Exams Catalunya has always striven to provide our Preparation Centre with a range of services designed to ensure that they can give their students the best possible chance of success when they take their Cambridge Assessment English qualifications. One of the most important ways we can help is by providing teachers from our Preparation Centres with high quality training opportunities to hone their teaching skills, motivate themselves to become better teachers, and be sure that they have the most up to date information on the exams.
Our Teacher Support Programme for 2018-2019 got off to a very successful start in October last year when popular presenter Tim Warre joined us for a series of three seminars designed to help teachers get ‘back in the saddle’ after the summer break. One seminar focussed on grammar teaching, another on skills and the third on providing teachers with warmers, fillers and other short activities to liven up their classes. In November the programme continued with our 6th Annual ELT Conference, held at the Palauet Casasdes in Barcelona on Saturday 17 November. We were very pleased to welcome some 200 participants to this event which covered a wide range of topics including classroom management, technology, positive education and exam preparation. Our conference video gives a good idea of the energy and mood of the event as well as providing snippets of interviews with speakers and participants:
After a short break over Christmas, we are now ready to launch into the second part of our Teacher Support Programme with three sessions in January that will be of great interest to teachers who are getting their students ready to take Cambridge English qualifications in 2019.
B2 First is still one of the most popular exams in Spain (in fact last year Cambridge celebrated having examined one million B2 First candidates in Spain) and so appropriately, the first seminar for 2019 is one focussing on the Reading and Use of English paper. This session will be led by Graham Ward, an official Cambridge presenter and formerly a Team Leader for the Exams Catalunya examining team. Graham is also Head of English at the Fundcació Collserola school group, so he has experience of the exams from several different perspectives. As many of you will know, he is also a dynamic and entertaining presenter!
Our second January seminar focusses in detail on speaking exams, and particularly on how to help students overcome the nerves that can play a role on exam day. This seminar, presented by Dan Shepherd, will take place in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat at the Torre Barrina Centro Municipal. Finally, Sarah Johnston will present a session for teachers of Young Learners, looking particularly at how to motivate them to improve their marks in the Reading and Writing components of the exams.
Dates and locations for these three sessions are as follow:
- Tuesday 22 January – B2 First Reading and Use of English – Exams Catalunya, Barcelona
- Thursday 24 January – Preparing for Speaking Exams and overcoming nerves – Torre Barrina, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat
As well as benefiting from the content of the seminars, the events are always a great opportunity for exchange of ideas and networking with other teachers. All three events are sponsored by major ELT publishers and you will be able to browse through their most recent ELT publications during the morning coffee break.
We look forward to welcoming you soon to one of our Teacher Support events!