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ElliiCon2022 Speaker Spotlight: Shelly Terrell

August 11, 2022

This September 15 and 16, 2022, we’ll be hosting ElliiCon, a free, two-day virtual conference to explore simple, effective, and practical strategies that will help you build stronger relationships with your students and engage them in a more meaningful way. This article is part of a series of posts introducing some of the conference speakers.

Shelly Sanchez Terrell is a digital innovator, international speaker, author of Hacking Digital Learning Strategies, Bammy Award winner, and the 2014 National Association of Professional Women’s Woman of the Year. She'll be joining us at ElliiCon on September 16.

After graduating with an English degree, one of Shelly’s friends asked her to work at a university-run summer camp for middle-school-aged kids from other countries. Since Shelly knew Spanish, she was a huge asset to the team. In addition to working with the campers, she was also able to translate for their Spanish-speaking parents.

After that summer, Shelly worked at a high school as an ESL teacher. She taught there for a few years before moving to Germany to teach English to kids and adults. She also spent two months teaching refugee students in Greece.

Currently, Shelly is a teacher in Texas. In addition to English to newcomers, she also teaches English language arts. Her favorite part about being a teacher is having “the ability to give students a voice.”

On using technology in the classroom

As an award-winning digital innovator and author of numerous education technology books, it’s no surprise that Shelly believes it’s important to integrate technology into the classroom. She believes technology works best in conjunction with authentic, non-digital materials.

“Brainstorm on paper or with a dry-erase marker on a whiteboard or with others. Then tie that into technology. Take what you brainstorm and produce a book, video, presentation, or broadcast,” said Shelly. “The whole entire process mimics the real world. It’s about using technology in a healthy and responsible way.”

Shelly presenting at TESOL in Texas.

Shelly is pictured here presenting at the 2015 Texas TESOL State Conference.

As an international speaker and someone who has trained teachers in more than 20 countries as a guest expert, consultant, and ambassador for the US Embassy, Shelly helps other teachers not only teach with technology but also design a virtual learning environment.

“It’s important for students to have a digital home that supports the learning in the classroom and inspires them to practice outside of the classroom,” said Shelly.

On controversial topics

In addition to EdTech, Shelly is also interested in education-related topics that are controversial and spark debate.

“Teachers have different outlooks on policies like grades and homework. Should we have grades? Should we have homework? There are so many ideas and extremes. You see all these perspectives and they help shape your perspective.”

Learn about tools and strategies to get students speaking with Shelly at ElliiCon2022

On September 16, Shelly will be joining us at ElliiCon2022 to talk about how to get students to speak up in class and use their voice in authentic ways. She’ll be sharing strategies, activities, tips, and tools that will inspire even the shyest of English learners to find their voice.

Join us at ElliiCon2022!

Want to attend Shelly's presentation? Register for ElliiCon2022 (it's free!).

To learn more about Shelly, visit her website and blog. You can also follow her on Twitter.

PS. Did you know that Shelly used to be one of our bloggers? Explore her past blog posts for tons of teaching tips and inspiration!

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Comments (2)

Tara Benwell(Author)

We miss having Shelly on our blogging team, but have learned so much from her over the years. Excited to hear about any new tools and strategies she has to share!

Reply to Comment

Melissa Bender(Author)

Thanks for your comment, Tara. I'm looking forward to her presentation too!

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