11th Anniversary Issue of ELT Choutari: Special Coverage on Resources & Materials #Vol 12, Issue 94

Resources and materials for more engaging and comprehensible learning

Source: teachercreated.com

Welcome to the 11th anniversary issue of ELT Choutari and the first quarterly (January- March) issue of 2020.

On the completion of its glorious 11 years and moving forward for the 12th year, the current editorial team would like to extend our sincere gratitude to all our founding members, past editors, contributors, well-wishers and most importantly you, as our reader! ELT Choutari has primarily served to promote local scholarship and a resource bank for ELT practitioners. The 11th resourceful years of Choutari has produced 11 volumes and 93 issues with hundreds of resourceful articles. Besides, we also have created a resource bank of ELT Blogs, Discussions and ELT Journals to bring the ELT resources at a single venue for our readers. Our ongoing effort of developing Choutari as a resource bank has further encouraged us to dedicate the theme of this issue on production of ELT resources and materials and their use in ELT context of Nepal to generate a focused discourse on this area.

Resources and materials add value in teaching learning as music adds value in a celebration. They are means and tools for making our teaching-learning more engaging, interesting and thus making activities more learnable and understandable to students. Actually, resources are not only for their day-to-day teaching learning but also for the professional development of teachers. Therefore, the use of resources and materials plays a tremendous role in shaping the professional skills of an English language teacher.

The essence of teaching approach or technique largely depends on the resources and materials teachers choose. Because they help teachers in offering students an amazing variety of routes for learning and discovery (Harmer, 2007). So, the classroom that uses resources and materials makes learning more meaningful by engaging learners and allowing them to learn through self-discovery. The resources and materials also support to address multiple learning styles of children through differentiated instruction. Teachers can design the diverse learning activities to address diversified classroom based on them.

The availability and access to the ELT teaching resources and materials both in physical and online formats have been huge than ever. The online resources stand out more in this era due to its menu like ready-made availability. Such resources can also be accessed through simple android phones even in the rural parts of the world. However, a teacher should be able to customise and contextualise the resources as per the need of curriculum and children.

In the context of Nepal, the production of ELT textbooks and supplementary materials is increasing. And there have been some efforts on publishing ELT journals, audio-visuals, digital magazine like ELT Choutari to contribute to the professional development of teachers. Yet, the resources and materials to address the needs of both students (in the classroom) and teachers (for professional development) are insufficient. Likewise, the quality and innovation on the available resources and materials are also far behind the standard. In this backdrop, this quarterly issue of ELT Choutari is presenting you the six blog posts and one bonus resourceful article to create a focused discourse on these issues.

The blog posts offer you good practices of teachers in using locally available resources, teachers’ reflections on using students’ feedback as a resource for shaping their teaching skills, practices of using Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) for professional development and interview with an expert on the resources and materials to the fullest. Moreover, on the occasion of our anniversary, we also present you a special package of reflections- reflections from our founders, editors, ELT experts and readers. Last but not the least, we also present you a super special resourceful article about ELT resources from TESOL blog, which unpacks many other resources once you get into it (so don’t hesitate to unfold the package).

Here you go:

  1. Reflections: Hearing from founders, editors, ELT experts and readers
  2. Quality scrutiny in materials isn’t merely a formalization process: Ganga Ram Gautam, PhD
  3. Teaching English using locally made/available materials: by Rishi Ram Paudel
  4. Open online courses for teachers’ professional development: by Bibas Thapa
  5. How to convert reading into pleasure from pressure?: by Ghanashyam Raj Kafle
  6. Collecting students’ feedback for enhancing my teaching skills: by Somy Paudyal
  7. The Best 2019 Resources for Teachers of ELs: by Judie Hayness

While releasing this issue, we take the pleasure of welcoming and introducing Mohan Singh Saud in our editorial team. Mr. Saud is a PhD candidate at Graduate School of Education, Tribhuvan University, Nepal. He has been teaching English at Kailali Multiple Campus, Dhangadhi, Nepal since 2004. He has also authored some books including school level English series and some journal articles. Currently, he is working on Grade 11 compulsory English textbook under Curriculum Development Centre, Nepal.

Before leaving, I would like to thank all the contributors to this issue. Likewise, I would like to offer special thanks to Babita Sharma Chapagain, Karna Rana, Ganesh Bastola, Praveen Kumar Yadav and Mohan Singh Saud for reading and reviewing the blogs rigorously.

Finally, you are requested to drop your comments for the blog posts you read, share anything you like in your network, and consider writing your own blog post for April- June issue.

Thank you!

Jeevan Karki,
Lead editor of the issue

Welcome to the fourth quarterly issue (October-December) of ELT Choutari, 2019#Vol 11, Issue 93

Dear valued readers,

Greetings!

