invitation for those of you who cannot attend the conference to follow suit.



And this is an invitation for those of you who are attending to share as much as you can with us who are planning to follow online


See you All at the 50th IATEFL Annual International Conference and Exhibition!!!