1:15 - 2:05 PM
Writing to Communicate: Using E-mail Penpals to Cross Borders
Kristin Helland, Seoul National University
Victoria Muehleisen, Waseda University
Here to see a copy of the Handout for this presentation
As the possibilities of modern technology become widely available in
classrooms all over the world, an email penpal project offers the potential
for educators to make a positive contribution to globalization while improving
their students' English. Communicating through email brings a new and exciting
element to the old idea of penpals. Although setting up a supervised class-to-class
project requires some effort on the part of the teacher, the benefits are
This presentation will describe a cross-national email penpal project
first implemented in 1998 by two university teachers in Japan and Korea.
They will describe how they initially got the project off the ground, the
steps they followed to bring it to fruition, and the benefits their students
derived from participating in the project. They will provide guidelines
for other teachers who wish to try the same kind of activity in their classes,
and will answer questions from the audience.
Kristin Helland currently teaches at Seoul National University in
Korea. This is her fourth year in Korea. She received her MA
in TESOL from San Francisco State University, and her BA in Cultural Anthropology
and MA in Latin Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
She has worked in various capacities in the field of education including
research and administration in migrant education and literacy programs.
Her interests include computer-assisted instruction, multicultural and
global education, and curriculum development.
Victoria Muehleisen has been teaching English at the Institute of
Language Teaching in Waseda University , Tokyo since 1994.
While working in Japan, she finished her dissertation on antonymy in English,
receiving her Ph.D. in linguistics from Northwestern University (Illinois,
USA) in 1997. Her research interests include semantics, corpus linguistics,
computer-assisted language instruction, and the use of video in language