On 18 - 19 May 2019, the Annual Cambridge English Spring Seminar took place in Horgen ZH. We celebrated the 15th Anniversary of the Spring Seminar as well as the 30th Anniversary of our Cambridge English Exam Centre. Have a look at some impressions! The topic of this year’s seminar was "Your Digital Tool Box... practical tools & apps for your Cambridge English Exam Teaching".
The conference began with a welcome and introduction by our CEO, Lori Kaithan, which gave some insight into her personal background and the professional development of the centre. Lori welcomed the VIP guests from Cambridge Assessment who also shared some of the history of the centre. Sue Randall, once Business Director of Cambridge Assessment, and Dr Nick Saville, Director of Research and Thought Leadership, were among the special guests. Fran Woodward, new CEO of Cambridge Assessment English, sent a video message congratulating the centre. The introduction was followed by excellent plenary sessions held by Dr Amy Devine, Senior Research Manager - Cambridge Assessment English and Ben Hoyt, Professor of Business English - School of Management Fribourg. During the first plenary session the topic of digital developments in Cambridge Assessment and the future of digital projects was covered along with how games-based technology can be used to enhance Learning Oriented Assessment. The second plenary showed how to make sure that technology works for you and not the other way around. What are expectations, what digital skills you already have and what the criteria is for success when using tools.
The workshops on Saturday afternoon and on Sunday morning looked at selected tools in more detail and from a practical perspective. All CEFR levels from A2 to C2 and all skills from vocabulary (EVP- English Vocabulary Profile) to grammar (EGP-English Grammar Profile) as well as writing and speaking were covered. The teachers had the opportunity to try out different digital tools guided by experienced workshop presenters. Both free tools as well as those that need to be paid for were shown.
For the first time, we also held a Goethe seminar at the same time for German teachers who prepare students for the Goethe exams. Our first Goethe seminar was a great success and we look forward to further developing our offer in this area as well.
Many ELT publishers were represented and teachers were able to order books with a 20 % discount at Delivros Orell Füssli, one of the exhibitors at the event.
After the workshops all enjoyed a refreshing apéro in an old wine cellar. To celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the Spring Seminar as well as the 30th Anniversary of our Cambridge English Exam Centre a delicious dinner in the once riding stable of this beautiful estate was served. During the dinner, music provided by TRIOTWO spoiled us and various programme inserts livened up the programme. The main prizes were drawn from the raffle tickets which the participants had bought during the day to support our project in Africa “Zurich Meets Tanzania”. The main prize was an online teacher training course with the NILE Institute in Norwich, UK. The prize was sponsored by the Nile Institute. The successful conference ended after lunch on Sunday. It was almost sad to see the participants leave, many of whom we probably will not see until next year. We would like to thank all those who contributed to this wonderful weekend and wish all a relaxing summer break.
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