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Siobhán's Portfolio

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on 23 April 2014

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Transcript of Siobhán's Portfolio


Section 1
: Introduction

Section 2
: Profile of the future teacher

Section 3
: Professional description

Section 4
: Description and level of mastery of competencies

(1) To act as a professional who is inheritor, critic and interpreter of knowledge or culture when teaching students.

) To communicate clearly in the language of instruction, both orally and in writing, using correct grammar, in various contexts related to teaching.

(3) To develop teaching/learning situations that are appropriate to the students concerned and the subject content with a view to developing the competencies targeted in the programs of study.

4) To pilot teaching/learning situations that are appropriate to the students concerned and to the subject content with a view to developing the competencies targeted in the programs of study.
(5) My take
(6) My take
(7) My take
) To integrate information and communications technologies (ICT) in the preparation and delivery of teaching/learning activities and for instructional management and professional development purposes.
(9) My take
(10) To cooperate with members of the teaching team in carrying out tasks involving the development and evaluation of the competencies targeted in the programs of study, taking into account the students concerned
) To engage in professional development individually and with others.
) To demonstrate ethical and responsible professional behaviour in the performance of his or her duties.

Section 5
: Reflective analysis
Table of content
SECTION 1: Introduction
My professional portfolio I will demonstrate my
abilities and personal mastery of my practice
: the art and science of becoming an ESL teacher. It will also take you through the metacognitive process or
rationalization involved in the evolution of my practice
. This process, as you will see, is illustrated in a
fashion to better represent the
I have faced and made throughout life. By walking along this path with me, you will witness the continuity of my
professional development,
the extent of my
of the English language, the skills I have acquired over the past two years as well as my personal

toward my profession
"walking home" by Francis Caprani 2010
SECTION 2: Profile of the future teacher
This concept map represents my past educational philosophy. As you're about to see, my profile as a future teacher has changed over the past two years.
This document was produced on the eve of my second internship at an elementary school. It reflects my state of mind at the time and my lack of confidence heading into the internship itself. It also demonstrates how my goals have gotten more and more specific with time and experience.
This is a short reflection regarding my views on teaching and a description of the important role that I play in society as a teacher. I strongly believe in the profession because of the immediate impact I will have on the citizens of tomorrow.
SECTION 3 : Professional description
This journey is about personal growth. Here are some specific goals I wanted to achieve as a first year TESL student; all of these are still part of what I want to accomplish as they still are necessary for the ambitious career I have set up for myself:


Learn to
expect the unexpected

- Allow myself to
be spontaneous

Gain more assertiveness and
confidence when speaking publicly
- Develop
professional relationships
with fellow TESLers and professors

and the ESL community.
- Learn & apply
stress management
- Develop
classroom management
2012 -2016
2016 - 2019
...After years of experience...
Graduation from CEGEP
Social sciences/ psychology
Click to view diploma:
Political science and philosophy studies at Université de Montréal
Undergraduate TESL studies
_ AEELS Vice president of academic affaires 2010-2011
- AEELS President 2011-2012
- SPEAQ Campus: Official organization committee 2011 UConcordia and 2012 McGill
- SPEAQ Campus: Co-Leader 2013
- SPEAQ 2012 Quebec City: Presenter
- Teaching assistant École de langue de l'UQÀM 2010, 2011, 2012
- ICTs Monitor for Département de didactique des langues 2012
- Research assistant for the Correction Crusade 2011, 2012, 2013
- Thesis correction contracts 2012
- translation contracts 2012
- Private ESL tutoring
Beginning of Masters courses for the "Passerelle à la
maîtrise en didactique des langues UQÀM
- Maintain/
increase grade point average
- Get involved with many more
research projects
- Confirm a
thesis director
Graduate in 2015
- 2016 at the latest
- Gain
teaching experience
while doing masters
- Land "
Chargée de cours
" contract in applied linguistics at the end of my masters
Begin PhD in education at McGill University
Become a hybrid researcher/teacher/professor.
Become a university professor
Produce research that has a positive impact on the ESL community and the way we teach English in Quebec
My resume provides a complete description of my
academic background
, general
work experience
and experience pertaining to the
Section 4: Description and level of mastery of competencies
Competencies 1, 2, 8, 11 & 12
(8) To integrate information and communications technologies (ICT) in the preparation and delivery of teaching/learning activities and for instructional management and professional development purposes

