Random ideas for ELT people, plus guest blogs & travel notes

Talks and visits 2012



17th – British Council, London

Very enjoyable talk to an enthusiastic audience – can now be seen on video via the British Council website –  bit.ly/zgQfiZ



With Shelly Terrell, who shared the Cultura training with me

1st – Cultura Inglesa, Rio de Janeiro

Noisy enjoyable plenary for 650 CI teachers, then drama workshop for about 200

3rd – Cultura Inglesa, Brasilia

Same again in Brasilia, 200 in main talk, about 150 in drama workshop

4th – Cultura Inglesa, Goiania/BraTESOL Goiania

Motivation talk for smaller but equally enthusiastic group of 40 teachers, then a BrazTESOL drama workshop in the evening


25th – Cevre conference, Istanbul

The Cevre conference is always a great way to start the European conference season – partly because I usually do talks for the first time here. So it was this year – I did my ‘Ten Quotes to make you think’ talk. I think it was OK. 😛

With the fantastic trophy the nice people at Cevre presented me with



2nd – ITK conference, Izmir

Giving my plenary at the ITK conference

This is the biggest ELT conference of the year in Izmir and I think this was the second (possibly third) time I’ve done it. Last time, the format was four straight plenaries. This time there were three plenary speakers – Luke Prodromou, Jeremy Harmer and me – and then a slot for workshops. A much better format, IMHO.

The plenary speakers with Nihal Yildirim, who interviewed us all on video and blogged about it. It was the end of the conference, and it was all getting a bit too much for J Harmer


19th-23rd IATEFL Conference, Glasgow

Well, what can you say about Glasgow?? It’s a city with an identifiable character, a tough, post-industrial feel about it, and a great atmosphere. The Conference Centre was very well equipped, although a bit too far out of town for my liking. I did my Ten quotes talk for the second time, and it went down pretty well.



1st – BESIG webinar, done from my office

Stepping outside my comfort zone, I had agreed to do a webinar from the comfort of my own office for the Business English Special Interest Group. I told them that I know nothing about teaching Business English, but they said that they were a broad church, and happy for all sorts of input. It went well, and there were a maximum of 61 people in the room at any one time. Doesn’t sound  like a lot of people, but it’s a record for a BESIG webinar. 😛


14th – Student conference – Boğaziçi University, Istanbul

With the student organisers after my talk

This was an excellent conference, completely organised by the students of two universities, and took place on the campus of one of them, Boğaziçi University. Really enjoyable feel to it.


18th-22nd – HUPE conference, Opatija

Doing a Pecha Kucha at the HUPE conference

If the Boğaziçi conference had the  most enthusiastic organisers, this one had the most enthusiastic participants. Two very lively talks here. Wish I could go to Opatija every year in early spring!



26th-27th – Joint IATEFL SIG conference: With or without Technology, at Yeditepe University

Burcu Akyol opening the conference

On the same campus as the wonderful ISTEK conferences, and organised locally by the same team headed by Burcu Akyol, this was a really enjoyable weekend, with some great input from plenary speakers Gavin Dudeney, Lindsay Clandfield, Brendan Wightman and especially JJ Wilson, currently my selection as best ELT plenary speaker anywhere. Such a pity that he hides away in the mountains of New Mexico for so much of the year. I did a new talk called ‘Is Anybody Listening?’, which was live-streamed and which I hope will be available for viewing soon.

An impromptu music session on the last evening, with Luke Meddings on piano and Anthony Gaughan playing drums with a knife and fork as drumsticks – now that IS unplugged!



6th-7th – IATEFL conference, Eger 

Dinner with multinational gang of conference-hoppers – spot the one Hungarian in the picture.

The most fun-filled IATEFL Hungary conference that I can remember. I did a plenary talk and a Listening workshop.


13th-14th – JALT, Hamamatsu

My fourth JALT conference and easily the most enjoyable. Not sure if this is because JALT is getting more chilled out, or if I’m coming to grips with the different requirements of doing talks there.

16th – Drama event, Nagoya

Very excited that I shared the stage with the amazing Carolyn Graham.


20th – KOTESOL, Seoul

22nd-26th – Smart Choice promotional tour



10th  English Book Oxford Day, Belgrade

There were 1,200 people at the English Book Oxford Day. This is the biggest audience I have ever spoken to.