It gives us immense pleasure to release the fourth quarterly issue (October-December) of ELT Choutari, 2019 under the theme of ‘EFL/ESL teachers’ new teaching ideas/ methods and best practices on integrated approach to teaching English’. As the Ministry of Education, Nepal is heading towards developing and implementing integrated curriculum especially in basic grades, we felt that the discourse should be centered towards it on the academic forum like ELT Choutari. Many countries around the world have been practicing an integrated approach to teaching and learning and advocating its effectiveness for more than two decades. For instance, Dewey (1938) argued that when various subjects are taught in isolation, children lack holistic understanding of the concepts. Likewise, Brain research has depicted the connective nature of brain development that supports the view of integrated curriculum. Wesley (1992) argues that language learning is a whole brain activity; language is learned faster and better if it is taught in a holistic manner. In this backdrop, English teachers of Nepal cannot remain aloof from this new idea.

Learners always bring culture and life experiences related to different content areas to their classroom as they come from rich biological, ethnic, cultural and linguistic background. Language is learned by using it meaningfully in various contexts. Therefore, language education should not merely focus on teaching language skills in isolation but curriculum should be integrated and students, especially in basic grades, should be given ample opportunities to learn English as a second/foreign language by experiencing it in real life situations across various content.

Exchanging our teaching learning experiences on professional platform is a part of continuous professional development, which helps us to stay abreast with current trends and practices in our teaching-learning.

The 92nd issue of Choutari offers a wide range of experiences, and opinions of the contributors capturing best practices in ELT in the area of integrated approach to teaching English. We hope these articles will give some ideas, especially to English teachers, on how to integrate English language with other content areas and thus to avoid rote learning and treat English only as a subject in isolation. Moreover, these writings reflect the firsthand experiences in the area of integrated curriculum and project based learning of the authors/teachers and thus the ideas can be directly replicated to our English language teaching learning context.

There are five articles in this issue:

Ramesh Prasad Ghimire in his first article ‘Place of English in an integrated curriculum for basic grades (1-3) in Nepal’ provides a glimpse of integrated curriculum as well as relevant materials that have been developed for grades (1-3) and piloted in Nepal. In addition, the author explains where English stands in the new curriculum and finally he talks about its challenges in the part of implementation and highlights the necessity of careful and effective teacher preparation before the curriculum is launched in a large scale.

Likewise, the second article entitled ‘Enhancing project work in EFL class’ by Samira Idelcadi offers practical way of integrating project work in the EFL (English as a Foreign Language) class and some important ideas to help students in their projects, monitor and assess the projects and learning during the process. She asserts that project work enhances both students’ language skills and life skills and therefore it should not be merely taken as an extra-curricular activity and teachers could rather make it a part of their regular lesson.

In the third article ‘The market study- an integrated approach’, Prakriti Khanal shares how a long term project-‘market study’ can be the pivot around which many other themes and objectives of curriculum across the subjects can be strewn. She furthermore explains how this kind of integrated project enables students to enliven the event and develop their communication and other important life skills.

Midesh Maharjan in his reflective piece ‘Experiential learning experience in Innovative Preschool’ shares some of his innovative teaching ideas to integrate English across contents and explains how children learn language by experiencing it while being engaged in various tasks related to different subject areas.

In the last post, Choutari editor Jeevan Karki compiles you the five special photos from different areas that can be used in teaching language skills especially speaking and writing.

For ease of access, below is the list of hyperlinked articles:

  1. Place of English in an integrated curriculum for basic grades (1-3) in Nepal: Ramesh Prasad Ghimire
  2. Enhancing project work in EFL class: Samira Idelcadi
  3. The market study- an integrated approach: Prakriti Bhattarai
  4. Experiential learning experience in Innovative Preschool: Midesh Maharjan
  5. Photography project V: Photos for teaching speaking and writing; Jeevan Karki

Finally, I would like to thank the entire team of ELT Choutari in general and Jeevan Karki, Ashok Raj Khati, Ganesh Bastola, Praveen Kumar Yadav and Dr. Karna Rana in particular for their rigorous effort in reviewing and editing the blog pieces. We are equally indebted to all contributors of this issue.

If you enjoy reading the articles, please feel free to share in your circle, and of course, drop your comments in the boxes below. Likewise, please write your teaching-learning experiences and send us. We will give a space at Choutari. Our email is 2elt.choutari@gmail.com 

Wish you a happy Chhat Festival!

Happy Reading!

References:

Dewey, J. (1938). Experience and education. New York: Touchstone.

Wesley, D.K. (1992). Educational implications of brain research applied to teaching language arts for creative and critical thinking in writing. ED345240.