The use of ICTs has practically become innate for younger generations. Hence, it is necessary for teachers to master these technologies. Using ICTs in the ESL context may allow students to feel comfortable as they can better relate to the material through the use of these very familiar technologies. ICTs can make the learning experience a pleasurable one.
At the same time, it is important for a teacher to identify proper uses for ICTs within the classroom setting as they can become very distracting. As interactive as ICTs can be, it is also important to judge if they serve their purpose for students as a learning tool or if they are more of a nuisance.
ICTs can also be used outside of class to communicate with students and their parents.
11) To engage in professional development individually and with others.

One interesting aspect of the teaching profession is that we are constantly exposed to new knowledge of our profession; it's an ever changing profession. It is imperative to continue to grow within the profession in order to master it. This portfolio, in itself, demonstrates the progress I’m making.
It is important to be updated on the trends and methods within the TESL community. One way of doing so is to attend the SPEAQ convention. These types of conventions allow for collaborative work to be done amongst ESL teachers. Teachers may share their experience with others and seek advice for particular situations. “To teach is to learn”
(2) To communicate clearly in the language of instruction, both orally and in writing, using correct grammar, in various contexts related to teaching.

This competency pertains to the mastery of the English language. The teacher must be an expert in the subject of the English language. In order to transmit the proper knowledge to second language learners, the teacher must understand the language and produce it perfectly. The teacher provides the model necessary for language acquisition. In turn, ESL learners’ oral production is based upon this model. Oral production of the teacher is directly correlated to the students’ oral production competency. Specifically, this means that an ESL teacher must give great importance to pronunciation. Students learn pronunciation by imitation of input. If a teacher continually makes pronunciation errors, these errors will be passed on to students. To improve upon this skill it is important to be regularly exposed to the English language and communicate with native speakers. Exposure to English media and reading may also help.
(cc) photo by theaucitron on Flickr
Relevant work experience according to me as a first year student
Six years ago, I started working at the Cedars home for the elderly for the Christian Middle Eastern community of Montreal. The first language spoken within the community is Arabic; therefore, I developed unique skills when communicating with ESL learners.
I held an administrative position at the home; however, what I enjoy most about this experience was building relationships with these wise, old folks. With them, I learned much about patience and empathy. They also taught me one of the most valuable lessons in life: one never really loses the need or desire to learn, no matter the age.
One of the most memorable experiences at the home was teaching Ms Zakem, 89 years young, how to navigate the internet. Ms Zakem had been feeling lonely and isolated since the passing of her younger sister. The only family members she had were living in Syria. Teaching Ms Zakem to use the internet allowed her to reconnect with her family again. This opened doors for her in many ways. This is precisely what I want to continue giving throughout my career : possibilities. And what better way to do so than teach English as a second language
Teaching Assistant for the L'École de langue de l'UQÀM

I worked as a Teaching Assistant (TA) for "l’École de langues de UQÀM". This experience allowed me to have regular contact with ESL students. My task consisted of supporting students during in-class work by answering questions. In order to do so, I had to be prepared. Before class, I reviewed the work that had been assigned and took notes. I tried to anticipate the types of questions students may have asked regarding the work. I then took their work home and corrected it.
This experience allowed me to gain confidence within the classroom setting. My previous work with the elderly at the Cedars home had taught me how to communicate clearly with ESL learners. This skill was very handy with my ESL students.
Research Assistant
for Pre Danielle Guénette
My work for Danielle has allowed me to exercise critical thinking and develop my analytical skills of language and the psychology behind teaching. I am now aware of teacher-cognition and am very interested in learning more about it. I see language in an entirely different way now. I've collaborated with Danielle's research team on three different projects involving corrective feedback and communication breakdown in written production. This experience has definitely opened the door to 2nd cycle studies in applied linguistics. I look forward to producing my own research, having a positive and lasting impact on the ESL community and changing the way we teach and view teaching English in Quebec.
AEELS President
and ADEESE administrator

As president of our department's student association, I have learned to be a leader. I'm happy to have played an active role within the student movement. My personal contribution to this historical movement has helped define my social convictions and personal ideologies. I'm proud of having represented our students throughout this though academic period. I'm also very proud the diplomatic attitude I showed throughout the process. I'm happy to have become a "go-to" person for so many students.
The research I've done for Pre Danielle Guénette has contributed to the development of my language competency. My ability to analyze language on a meta-cognitive level has had a great impact on this competency. Unfortunately, I don't have the right nor permission to publish artefacts of the research projects I've participated in over the last year.

