Professional associations and networks
Being a member of language teacher associations has made me what I am today. But it’s not just by being a member, I’ve been an active member, volunteering and working on committees. I belong to APPI and IATEFL, both English teacher associations, and EECERA, an early childhood research association. I have recently set up a research network, REYLL. To find out more about these associations and networks, follow the links below:
Associação Portuguesa de Professores de Inglês – APPI
This is the Portuguese English Teachers’ Association. They do an amazing job, providing support for teachers in all levels of education and working closely with the Portuguese Ministry of Education, endevouring to ensure English language teaching is quality English language teaching.
With the support of Alberto Gaspar, president of APPI, in April 2000, I set up an interest group for pre-school and primary English teachers in Portugal, called APPInep. I coordinated the group from April 2000 – May 2008, when I stepped down to focus on my PhD. This is their website if you are interested.
- APPInep organises a biannual Bulletin, which comes out in the APPI journal.
- APPInep runs ‘Good practice in pre-school and primary English teaching’ events throughout Portugal.
- APPInep coordinates a whole day of presentations at the APPI annual conference every year.
- APPInep runs an online discussion group called the Primary English Teachers’ List (PET List). You can join this list by following this link.
If you are an English teacher working in primary or pre-school Education in Portugal, you really ought to join APPI and benefit from the work APPInep does.
International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language – IATEFL
This association is based in the UK and housed at the University of Canterbury. It is the next best thing to having a family, especially for a freelance teacher, who can sometimes feel they belong nowhere. I joined IATEFL and its Young Learner and Teenager Special Interest Group in 1999, follow this link (INSERT LINK) if you want to know about them.
I’ve been involved in the following volunteer posts at IATEFL:
- Young Learners Special Interest Group Discussion list moderator from 2000 – 2002
- Young Learners Special Interest Group Coordinator 2002 – April 2006
- Special Interest Group Representative and Trustee on IATEFL Coordinating Committee (April 2006 – April 2009)
- Wider Membersip Individual Scheme selection committee (September 2009 – )
- Editorial Committee for IATEFL Conference Selections (April 2010 – )
European Early Childhood Education Research Association EECERA
The European Early Childhood Educatioin Research Association promotes and disseminates multi-disciplinary research on early childhood and its applications to policy an dpractice. I’ve been a member since 2010, and am on eof the co-convenors of their Multilingual Childhoods Special Interest Group.
Resreach into Early Years Language Learning REYLL
I set up this network with Victoria Murphy (University of Oxford, UK) and Elena Tkanchenko (Oslo and Arkershus University, Norway), with the idea of bringing researchers together who are involved in investigating multilingualism in the home and at school with children from 0-6 years old. We have a JISCmail list which is fairly active. This is a growing network and we are sucessfully bridging the fields of language learning and early childhood education.