Journal of a Participant:
My SPEAQ 2019 Convention in Montreal

Thursday November 21
2:00 PM Preamble
I’m ready to go. Bags packed, workshops ready. I decide to leave my car at home and take the train to reduce my eco-footprint. I begin my 15-minute trek to the train station. It’s a bit difficult with my heavy suitcase, but it’s all for a good cause. I finally arrive sweaty but satisfied. I buy my train ticket, rush down 3 walkways, validate my ticket, and climb up 2 flights of stairs suitcase on tow, to get to the platform. I’m close, but as I approach the train, which is already on the platform, it begins to leave! No, no! The last train of the day!

It’s gone and I don’t want to miss the Pre-Convention workshop, The Service national du RÉCIT, domaine des langues and the Digital Action Plan. What’s my Plan B? I call a friend. Fortunately, my dear friend comes to my rescue, and insists on driving me to the hotel. I am very thankful because she gets me there with time to spare, but my ecological potential was not met-this time!

3:45 PM Pre-Convention workshop:
The Service national du RÉCIT, domaine des langues and the Digital Action Plan.
What an informative presentation! Nadia Laurendeau and Martin Tremblay started off with (a tool that was used in many workshops throughout the conference) and also created a Padlet where teachers could continue to share resources to develop the 12 dimensions of the Digital Competency Framework after the convention!
The Digital Competency Framework was introduced in April 2019, and Nadia and Martin presented the tools the RÉCIT has been working on that are essential in helping teachers learn about and implement this framework.

  1. RÉCIT domaine des langues: The main site. This site offers LESs, activities and resources that incorporate ICTs.
  2. Réseau pédago-numérique (Professional Learning Digital Network):
    Teachers can “learn, create and innovate with the RÉCIT.”
  3. Campus RÉCIT: Where teachers can find courses to learn about many of the tools that are available to them.Thank you to the RÉCIT domaine des langues for providing these resources that will help develop our digital potential!

7:00 PM Opening Ceremonies
Congratulations to Nicholas Walker (Keith Boeckner Award), Mildred Saintforth (SPEAQ Teacher of Merit Award), and Daniel Boulerice (SPEAQ Board of Directors Award). Read all about them in the program pages 11-13.

Keynote Speaker: Mr. Karl Subban
Thank you to Mr. Subban for bringing out our potential to be difference-makers!

9:00-10:30 PM Cocktails
Lots of chatting, networking, and I even had my book signed by Mr. Subban.

Friday November 22
8:45-9:45 AM Keynote Speaker: Dr. Égide Royer
A well-organized presentation, with lots of good examples and explanations for best practices for teachers to better understand the emotional needs of our students.

10:00-11:00 AM Addressing Climate Change Through Learning Stations
Exploring Climate Change Through Learning Stations Presentation
Climate Change Handouts
This eco-friendly workshop was presented by Pascale Pellerin (a former IntenSIG member). Pascale presented a set of learning stations she created to address the issues of plastic usage in our environment. She had us all questioning our own practices with videos, pictures and texts. Well done!

11:30-12:45 Explore the IESL Community Project Resources
This workshop (presented by me) was intended to have participants discover and explore the 4 resources created especially for elementary ESL teachers. At the workshop, we created a community space on the IESL Community Platform (see #4 below) for those who want to share resources on differentiation. Feel free to join! There are many resources available to elementary ESL teachers.

  1. ESL Blogs:
  2. ESL Talks! Web Events (ESL Blogs)
  3. ESL Newsletter (ESL Blogs)
  4. IESL Community Platform


2:55-3:15 PM 30 Days of Art Challenge
In this short workshop, I presented Sylwia Bielec’s project, The 30 Days of Art Challenge and how it can be used for our ESL students.
Get the teachers’s guide and poster, and you’re all set!

3:45-5:00 PM Encouraging Risk-Taking in ESL Learners
Hélène Duguay and Annie Lizotte are two teachers who tried the Linguistic Risk-Taking Passport with their students and were there to report on its very beneficial outcomes. Together, we talked about risk-taking behaviours (general and linguistic), we looked at the passport, and presented the information on how to participate in this year’s pilot project.
For more information visit the SPEAQ Facebook page or Attendify App that was used at the convention.

Saturday November 23
7:30 AM Annual General Assembly (AGM)
Congratulations to Gabriel Sperneac, SPEAQ’s newest addition to the Board of Directors! Thank you to the SPEAQ BOD, Maria Corsetto, and all the wonderful volunteers who worked hard making SPEAQ the best yearly ESL event!
BTW, everyone is welcome to attend the AGM (and there’s a free breakfast for all who do!)

9:00-10:00 AM Keynote Speaker Annie Dumais
Annie Dumais, ICT Pedagogical Advisor, presented lots of links to technology tools that teachers can integrate into their classroom. So many fun ones to discover!

10:00-11:15 IntenSIG’s EdCAmp Experience
Participants met the 2019 IntenSIG members, and exchanged ideas, concerns, resources and coordinates. Gabriel, Frédéric, Annie, Kellylee, Christine and Andrée-Anne are planning the next Intensig Spring Gig. More news coming soon!

2:00-3:00 PM A Close-Up Look at a Reinvestment Task for Elementary
Everybody’s favourite competency, C2! Voula Plagakis, CP of the CSSMI presented a fun LES entitled, What Makes a Good Toy? that focuses on building a solid reinvestment task.

  1. Student Booklet
  2. Teacher’s Notes
  3. Final Copy
  4. Go Fish
  5. Predicting APK

#C2 potential

A big thank you to everyone for your collaboration and participation in making SPEAQ
the best ESL event of the year!