The evolution of my professional portfolio is, in itself, evidence of the development of the language competency. By correcting and editing the content of my portfolio, I now realize how far I've come over the past two years for this competency.

I’ve also had the opportunity to work on this competency while interacting with ESL learners from my internships and my various teaching experiences. I'm now more aware how to communication with different types of learners.

The most significant experience that has contributed to the development of my ICTs competency is the work I've done as an ICT monitor for the Département de didactique des langues de l'UQÀM. I've helped students from two different departements within our faculty. I've monitored students while using most of the programs mentioned above.

Other significant experience that attests to my mastery of ICTs is my exprience working with research software. I've rapidly learned how to work with ATLAS.ti and SurveyMonkey over the past few months.

I also use Doodle to set up AEELS meetings and Speaq campus meetings. This software can be used to schedule appointments when organizing an event involving several participants. It can also be used for surveys and polls.

I’ve used Cmaptools to build concept maps for an academic project.

I’ve learned how to use these various programs within a very short period of time. This demonstrates my capacity to adapt and learn new technology. I’m very keen and curious about technology. I’ve posted online blogs in the past as well as videos on YouTube.

This portfolio clearly demonstrates my mastery of Prezi.

I’ve also participated in the SPEAQ campus program committee. I’ve created a template for the SPEAQ campus tickets. Through this project, I’ve reached out to future-teachers from McGill University as well as Concordia University. This collaborative project has allowed me to build ties to a national community of ESL teachers in Quebec: the SPEAQ Convention.
As previously mentioned, I also work part-time as a teaching assistant (TA) for l’école de langue of UQÀM. This has giving the opportunity to not only observe classroom behaviour but also become familiar with the classroom setting itself. I’ve also found a great role model by working closely with my TA professor. From her I have learned many interesting teaching methods that I see myself using in the future and others that I would avoid using altogether.
Facing some of my fears during the second internship has really shaped my professional development as I've seen myself grow and become more confident.
SECTION 5: Reflective analysis
My academic journey began at University of Montreal as a Political science & philosophy student. I had always been curious about languages, cultures and beliefs which was originally why I chose to study in that domain. Although very enlightening, after two years of hard work, I still hadn’t developed a tangible idea of where this program was taking me professionally. The idea of teaching had been brewing inside me for nearly one year when I decided to seek help from a career councilor. After vigilant testing and hours of discussion with my councilor, I finally had the courage to change domains and aim for a TESL Bachelor’s at UQÀM. Being perfectly bilingual had always set me apart from the crowd. I decided on teaching ESL specifically because I wanted to give new opportunities to francophones and allophones living in Quebec.
My first semester in the TESL program was, by far, been my most successful university semester up until then. I worked hard during those months to give myself the proper tools to make this experience a pleasurable one. Taking on an active role in my student association and participating in SPEAQ campus are two of my commitments which have made this experience a fulfilling one. I always had the desire, intellect and strong work ethic to be a leader; however, I lacked the self-confidence to do so. I’m very proud of the progress I’ve made over such a short period of time. For me, the next few years will be about nourishing this process while maintaining the motivation for success.
(12) To demonstrate ethical and responsible professional behaviour in the performance of his or her duties.

