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A couple of finds at Sunshine State TESOL

May 21, 2011

Last Friday and Saturday, May 13 and 14, Sunshine State TESOL held its convention in Jacksonville, Florida. I attended several sessions including a very good one by Keith Folse on setting up a TESOL certificate program for undergraduates and five practical writing activities. I especially liked the five practical activities which included ways to have students write without having to increase grading. Keith Folse is an excellent presenter, and his advice is practical and user friendly. However, his advice about reading during the session provoked me into considering vocabulary more seriously for a class I will teach in the fall. He spoke of providing a vocabulary flood in reading classes, especially at the lower levels. I like the idea so much that I plan to revise the low intermediate reading class to provide this vocabulary flood. Right now, I am thinking about how to implement such an approach.

Another key presenter for me was James May. James and I taught together for a year, and then as now, his enthusiasm for teaching generates ideas and enthusiasm. He has a site,, where he reviews applications he has learned about as well as technology applications to the ESL classroom. He presented some applications he learned about at TESOL’s main conference, which was in New Orleans this year. His webpage for his conference presentation is Best of CALL 2011. He also presented with a colleague on uses of embedding for class activities. However, when I tried to do one with our Learning Management System, Angel, it did not work, so I will have to figure out another approach.

In his presentation, he highlighted a vocabulary site, Marsha Chan’s English Vocabulary Quizzes. This site has quizzes on the 2000 most frequent words in English. The quizzes were built with concordance information from Compleat Lexical Tutor. This looks like a great site to get my students started on the vocabulary flood suggested by Keith Folse.

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