Monday 29th March

1. Many of the readers of these messages of mine are indebted in one way or another to A S Hornby. Some of you have benefited from MA scholarships and some have attended summer schools and workshops funded by the A S Hornby Educational Trust – and pretty much everybody has used one edition or another of the Hornby dictionary, the Oxford Advanced Learners Dictionary, in their learning and teaching! The English Language Teaching Journal (ELTJ) have just made available a range of resources, many of which, including a facsimile of A S Hornby’s very first issue back in October 1946 and an interview with Hornby himself, are gathered together here https://academic.oup.com/eltj/pages/anniversary

And on this page https://academic.oup.com/eltj/pages/editors_choice_videos you can find a number of ‘Editor’s Choice’ videos where authors talk about their ELTJ articles, including one with Richard Smith talking about his article, ‘A brief history of ELT Journal‘. Thanks to Richard for bringing these resources to my attention!

I couldn’t find a download of the whole issue, but I’ve attached a PDF of Hornby’s editorial from Issue 1 on Foreign Language Studies: Their Place in the National Life.

2. The BAAL Language in African Special Interest Group will be holding their conference online this year, between the 1st and 14th of June 2021, on the theme of African languages and social change: Politics, activism, and justice. The conference will be free, and registration will open in early May; the main reason for my mentioning it now, though, is because the abstract submission deadline is the 16th of April 2021. BAAL are offering Internet Scholarships to assist participants who may be otherwise unable to attend due to high internet costs. If you would like to apply for an Internet Scholarship, please note this when submitting your abstract. PDF with full information attached below. (I wonder whether the English language is the elephant in this conference’s living room?)

3. UNESCO is conducting a short survey to collect data from parents of K-12 students on screen time, and its impact on children during the COVID-19 disruption, to help them provide informed recommendations on regulating home-based digital learning, better provision of digital learning materials, and protecting children from potential negative impacts. Survey link and more information here https://survey.alchemer.com/s3/6256737/Survey-on-Home-based-screen-time-digital-learning-and-digital-reading It takes around 15 minutes to complete and closes on Friday, 9th April. One of the areas the survey aims to collect data and feedback on is the costs and affordability of home-based digital learning. (I don’t see why teachers shouldn’t also respond.)

4. On a related matter, on Wednesday 31st July at 15:00 UK time OECD are organising a webinar on Understanding digital risks for 21st century children. More info and a registration link here https://meetoecd1.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_n2aq76prR7SLlMKxJVniGg

5. And, finally, I strongly recommend a visit to https://storyhaven.digitalfiction.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/Episode-1.html

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