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Professional Learning Networks for performing and inspiring ELL educators

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What is the role of Professional Learning Networks (PLNs) in informing and inspiring ELL educators? How have tools like Twitter helped create, nurture, and expand professional development opportunities? How do PLNs impact the students we serve? What about the many educators who don’t engage in this type of learning? We discuss the questions and much more as we welcome Emily Francis to Highest Aspirations.

Emily is an English as a Second Language teacher at W.M. Irvin Elementary School in Concord, North Carolina. She serves students in Kindergarten through fifth grade with various English proficiency levels. Emily’s experience as an English Language Learner inspired her to become an ESL teacher and affords her a deep understanding of the challenges her students must overcome to find success. Emily earned a BA in Spanish, and a MAT in ESL from UNC-Charlotte. She serves as a professional development facilitator, motivational speaker, Keynote, ESL PLC lead, cooperating teacher, and mentor to beginning ESL teachers. Emily served as teacher liaison to the Cabarrus County Board of Education as Teacher of the Year 2016. Emily is a member of Teaching Channel’s Fab Five ELL Squad and Team member of Confianza LLC. As a leader, Emily’s focus is to inspire students to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more. 

During the episode, we discuss everything from establishing a PLN on Twitter to her appearance on The Ellen Degeneres show.

I was inspired not only by Emily’s journey to fulfilling her dream of becoming a teacher, but also by her drive to constantly better herself personally and professionally. She is a fierce advocate for the students she serves and provides solid ideas about how teachers can provide them with the best education possible.

You can learn more about the work Emily is doing by visiting her blog and following her on Twitter, where she regularly shares her work and other resources. She will also be a keynote speaker at the VirtuEL Conference on June 23rd.

Emily recommends the following two books for anyone who works with English Language Learners:

You can listen and subscribe to Highest Aspirations on iTunes here.