Eventually I have just found some time to write something after the great event titled “Outliers in ELT” by students of ELT Department, Bilgi University. It was 1st International Conference from Bilgi ELT students and to be honest, they all did a great job.
What makes the conference so important for me is that it was my first talk in an International ELT Conference. ( Except Story Sharing Web Conference by British Council).
It was a great chance for me to be one of the speakers of the event. It is sure that there were great and amazing outliers as speakers at the conference. That also let me meet many very important and very special people with further acquaintance.
My topic was about the problems on teaching English in public schools and some ways to handle with them. I have to confess that I didn’t expect much attendance to my session, because when I looked at the Conference’s Program, the other concurrent sessions were really attractive and interesting. But mine was so ordinary one ; problems in public schools. ( Here , I have to send my special thanks to the organization committee , especially to Duygu Başak Gürtekin, for inviting me this event .) This conference didn’t ignore the reality of Turkey. Public schools are reality of Turkey and we have millions of students. That’s why the conference was very important once more for allowing us share what we experience.
We, the teachers in publics school, try to teach something within difficult conditions. We even need more support and brainstorming to deal with the current situation. With this thought, I prepared my session. I was so excited even though I had expected very few attending participation. However, it didn’t happen as I had expected. The room was almost full and they looked very interested in the subject. That was amazing. What made this amazing is to see many people who are interested in public school issues , so I think that we are not alone.
I presented my issue with these subtitles
*Large Classes ( did you know that in Istanbul average number in class is 45, in Turkey it is 31)
*Books and Overloaded Curriculum ( too many things to teach )
*Inadequate hour for teaching ( causes unrealistic expectations)
*Teacher training ( far away from real life and not proper)
*Parents’ attitudes ( lack of background knowledge and experience)
*Students’ attitudes ( unmotivated )
The end was happy one. It was stunning feeling to see their interest in the issue of public schools.
I got good feedbacks. Even for them, it was also interesting to see a teacher of English from public school in an international ELT conference.
So It has loaded new responsibilities on our shoulders to increase this awareness and find more solutions.
BY THE WAY, I will be waiting for your suggestions about the points I touched.
One more thanks for the speakers dinner. It was awesome .
I would like to thank to;
Duygu Başak Gürtekin for inviting me to the event and for her great support.
Nihan Toptan for not leaving me alone and for her special support
Serkan Dilim for being with me as usual
Vicky Loras for encouraging me forever
Onur Alican Keleş for his sincere support
Ceyda Sert for her sincere support
Organisation Committee, Sevim Açıkgöz and Başak Temel for their warm support