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International Education Week 2005: English Language Learning Worldwide

Now in its sixth year, International Education Week is a global event

Posted: November 17, 2005 Related item: International Education Week 2005 announced  

During International Education Week, November 14-18, 2005, the U.S. Department of State strongly encourages Americans and citizens of other nations to learn a foreign language, which can open doors to other societies and cultures.

To promote English language learning and teaching outside the United States, the Department of State supports English teaching activities and provides a wide range of services and products worldwide. Among these is a network of Regional English Language Officers (RELOs); the English Teaching Forum, a quarterly journal with more than 65,000 copies distributed in over 100 countries; and a range of exchange programs, including the English Language Fellow Program that sends American teachers abroad on ten-month assignments, as well as the dynamic new English ACCESS Microscholarship Program for underprivileged youth in predominantly Muslim communities around the world. (For more information, visit http://exchanges.state.gov/education/engteaching/.)

Throughout International Education Week (IEW), many diverse activities and events are occurring around the world to highlight the importance of English language learning and teaching. A sampling of these events includes:

• Senegal - Two Department of State RELOs are accompanying two Fulbright exchange teachers to primary schools, middle schools, and high schools around Senegal, to conduct activities and discussions with students, and professional development workshops for English teachers, as well as present books and other Department of State materials, November 14 – 18;
• Thailand – An inaugural Digital Video Conference (DVC) with the University of Oregon is taking place November 18, to train Thai EFL (English as a Foreign Language) teachers;
• Mexico - U.S. Embassy Mexico City is conducting a cooperative program involving two web-based conference presentations, to reach out to U.S. institutions interested in exploring educational exchange opportunities in Mexico or expanding linkages with Mexican institutions, as well as to other U.S. embassies to promote U.S. government-funded educational activities;
• Syria – A Senior English Language Fellow at the University of Damascus is conducting an in-service teacher training workshop on curriculum development and has organized an English Club;
• Lebanon – Two Senior English Language Fellows are training English teachers in Beirut; another is working throughout Lebanon for the Makassed Schools, a philanthropic Islamic group; and
• Uruguay – The U.S. Embassy Montevideo is conducting a series of storybook readings in English for public elementary school children. The first reading took place November 16, 2005. The Embassy's Public Affairs officer Linda Gonzalez; the wife of the Chargé, Mrs. Kristin Nealon; and two American Fulbright researchers, William Acree and Elizabeth Watson, read stories to classes of children ranging in age from 6 to 9. The English immersion school was very enthusiastic to have their students exposed to native speakers, and the students very much enjoyed demonstrating their knowledge of some basic English words.

International Education Week is a global event, with students, educators, and community leaders participating in a wide range of activities to recognize the benefits of international education and exchange in classrooms and educational systems. Visit http://iew.state.gov/ for more information.

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