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Fifteen participants from (6) DBA churches and another 15 from other area faith-based organizations came together for 8.5 hours of concentrated introduction to teaching English as a second language. The beginning level workshop, Teaching English with Excellence, sponsored by DBA, was hosted by FBC, Denton April 7-8 in their new facilities.
Karen Peiser, teacher/trainer with Literacy Connexus, and Cyndy Kilpatrick, trainer/apprentice and ESL Coordinator at UTA, led the workshop.
DBA participants came from FBC, Denton, FE: Un Ministerio, Southmont Baptist, Christ Community Church, Highland Baptist and New Hope, Aubrey.
Students learned basic principles involved in language learning and teaching ESL on the beginner level. By the end of the training, they were given the tools to be able to write an ESL lesson for beginners, prepare and demonstrate teaching activities on the beginning level, and gained confidence in being able to step into a beginner level ESL class as a teacher or co-teacher.
Plenty of resources were presented to those interested in starting an ESL ministry. Of particular significance was the document, FIRST STEPS: Starting a Second Language Ministry. This 20-page manual describes 17 steps in preparing and setting up a language ministry.
Repetition was the key to this training as well as in teaching an ESL class, and participants received opportunities to put learning activities into practice. One very interesting activity was to take part as learners trying to understand a teacher who taught them using Chinese! This helped participants understand what an adult student goes through as they attempt to learn a second language.
Everyone enjoyed the interaction with both conference leaders and with each other as they were exposed to the concepts and strategies that fuel adult language learning and as they gained experience in carrying out suggested activities involved in the process.
Literacy Connexus Ministries will conduct an advanced level of ESL training in Rockwall on August 18-19.