1st-2nd – Wired In, Wired Out conference, Istanbul 

Comments on: "Talks and visits 2012" (17)

  1. I’d love to see you, when you come to Brazil.
    Could you let me know when and where you will be in Rio de Janeiro ?

    • Ken Wilson said:

      Hi – I’m sorry, I only just noticed that there are comment to be answered on this page. I’m just leaving Rio now – the talks I did were training days for the teachers at Cultura Inglesa.

  2. Carlos Macieira said:

    Dear Mr. Wilson,
    Your activities are fantastic. I will be adapting them to my lessons … or adapt the lessons to them …. Uebrigens, ich habe Deutsch in Kiel (die Hauptstadt von Schleswig-Holstein) gelernt. Damals habe ich an Datenverabeitung fuer Anglistik and der Uni teilgenommen und viel Spass in Deutschland gehabt.
    Vielen herzlichen Dank für die klaren Uebungen auf dem Cultura Inglesa Seminar in Rio de Janeiro.
    Ich hoffe, dass Sie auch viel Spass und Erfolg mit der deutschen Sprache haben!
    Carlos Macieira

    • Ken Wilson said:

      Thanks, Carlos – it was nice to meet you and to get some motivation to carry on with my German studies! 🙂

  3. Burcu Dursun said:

    Dear Mr.Wilson,

    I’m just 4th year ELT student,but already now i’m using some of your activities.I’m looking forward to see you and listen your presentation in İstanbul, Turkey in 2012.

    • Ken Wilson said:

      Thanks Burcu – I really appreciate comments like that! But if we bump into each other at one of the Turkey conferences, call me ‘Ken’, not ‘Mr Wilson’ 🙂

  4. Dear Ken,
    I went to your talk at the British Council on 14 Feb. I’m not sure if you remember me, a Brazilian girl called Lilian. I’m doing the Trinity Diploma and I would like to have more information about your wife’s research/project mentioned. I’m working on my last assignment now and as I’m a NNS teacher my topic is: ‘The findings of a non-native speaker teaching English in the UK’, which has something to do to what he had done. Could you help me with that, please?
    Thanks a lot!

    • Ken Wilson said:

      Hi Lilian, sorry that I only noticed your note now. Dede’s research isn’t about NNS teachers in the UK. If you email me, I can send you the names of some NNS teachers who are working or have worked in the UK.


  5. Daniela Arcidiacone said:

    Hi! I’m Daniela, I’m a teacher from Argentina. I’ve just seen a video on motivation uploaded to the British Council webpage and I think it’s fantastic!
    Hope some time you visit us in Argentina and deliver such a a wonderful presentation!
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experiences!

    • Ken Wilson said:

      Thanks, Daniela – I have only been to Argentina once – about 15 years ago. I’ll let you know if and when I get another invitation. 🙂

  6. Bojana said:

    Hello Ken! I’m an English language teacher. I saw your video at http://www.multimedia-english.com ”Motivating the unmotivated” and I liked it very much.
    Are you planning to come to Bosnia and Herzegovina?

    • Ken Wilson said:

      Hi Bojana,

      I haven’t been to Bosnia since I took a bus from Dubrovnik to Mostar several years ago, and that was my first visit to Mostar since 1976. I would love to come back and talk to teachers!

  7. margherita said:

    I’m an English language teacher from Italy. I saw your video ”Motivating the unmotivated” and I liked it very much. Are you planning to come to Italy? Are you going to give a drama course in the UK?

  8. englezara said:

    Just to thank you for your invigorating presentation in Belgrade. We have learnt so much from both what you presented and HOW you presented. 🙂

    One of your quotes has certainly made me think. And I am not sure whether to suggest:
    (1) including an eleventh quote, e.g. “The trouble with quotes on the Internet is that you can never know if they are genuine.” – Abraham Lincoln; or
    (2) inserting a footnote explaining that the “Children now love luxury … ” is neither a direct quote from Socrates, nor a quote from Plato quoting Socrates, but seems to be a summary made by a Cambridge student back in 1907 that got rather popular later on.
    So one unforeseen outcome of the Belgrade event is that you got me reading Plato’s Republic in search of the answer.

  9. The December event should be a belter. You have to feel sorry for me, I’m scheduled to present at the same time as this illustrious blogger!

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