On Sunday, April 26 Thomas Bieri, an EFL instructor at Nanzan University in Nagoya, and coordinator for the JALT Extensive Reading Special Interest Group(ER SIG) came to Morioka and gave a presentation on extensive reading. Bieri spoke about how teachers at junior high school through University can use ER as an effective tool for increasing English reading competency in students. What really set Bieri’s talk apart from other extensive reading presentations was the way he actually defined what extensive reading was in contrast to other forms academic reading such as intensive reading.
Bieri explained many of the fundamentals of extensive reading and put emphasis on the fact that graded readers should be the choice of the students at a level that is easy for them to read. He outlined some activities that teachers can use with readers during class time and looked at ways in which teachers can evaluate student progress through web tool such M-reader.
Bieri stressed that extensive reading can also be a social activity in the classroom, with students sharing their favorite materials. Finally, he gave a list of useful companies and links for useful material and readers. Bieri’s talk was very informative and Iwate JALT would like to thank him for coming to Morioka. They would also like to thank the Extensive reading SIG for sponsoring his visit.
Reported by Jason Hill
All photography ©2015 Jason Hill