Babita Sharma Chapagain  Lead editor of the issue

 

Welcome to the 10th Anniversary Issue of ELT Choutari: Special Coverage on Reflection #Vol. 11, Issue 90

Dear readers and contributors,

Moving forward with ELTChoutari.com rejoicing new years and new tastes of academic curries, here we come with new issue of the online magazine. While saying big bye to 2018 and wishing Happy New Year 2019 to you, the editorial board would like to thank millions of readers and those who have contributed something to the magazine in the past ten years and so. We would like to express our gratitude to the past editors for giving birth to Choutari and their invaluable effort to give it a shape. On this occasion, Dr Sharma, Dr Phyak and Bal Ram Adhikari also share their reflections on the journey, contributions and the future of ELTChoutari.com. We, Karna Rana, Jeevan Karki, Ashok Raj Khati and Praveen Kumar Yadav, the current editors, would like to collectively extend sincere gratitude to millions of readers who have ever supported us and many other writers by reading varieties of articles published on this magazine and by providing feedback to develop our works. Your continuous support has ever made us promising academics and ever inspired to volunteer our time and effort to promote this magazine and we hope you continue your academic activities and share your reflections in the future issues of this magazine.

In the previous ten volumes, ELTChoutari.com has published teachers’ experiences of learning and teaching English, university students’ reflections on their academic writing, researchers’ views, ideas, arguments and suggestions on improving academic productions and teacher trainers’ experiences of training Nepali teachers to teach the English language in public schools. Particularly English as a medium of instruction (EMI) in government schools in Nepal, teachers’ poor English, under-developed research culture in Nepal, learning to research, teaching writing skills, unclear language policy, ICT in the classroom teaching, and reflections on learning and teaching English have attracted the attention of thousands of readers in the past 89 issues of this magazine. We believe that the writings would have positive influence on academic activities of teachers, students and professionals. Also, this magazine would have contributed something positive in policy making, language planning, classroom teaching and research writing.

ELTChoutari.com, an open online magazine, allows professionals, researchers, teachers and students from across the world to share their writings as few issues in the past have published international articles from various countries such as India, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Pakistan, Jordon, Ghana, and so on. Many articles published in various issues have received good impact with citations in standard peer-reviewed journals. We hope the magazine will have much brighter days in the future.

This issue includes various reflective writings including instinct responses from the founder editors, teachers, ELT practitioners and workshop participants’ (the participants attending the reflective writing workshop the last month) on-the-spot lived reflections on reflective writing.

Here is a list of posts for this issue:

1. Looking Back and Forward: Hearing from the Past Editors and Readers

2. A Journey of Gaining Pedagogical Capital: Reflection of an English Teacher by Ganesh Bastola

3. A Step-by-Step Lesson Plan and Assessment for Paragraph Writing by Dr Md. Kamrul Hasan

4. Radio, My Coach for English Language Teaching by Sreejana Chamling

5. Reflection on a one-day-workshop “How to Write and Publish Reflective Writing” by Muna Rai

6. Video Changed the Way of Teaching Poem by Ram Chandra Pokhrel

While releasing this issue, we take the pleasure of welcoming and introducing two new energetic colleagues Babita Sharma Chapagain and Ganesh Kumar Bastola.

Babita Sharma Chapagain is a Hornby Scholar (University of Warwick, UK, 2014/15) having completed MA in ELT and Master’s degree in ELT from Kathmandu University. She is a freelance teacher educator from Nepal having gained 15 years experience of working as a teacher and teacher trainer. She also brings in experiences of writing and reviewing articles.

Likewise, Ganesh Kumar Bastola is an M. Phil graduate from Kathmandu University in English Language Education. He is a teacher, teacher educator, and researcher and translation practitioner, who also brings writing and reviewing experiences.

They will work together on our editorial team.

Finally we, the current editorial team, would like to thank the contributors in this issue and founding editors for their continuous support. Jeevan Karki, a leading member of our editorial team, deserves special thanks for his overall support in this issue. Thank you Ashok Raj Khati and Praveen Kumar Yadav for your cooperation. We hope we will have brighter days ahead.

Karna Rana, PhD

Leading editor of this issue

Welcome to the Third Quarterly Issue of ELT Choutari: Special Coverage on Writing Education #Vol. 10, Issue 88

A teacher providing feedback on her students’ writing (www.alamy.com)

Editorial

We are delighted to present the third quarterly issue (July- September) of ELT Choutari of 2018, the 88th issue. The issue focuses on writing education in Nepali schools and universities.

We, the teachers of English in schools and universities teach about writing not writing itself. For instance, students are made to memorise what a paragraph means rather than making them write a paragraph on different topics. In the university, many students strive to create original pieces of writing. To meet the dates for submitting assignments, students ‘copy and paste’ in rush. They do not receive enough opportunity to practice writing in the classrooms. On the other hand, in schools, teachers generally write paragraphs, letters and essays on the board and students just copy them. They even memorise those notes including essays for the examination. Furthermore, there are ‘ready-made’ paragraphs, letters, job applications and essays in the markets; the “Bazaar Notes”. In a way, these notes make the teachers’ lives go easy. Of course, there are few teachers and students who invest their sufficient effort to practice writing processes in schools and universities. Interestingly, it has also been observed that the teachers and university faculties who have never produced a single piece of original writing in their career grade the students’ papers for their creativity and originality in writing. I mean, do we have experience of the process of writing? We need to rethink and revise the practice of teaching writing in our academic institutions.

