Happy New Decade! How Will We Change? Will We Discuss Change in Our ESL Classes?

As the decade ends, this 2008 Did You Know videofor a Sony conference seems more relevant than ever. With quick factoids and fast edits, it shows how radically our world is changing. How do we prepare students for a world full of new technologies, new jobs, and new challenges?
2008 Sony Conference Video on Change
Did you notice how dated this celebration of technological possibilities felt with the MySpace reference from just 14 months ago? “Nothing is constant except change,” observed the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus in 500 B.C.E!

From my perspective, this new high ultra-high tech world will demand more attention to “high touch” interpersonal social skills. The ability to critically think, creatively imagine, and deeply reflect will be more important than ever. Our English classrooms should provide space for students to develop their speaking and thinking skills.

One simple method is to make change a topic in our classes. Cities, products, families, schools, and people change. This moment also allows us to ask some “big” questions.

• What changes have you seen in your hometown this decade?
• What changes have you seen in your family this decade?
• How has your country changed this decade?
• How have you changed this decade?
• What changes would you like to see in your country?
• What changes would you like to see in our world?
• What changes would you like to see in your family?
• How would you like to change in the next decade?

Yet change is always relevant in the 21st century. How will our classes change in the next decade? How will the field of teaching English change? How can we, in President Clinton’s classic phrase, “make change our friend”? Here’s change, a free chapter from Compelling Conversations, for you and your English language learners. Visit http://www.compellingconversations.com/pdf/change.pdf

Happy new decade! Let’s make sure the next decade provides more smiles and fewer sighs.

Ask more. Know more. Share more.
Create Compelling Conversations.
Visit www.CompellingConversations.com
2008 Sony Conference Video on Change

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