At the 5th Future of English Language Teaching Online Conference (FoELT) on 17 October 2020, Joe Brennan presented on 'Happiness and Forging Lifelong learners'.
This collaborative workshop will explore how we (as expert-or at least constant) learners can nurture life-long learning for our students by creating supportive learning environments.
The international and national educational policy directives toward the promotion of life-long learning all highlight the importance of transferable non-context-specific skills to prepare learners of all ages for the increasing complexity of the labour market, for the exponential rate of technological, cultural and social change and to play an active role in democratic life. Helping our learners to engage within an effective learning environment will impact not only on their language acquisition but, perhaps as importantly, on their wider learning journeys across disciplines. This workshop will look at how we can send our students (and perhaps ourselves) back out into the world as more confident and enthused learners.
Research into Self-Determination Theory (Deci and Ryan 1985)* will frame and guide the activities in the workshop which will aim to provide participants with a list of activities and resources with which they can scaffold and motivate lifelong learning in their classrooms and for themselves. The workshop will explore; key needs that learners must have fulfilled to engage successfully with a learning experience, the features of environments that can fulfil those needs and the kinds of activities and resources exemplify those features. Finally, we will link our collaborative library of activities and resources to the pursuit of happiness and why all of this important for our students and ourselves.
*Deci, E. L. and Ryan, R. M. (1985) Intrinsic Motivation and Self Determination in Human Behaviour. New York, NY: Plenum Press.