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26 JUNE 2015

Winner! Ganador! Jushōsha!

Winner! Ganador! Jushōsha!

Translation and Own-language Activities has won again! At last night’s Society of Authors’ Awards, Philip Kerr’s acclaimed handbook scooped the first prize for ELT Writing.

The Authors' Awards honour new and established writers of novels, short stories, poetry, non-fiction and English Language Teaching Writing. The Society of Authors was founded in 1884 and its first President was Lord Tennyson! This year’s awards ceremony was hosted by Sarah Waters at the Army and Navy Club in London.

The Society of Authors judges described the book as: “an excellent handbook for practising teachers who have long struggled with the ‘rights’ and ‘wrongs’ of using mother tongue in the classroom. It is well researched and well written and will provide welcome support and confidence to teachers in a field where there have been multiple views and a lack of real guidance.”

Taking into account both the growing interest and concerns about use of translation in English lessons, Philip’s aim was to write a handbook that demonstrated the potential advantages of thoughtful use of L1 in language learning, as well as lessening many teachers’ sense of guilt at using the language they share with their students. The paradox at the heart of this book is that we need to increase the amount of English that is spoken in the class (both by teachers and by students), but that one important way of doing this is by making occasional use of the shared language. Philip discusses this in more detail on the Cambridge Conversations blog.

For Philip, along with Series Editor Scott Thornbury and Publisher Karen Momber, this was a second big win, having already picked up the English-Speaking Union Award for the same book. It also made the shortlist for Innovation in Teacher Resources at the ELTon Awards earlier this month.

Translation and Own-language Activities is part of the Cambridge Handbooks for Language Teachers series, now consisting of over fifty handbooks that offer practical ideas and activities as well as insights into current thinking about English language teaching.

New for this award-winning series in 2016 will be Penny Ur's 100 Teaching Tips, the first of a number of 'pocket editions' handbooks.

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