Skills Development Conference 2023

From Akita Wiki

The 2023 Skills Development Conference (外国語指導助手の指導力等向上研修; Gaikokugo Shidō Joshu no Shidōryoku-tō Kōjō Kenshū) was held on November 6th, 2023 at both the Prefectural Education Center and the Personnel Training Center in Tenno. It marked the first time this conference was held in person since the outbreak of COVID-19 in Japan.


  • The scheduled check-in:
    9:30 AM - 9:55 AM


Due to budget cuts, the cafeteria at the Education Center was closed for use.

Opening Ceremony

Welcome to SDC 2023! Following Stephen in his second year of hosting SDC, he tries to make sure everything is perfect. However, there is one big problem.

SDC 2023 opening video]


Workshop 1 Part 1: Teaching Demonstration Video

ALTs were divided and attended one of three teaching demonstration videos given by a team of one JTE and one ALT. Attendees were asked to observe and analyze the lessons. The videos were split into ES, JHS, and SHS levels. Due to BoE policy on student privacy, videos will not be uploaded to the wiki or the internet.

Workshop 1 Part 2: Teaching Video Discussion

Workshop 2: Block 1

Creating Fun and Helpful Games for the Classroom

By Jackson Leventhal

This presentation aims to help you create stimulating and helpful games for your classes. Games are a great learning tool for students to get interested in the classroom. Sometimes, they don’t even realize they are learning.

Understanding Culture to Understand Language

By Steven Basquez

Have you ever wondered why Americans call football "soccer"? Chances are your students have, too, or they've had a similar question. This workshop aims to show you how to look for those answers by understanding English's cultural and historical context and why your students must also learn it.

Promoting Speaking and Listening Skills

By Wiliem Tawake

In this presentation, we will explore the significance of these skills in personal and professional contexts, providing practical strategies and tips to help individuals become better listeners and speakers. Topics covered include active listening techniques, overcoming common barriers, building strong communication habits, and the benefits of honing these skills. By the end of this presentation, you`ll have the tools and knowledge to enhance your ability to convey ideas and understand others with clarity and precision. Whether you`re a student, professional, or anyone looking to improve their communication prowess, this presentation is a valuable resource to help you.

The Way of the PowerPoint.

By Kristopher Jackson

A workshop for developing better PowerPoint (PPT) presentations in the ESL classroom and beyond. Recommended for beginners looking to use PPT in the classroom and intermediate to advanced users looking to improve and share their PPT skills with others. This workshop will focus on the philosophy informing our PPT usage, the wealth of resources available for use, and real-world examples used in the classroom. In general, anyone who is looking to share or improve their PPT skills is welcome to join.

Using Japanese to learn Japanese (Intended for ALTs)

By Suriya Ratnam

Intended for intermediate Japanese language learners (N4-N2), this presentation will discuss how to ease the transition from instruction to immersion by using online resources, media, technology, and developing scalable language acquisition skills.

Workshop 2: Block 2

Improvising Last Minute Lessons

By Jojo George

We've all had to throw together a lesson 15 minutes before class. But there's no need to stress! In this presentation, we'll discuss preventative measures, navigating the situation, and some easy activities you can make in a pinch. Bring some of your best ideas to share with the class!

Language Teaching Strategies

By Steven Basquez

Recommended for ALTs with little experience teaching a foreign language or ESL classes. This workshop will demonstrate teaching techniques for foreign language classes to help students better internalize what they learn in their English class. Fair warning: active participation will be a thing in this one.

Teaching English Pronunciation and Prosody

By Andrew Acs

We will talk about the differences between Japanese and English from a linguistic perspective and how those differences lead to the pronunciation errors we hear in our students. Then, we will discuss applying this information in actual classroom instruction, including a vocabulary game about syllable stress patterns.

“Manage your Managers” Leadership Skills to Thrive in the Workplace

By Charles Vanbourgondien

Although an ALT is an assistant, it doesn't mean you can’t be a leader or implement leadership skills while on the job. In this workshop, you will learn about the skills and practices you can use to be proactive in the workplace to work towards better relationships with your coworkers and better outcomes at work.

Japanese Phonology and Improving Your Pronunciation (Intended for ALTs)

By Aiya Perrine

How can I sound like a native? What does phonology even mean? What the heck is a “mora”? In this presentation, we will be answering these questions and more as we discuss the structure of Japanese phonology. This will involve exercises and pronunciation practice, and you will also be given tips on how to improve your Japanese pronunciation generally.

Workshop 3: Team Teaching Case Studies

In groups, JTEs and ALTs read over the following case studies and then expressed their opinions and discussed what they thought will better the situation. The groups had 10 minutes to analyze each topic. These topics included situations both inside and outside the classroom. The goal was to have JTEs and ALTs communicate their personal experiences and opinions while working together to arrive at an agreeable solution.

See Also

Skills Development Conference
Mid-Year Conference 2008 • 2009 • 2010
Skills Development Conference 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
2020 2021 2022 2023