Scott Thornbury – The Massive Potential of Technology #IATEFL
Scott Thornbury, the renowned author of books for language teachers and famed techno-sceptic talks about what he’s enjoyed at IATEFL Glasgow 2012, as well as commenting on what he likes (and doesn’t like) about using technology for teaching.
Considering his scepticism for educational technology has been well known for several years, I thought Scott was really sporting to agree to be interviewed about what he liked about technology. As it turns out, it seems he’s been mellowing a little lately: in a blog post article berating the wave of tweets, blog posts and general social media cheering in of Apple’s new iBooks publishing software, Scott actually lays down some good ideas (not all of which are possible yet) of how technology can be used for teaching languages.
It seems to me that he’s now taking a softer approach than the older “technology=bad in education” he used to advocate and he’s now looking at appropriate v. inappropriate use of technology for teaching language. This is certainly something I can go along with. Computers and technology for the sake of the technology is going to do nothing other than turn a poorly taught lesson into a poorly taught digital lesson.
Scott also mentions the IATEFL Hornby trust, which supports teachers in the developing world. In their own words:
(The) Hornby Educational Trust supports teacher development in developing countries and countries in transition. The Trust works with various partners to achieve this aim, including the British Council and IATEFL. The Trust wishes to make available to IATEFL Associates round the world project funding for activities in 2012-13 which will support teacher and teacher association development in practical, sustainable and contextually relevant ways.
If you wish to find out more about the Hornby trust, have a look at the IATEFL homepage.