This competency refers to the appropriate behaviour a teacher must have within the academic context as well as outside of it. Teachers are not only role models within our society; they are also expected to follow ethical conduct within their work place. It is the teacher’s right and responsibility to be aware of all rules and regulations that must be followed. ESL teachers must embrace all the cultural differences within Quebecois society. It is also important for teachers to remain objective and put the students' best interests first when facing ethical issues.

vice president of academic affairs
from 2010 to 2011
, I was committed to defending the rights and interests of our students. I also insured the quality education at UQÀM for ESL and FLS programs. My TESL colleagues were exposed to great deficiencies in the quality of education we received regarding one particular course. Together, we took action to insure that future students would not face a similar situation. I wrote a formal grievance letter and supported it with a signed petition.
I also collaborated with Pre Gladys Jean, Pre Marie-Christine Beaudry and Pr Simon Collin from the department to create the "Guide de présentation des travaux".
to view final product:
As president of our student association, I have acted professionally and ethically over the past year while representing 1st cycle L2 students within our faculty student association. I've always acted in a diplomatic and neutral fashion putting the best interests of our members above my personal convictions and opinions. This experience was memorable as I've proved to myself that I can act ethically as a leader. I look forward to having a leading role throughout my career.
(1) To act as a professional who is inheritor, critic and interpreter of knowledge or culture when teaching students.

This competency refers to the tension that exists between our professional development within the academic setting and the real life situations that we live as teachers. Teachers should have in-depth knowledge of the MELS program, the ability to interpret the program and to be critical towards it. In other words, teachers must be able to adapt their perception of what is expected of them to the reality of the classroom setting. This portfolio is, in itself, a representation of this tension and development.
Critical thinking was pretty much innate to me; I've always been a thinker. A lot of the work I've done this past year has allowed me to put the thinker to work. I've always considered myself to be a skeptic. I constantly question knowledge. I don't see knowledge as "set in stone". I see knowledge as malleable and plastic. If skeptics didn't exist, advancement in any domain wouldn't be possible.

Below is a list that attests to my critical thinking abilities:
- The questions I ask in class
- The "Guide de présentation des travaux" I created for the department (as previously mentioned)
CLICK HERE: http://db.tt/k0RqGfJg
- Critical feedback given to Pre Simon Collin and Pre Danielle Guénette regarding research projects.
- My intervention at last year's SPEAQs general assembly regarding the implementation of the intensive program in Quebec
(10) To cooperate with members of the teaching team in carrying out tasks involving the development and evaluation of the competencies targeted in the programs of study, taking into account the students concerned.

This competency has a lot to do with learning how to collaborate with colleagues. Teachers must be able to work in teams within their school and with other professionals within the ESL community.

Evidence of my ability to cooperate with other ESL teachers is the collaborative work I've done with Concordia and McGill students for SPEAQ campus 2011 and 2012. Organizing SPEAQ campus involves reflecting on the development and evaluation of the program's competencies and reflecting on these competencies in terms of a potential clientele. Our job at SPEAQ campus is to highlight resources and tools for future ESL teachers.

Upcoming goals related to this competency include:
- Sharing and presenting at SPEAQ 2013 in collaboration with an ESL colleague.
- Organizing SPEAQ campus 2013 with two ESL colleagues.
(3) To develop teaching/learning situations that are appropriate to the students concerned and the subject content with a view to developing the competencies targeted in the programs of study.

This competency is about how the teacher adapts the content prescribed by the MELS program to the needs of their students. This means that the teacher should be able to properly assess their students' needs. A teacher must take the ethnic background, the social economic context into consideration when adapting their material.

Click here to view my global planning which reflects my capacity to have a birds-eye view of where I can take the program and adapt it to any given situation :

This complex task also shows how I can plan ahead of time while targeting what is expected of me:
(4) To pilot teaching/learning situations that are appropriate to the students concerned and to the subject content with a view to developing the competencies targeted in the programs of study.

This competency involves guiding students throughout a task to the completion of the task. A teacher must be able to assess students' needs as they guide them through the task and adapt if need be. A teacher must provide solutions to students if problems arise during the activity. This should be done all while aiming for the development of the competencies prescribed by the program.

