Teaching English Beyond the Textbook: A teacher training seminar in ELT

An 18-hour professional development training seminar for English language teachers delivered in 3-hour Saturday sessions with Natasha Tsantila, MA

When: March 16 – April 20, 2019 every Saturday at 11:00-14:00

Where: Alba Graduate Business School, 6-8 Xenias street, 115 28, Athens

Language of Instruction: English

Audience: By registration only


This hands-on training workshop is aimed at ELT teachers who wish to pursue a practical course that covers classroom practices and pedagogical considerations in the use, adaptation and/or creation of materials. Working collaboratively in class, participants will reflect on, plan, and share their instructional practices as well as adapt materials with the aim of redefining their overall approach to English Language Teaching in their own teaching contexts and, ultimately improve their learners’ overall language performance.

Who is it for?

The course is for ELT teachers who work in a foreign language school and who, encouraged to reflect upon their teaching situation, will explore alternative practices and classroom activities aligned with the current demands and developments of ELT.

Learning objectives

  • Introduce fundamental methodological approaches to ELT
  • Identify links between methodological approaches and teaching practices
  • Encourage the design and implementation of specific and contextually appropriate teaching practices
  • Engage participants in a constructive peer evaluation of teaching practices.

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this training course, participants will be better able to:

  • Reflect upon their own teaching contexts and improve their teaching practices accordingly in order to increase student engagement in the learning process
  • Create a (digital) portfolio of tasks (and web tools), as a repository, for their own future own reference
  • Motivate and engage and enthuse learners
  • Boost participants’ self confidence in their teaching practices and language skills
  • Promote awareness of the contemporary nature of English as used in multilingual and multicultural communities
  • Share good practices with colleagues from other schools
  • Facilitate future networking among teaching professionals by fostering a successful teacher learning community.

Course structure/content


Fundamental theoretical considerations and instructional practices

  • Orientation to the workshop
  • Brief overview of fundamental theoretical and methodological aspects in language teaching and learning: Implications for the ELT practitioner.
  • Intro to Task-based learning/1
  • Task-based learning/2
  • Task sequencing for effective learning: what do we need to know?
  • Authenticity in ELT classroom.
    • Connection with real-life use of English.
    • Making use of printed and online resources to adapt and/or design authentic materials [tasks and activities] to address learners’ needs


PART 2: Reading and Writing  Revisited

  • Exploring the use of printed and electronic-reading texts in the EFL classroom.
    • What do the course books offer?
    • What do our learners need to know?
    • How do we adapt courseware to address the needs of the contemporary learner?


Listening and Speaking Revisited

  • Developing oral skills
    • What do we practice?
    • How realistic are our practices?
    • How can we use classroom activities and authentic interactions to boost fluency and competence in speaking?
  • Addressing the listening challenge
    • Evaluating websites that can be used for the teaching of listening
    • Development of authentic listening activities through the use of online tools.


Recommended reading selections will be provided. Supplementary self-access materials will be uploaded on Blackboard (Learning Management System).

Why attend

The course will equip participants with the knowledge, techniques and tools needed to employ in their own teaching contexts. The course will mainly focus on practical aspects related to classroom practices with an implicit, however, reference to theoretical considerations.


All participants will receive a Deree – The American College of Greece professional certificate of participation upon completion of 80% of the 18-hour workshop.

Dates & times

The seminar will be held the following Saturdays, 11:00-14:00

March 16, March 23, March 30, 2019

April 6, April 13, April 20, 2019

Seminar Fees

Regular single participant fee: €150
Members of the ACG community, MSU exam network and unemployed: €120

Natasha Tsantila, MA

Natasha Tsantila (M.A. in Applied Linguistics, University of Reading, UK), has been teaching and designed courses in academic writing and Linguistics at Deree-The American College of Greece, since 1989. She has worked as an examiner in prestigious examination boards,EFL teacher, English language Programme coordinator and teacher trainer in language centers in Greece. Her professional interests include language and identity, language teacher education, language and pedagogy, teaching English as an International language, teaching Academic Writing. She has presented in international conferences, IAWE, ELF and TESOL. Among her recent publications are: “Student Attitudes toward Accented English: The American College of Greece Context” in L. Lopriore & E. Grazzi (Eds) Intercultural Communication: new perspectives from ELF, (2016), “/kju:kʌmb∂(r) /or /kukumber/ ? Preferences and attitudes toward standard accents in the Greek ELF context” in N. Tsantila, J. Mandalios & M. Ilkos (Eds) ELF: Pedagogical and interdisciplinary perspectives, (2016), “Cultural identity, accentedness and attitudes of Greek speakers of English toward English pronunciation in the EFL context” in E. Agathopoulou, T. Danavassi, & L. Efstathiadi (Eds) Selected papers from the 22nd International Symposium on Theoretical and Applied linguistics (ISTAL 22), (2017), “ELT course books and Global English: the case of Greek lower secondary state schools” in Revista A Cor das Lettras (vol 18). She is the co-editor of the volumes ELF: Pedagogical and interdisciplinary perspectives (2016) and “English as a Lingua Franca for EFL Contexts” (2019) published by Multilingual Matters.She was the ELF7 Conference chair, held at Deree, Athens, in September 2014 and she has been currently working on her PhD on ELT materials.

For more information, please call 210 600 9800 ext. 1332 or email [email protected]