October 2022: Handling ELT PARSNIPS using teacher and producer expertise

PARSNIPS are always a concern for English language teachers. It’s the term for topics which are routinely excluded from learning materials: politics, alcohol, religion, sex, narcotics, isms, pork and sexual and gender identity. Should we exclude these topics completely, and how can we avoid issues that might be particularly problematic for our students. This webinar will show how effective selection of materials combines producer knowledge with teacher expertise.

We’ll explore how to identify suitable resources and approaches to take which safeguard students and teachers alike. With these tools in mind, PARSNIPS can be allowed to grow and flourish in the classroom and enable teachers to teach in a way which fulfils the British Council’s guidelines for Equality Diversity and Inclusion.

Colette has a passion for languages and education and has combined these with her skill as an award-winning producer and journalist for over 30 years. She likes to break the mould and has filmed language programmes all over the world including in refugee camps and rubbish dumps – bringing the real world into learning with all its grittiness.

Colette Thomson

Sensations English lesson resources are great for today’s learners.

Sensations English was a finalist in the 2021 British Council ELTons award for Innovation in Learner Resources and won two British Council ELTons commendations! The first, for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, recognised the global and social range of our English learning content, covering contemporary issues and giving learners access to a wide range of issues and global English voices.

Secondly, we were the only winners of the British Council’s inaugural commendation for Environmental Sustainability and Climate Action! Our content covers such a diverse range of climate and sustainability content, opening learners’ minds to global issues and efforts to resolve them, giving learners the language to engage and raise their voices on this vital area of life.

How Sensations English works

Our lesson resources make equality, diversity and inclusion and sustainability a central element of language learning. We recognise learners as multi-competent speakers and multicultural citizens who are eager to share their ideas and engage with others on important topics in their lives.

The high-quality, global, news-based study resources take a person-centred approach, representing diverse cultures and identities across our seven learning themes. The wide range of video and article news reports includes interactive games and study tools which connect the issues with students’ language learning.

As all resources are graded at five levels (A2-C1), they make sometimes complex topics accessible to all learners. With Sensations English, it’s easy to explore language features and improve sub-skills using inclusive resources which also help to connect lessons to learners’ own situations and experiences. This helps learners to think about their own contexts and develop their own voices.