This lesson plan, made in preparation for my elementary school internship, is evidence of me leading a teaching/learning situation that targeted the MELS program as well as the needs of my students:
Here's a
to view my reflection in detail:
Click here to view my resume:
As you can see, the development of this competency is mainly centered around my extra-curricular work. However, I did act as an inheritor, critic and interpreter of knowledge or culture during my internship in an elementary school last fall as I adapted the program expectations to the reality of my school. My internship school was classified as a level 10; this means that the students' needs are very different as they come from a very impoverished area of the South Shore of Montreal. The role of an ESL teacher is drastically different in this type of reality as some of basic needs of the students are not being met. The weekly internship report below illustrates these thoughts.
This weekly report shows how I had to adapt to my students' needs:
These two texts expose the evolution of my language competency within a year's time:
First year:
Second year:
Click the link
to view the reflexion :
These are just some of the books that have had a lasting impression on me. They've contributed to shaping my values and continue to do so even to this day.
The past two years I've spent in the TESL program have made me realize how important education is to our society and have opened the door to endless possibilities. I feel like the world can benefit from what I have to offer by me following in the footsteps of the professionals I admire the most: my professors. I believe I have it in me and will continue to do whatever it takes to make my dreams come true.
These are some the programs and ICTs I use frequently and master :
Click here to view some of the work I've done for SPEAQ Campus:
to view what I had set out to do as AEELS president before the strike:

By the time I graduate from the TESL program, I expect to be able to assess, both individually and collaboratively, the progression of my students in relation to what they'll have learned. I should learn how to anticipate more specific problems with my planning in relation to my clientèle's needs. This also means I should be encouraging my students along every step of the way. I want to be able to have a global view of what my students will have learned in relation to the targeted competencies. Instructions and terminal objectives should be clear when I'm evaluating my students and they should be aware of the criteria ahead of time.

I have done some assessment during private tutoring.

The diagnosis tests I've used detect the strengths and weaknesses of the learner in terms of vocabulary. Click link to view diagnostic test:
(7) To adapt his or her teaching to the needs and characteristics of students with learning disabilities, social maladjustments or handicaps

This competency involves adapting our teaching to students with special needs. I can think of several instances during my elementary internship where I had to adjust my teaching to cater to the regular students as well as the undiagnosed hyperactive students or students with learning disabilities. Students with these special needs that don't have a proper diagnosis don't have a plan d'intervention set up to guide the teacher. Furthermore, the resources and tools needed for these students aren't provided. Despite not having these tools, I tried as best as I could to include these students and encourage their social development.
(cc) photo by theaucitron on Flickr
Click here to view TA contract:
Evidence of this can be seen in these two weekly reports on lessons I gave during my elementary internship. These show that I'm aware of students' needs, have anticipated points to improve on and have adapted learning to the students concerned:
Click to view more evidence of me cooperation with members of my community:
This document is evidence of a co-teaching experience that happened during our preparation course for the second internship. It is linked to this competency as it shows the development of my teaching skills through group work:
(6) To plan, organize and supervise a class in such a way as to promote students' learning and social development.

To me, this competency involves the entire reflective process that a teacher goes through when planning a lesson or several lessons. It is also related to the framework in which a teacher chooses to implement their lesson and how easily this framework can be revised as problems arise. It also involves anticipation of problems that may occur during the lesson. All of this is to benefit the student and to provide the ideal context for learning to take place
(9) To cooperate with school staff, parents, partners in the community and students in pursuing the educational objectives of the school.

Although I don't have much experience cooperating with school staff, I do cooperate with the parents of the children I give private tutoring to. I have learned through this cooperation that the key to success doesn't only happen in the classroom or between the student and the teacher, it also happens at home and outside school with support from the parents, siblings and friends. I see this competency as being able to communicate and collaborate with various stakeholders to guarantee the success of the student and to meet the goals set by students, the community and the school.
This video illustrates my ability to use my knowledge of ICTs to create or adapt authentic material for my students.
The creation and completion of my learning-portfolio has been quite eventful. I went through different phases when planning my work. Being a very introspective person, I first felt as though the creation of the learning-portfolio would not be anything more than a narcissistic process. When reading through the MELS Teacher's competencies guide and by actually doing the portfolio, the motifs for the creation of the learning-portfolio became clearer to me. I related immediately to the conceptualization of the tension that exists between the academic views on teaching an L2 and the reality of teaching an L2. I'm happy to have put the time and effort into this learning-portfolio as I have managed to paint an image of where I've come from, how far I've come and where I'm headed. Through this learning-portfolio, I feel like I've materialized distant career goals into foreseeable objectives. As the painting from this very presentation depicts perfectly: I'm finally walking home; I'm finally becoming the person I always knew I could be.
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