SAHLA 2018 Languages Symposium

SAHLA 2018 Languages Education Symposium:

“Languages Learning: Building Bridges to Communities & Careers”

Saturday October 20, 2018, 9am – 3pm

Executive Royal Inn, 2828- 23 St. NE


Keynote Speaker:

Hon. Irfan Sabir, Minister of Alberta Human Services on behalf of Alberta Education Minister David Eggen


Acknowledgements: Alberta Education, Alberta Lottery Fund


AGENDA (subject to change)

9:00 am – Registration / Breakfast


9:30 am Symposium Opens. Host: Michael Gretton, Coordinator, SAHLA

Welcome from SAHLA – Michael Embaie, President, SAHLA


9:40 am Session I

Calgary Board of Education Facility Rentals Partnership with SAHLA & Language Schools

Presenters: Catherine Fradgley and Crystal Iliescu, Calgary Board of Education

Host: Michael Gretton, Coordinator, SAHLA


10:30 am Session II

University of Calgary Continuing Education: Teaching Second Languages (TSL) Professional Development Program.

Presenter:  Cristina Constantinescu Senior Instructor, English Language Program University of Calgary, Continuing Education

Host:  Director, SAHLA

In this presentation, we will review the Teaching Second Languages program at the University of Calgary through a review of the courses offered as well as through the voices of past and present course participants.  Learn how taking professional development courses in teaching second languages will enhance the skills you already have as a language educator and how these courses will help inform your own teaching practice. Discover how taking TSL courses can broaden the art and the science of teaching languages.  


11:15 am Session III

Workshop: Motivate Me! This presentation will give participants ideas and strategies for activities and openers to use in their language classrooms to help motivate and focus learners. Participation will be encouraged.

Presenter: Constantine Ioannou, International Languages Educators’ Association (ILEA).

-Host: Director, SAHLA

Constantine Ioannou is an internationally recognized teacher and teacher trainer with over a quarter century experience in language teaching and learning. He works as a program director for international projects and exchanges for the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board. Constantine is a former teacher, curriculum supervisor and materials writer for English and International Languages and serves as Executive Director of ILEA (international languages educators’ association) Ontario.   He is an active teacher trainer for Canadian ESL and international language teachers and international teachers of English. 

12:00 pm lunch

12:15 keynote address

Introduction: Michael Embaie, President, SAHLA

Michael Embaie was born in Eritrea (East Africa or Horn of Africa) and came to Canada in 1983.  Michael has a Bachelor and a Master of Social Work Degree with specialization in Policy and International Social work from the University of Calgary.


Michael completed the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Law program, and as a result is a licensed regulated Immigration Consultant in Canada. Michael completed

a graduate course (Diploma) in International Law and Protection of Refugees at York University, Toronto, Ontario.  


Michael worked for the federal Government of Canada, Department of Immigration and Refugee Board for 25 years as Chief of Research and Documentation Centre for the Prairie Region (Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba); and as a Tribunal Officer and Dispute Resolution Officer for Western Canada.


Michael has been teaching graduate and undergraduate courses as a Sessional Instructor at the University of Calgary, Faculty of Social work and Department of Sociology for 17 years.

Michael also worked for the United Nations on and off for seven years as a Resettlement Consultant and Training Expert.  

Keynote Speaker:  Hon. Irfan Sabir, Minister of Alberta Human Services,

on behalf of Alberta Education Minister David Eggen

1:00 pm Session V – “Technology and Languages Learning”

Presenter: Angela Henders

Host: Director, SAHLA

1:45 pm – Session VI

“Community Language School Panel Session & Discussion around Common School Challenges and Successes”

Principals from 5 different language schools will share some highlights about their school programs including brief history, purpose of school, number of students/teacher/volunteers, curriculum, activities, challenges and successes.

-Calgary Chinese Private School – Lily Lee, Principal

-St. John Chrysostom Russian Language School – Aleksandr Vetsak, Secretary

-Dinka Language Classes – Kuot Majok, Principal

-Brazilian Portuguese Language School – Elisia Teixeira, Principal

-School for East Indian Languages & Performing Arts – President

-Swedish Language School of Calgary – Annika Lindh Cully, Teacher Representative


Host: Director, SAHLA

Common school issues include:

-School Management (including fundraising)

-School Operations

-Curriculum Development and Assessment

-Collaboration with Country of Origin

-Roles and Responsibilities of Teachers/Students/Parents/Volunteers


2:45 pm – Closing remarks


2:55 pm – Symposium Close


3:00 pm SAHLA AGM