In this connection, this 88th issue of ELT Choutari offers a wide range of writing practices, experiences and analysis of scholars. I believe that teachers, students and researchers will be benefited from reading these writings.

Here are nine blog posts for this issue:

  1. Thesis Writing: A Big Learning Opportunity: Nabina Roka
  2. Good Writing is All About Practice and Knowing its Requirements: Dr Hayes (by Jeevan Karki)
  3. Thesis Writing: A Next Step in Learning: Tara Rai
  4. Writing a Writing Education in Nepal: Dr Shyam Sharma
  5. Developing Students’ Writing Skill: Teachers’ Views from Far West: Januka Bhatta
  6. Academic Writing and the Reality in Universities: A Review of Academics’ Voices: Dr Karna Rana
  7. My Experience of Teaching Writing in School: Shanti Upreti
  8. Being Familiar with Academic Writing: Nani Babu Ghimire
  9. Teaching Writing at University Level: Practices from Far West Nepal

I would like to thank Choutari editors Dr. Karna Rana, Jeevan Karki, Praveen Kumar Yadav and a learning editor Narendra Airi for their reviews to release this issue. Finally, if you enjoy reading the blog posts, please feel free to share in your circle and of course, drop your comments in the boxes below. Likewise, please write your teaching-learning experiences and send us. We will give a space at Choutari. Our email is 2elt.choutari@gmail.com.

Ashok Raj Khati

The editor of the issue

NELTA CHOUTARI is ELT CHOUTARI Now

Welcome to August Issue of Choutari

Editorial:

Change is natural and inevitable. Change is necessary to cope with challenges, to embrace new opportunities, and to take any project to new heights.

In order to build on our success in more than a half decade, we have updated our network’s name, moving our blog to a new site within a domain of our own. Nelta Choutari is now ELT Choutari and its site is www.eltchoutari.com. As an informal, independent group of bloggers and facilitators, we continue to pursue the same goals of enhancing professional development in ELT, while we explore new avenues and make greater impact on the community.

What we had so far was a basic WordPress blog; with this site, we have the full range of functionalities that we can use as needed.

Some facts about our journey so far seem worth sharing with our readers and well-wishers. Over the half a decade, we have been positively overwhelmed by the wonderful engagement of 180,557 visits with around 500 posts and over 1100 comments as of July 31, 2014. We wanted to grow and promote such an engagement with a standard site.

Secondly, when we launched the blog in 2009, we gave it the name NeltaChoutari simply because the group was started by members of the organization NELTA and the group wanted to create an informal space similar to the public square in the countryside. This space belonged to the community, and it was characterized by freedom of expression, informal organization, lack of external supervision, welcoming acceptance of active contributors and understanding when any core member wanted to step aside, spirit of volunteerism, and a passion to give back to the community. However, as time went on, the informal group became bigger in scope and impact and more popular than we initially expected, and some confusion began about what the name meant: is it an official blog of NELTA (which it is not), or is it somehow an alternative space (it’s not that either), why is it not part of the NELTA if it bears such a name?Recently, after NELTA office launched its official blog (Nelta ELT Forum) we wanted to emphasize that Choutari is open, informal, and independent – while acknowledging the forum’s official status and a lack thereof with ours. We believe that informal and open spaces add tremendous value to any professional community. We don’t think that one is better than another, but we do think that an informal space adds a unique set of value.

Choutari continues to be dedicated to discuss, discover and deliver ELT related issues in particular and education in general–with even more energy and commitment. We encourage you to continue to contribute and benefit from the vibrant professional community on this platform.

Welcome to our new site—ELT CHOUTARI!

Here is the list of articles included for August Issue, especially focused on diversity in ELT:

  1. Diversity in English Language Classroom, by Balram Adhikari
  2. Diversity and Broader Goals of ELT, by Shyam Sharma
  3. Talking about Creative Consciousness in Teachers, Jeevan Karki
  4. Teacher Training: One of the Best Ways of Self-development, by Parista Rai
  5. Building a Community: What We Value: Reblog by Praveen, Umes & Uttam
  6. Choutari Writing Workshop #2: Photoblog, by Choutari Team

Finally, please update your bookmark and please share it among your social network. Please explore the pages from the top menu bar, and as usual, please like, share, and leave comments.

Happy Reading!

IMG_6861

Balram Adhikari

Editor for August Issue
(with Editorial Team)
ELT CHOUTARI