Online workshop – 21 August 2021 – “Teach the Rainbow: Queering our ELT Materials and Practices so Everyone Belongs” with Tyson Seburn

Pride Month and CSD reflect a colourful diversity within our culture, but what does this imply for us teachers?

Tyson Seburn asks, “Do we represent people of our societies in our ELT spaces well? Not really. Does representation really matter in an ELT context? Absolutely yes.”

The ability for young people to earnestly explore their identities is increasing. Studies suggest that between 16 and 32% of Generation Z — our current and future learners — identify as part of the LGBTQIA community (see Gallup, 2020, and Ditch the Label, 2017).

In this workshop, we will explore:

  • how important representation and equity are to belonging in our classroom spaces.
  • the key role pedagogical practice and materials design play in this value.

Together, let’s walk through the social spectrum of ELT materials from whitewashed to an array of brilliant colours!

We’ll start with problematising our existing landscape, then explore examples of equally valuing LGBTQIA, other marginalised groups, and localised content. Also, we’ll establish guiding principles for inclusive spaces and how they play out in materials and classroom practice.

These will illustrate how each of us can appropriately represent and value learners, teachers, and others in society, rather than unintentionally exclude them.

There will be time for a Q and A at the end of the workshop. Bring your thoughts, concerns, and materials!


Tyson Seburn, author of Academic Reading Circles (2015) and How to Write Inclusive Materials (2021), is an academic instructor and director at the University of Toronto. He holds an MA in Educational Technology & TESOL (University of Manchester). His interests include teacher development as well as inclusive and critical pedagogy. He is Coordinator of the IATEFL Teacher Development Special Interest Group.

When: Saturday 21 August 2021 from 2 to 5 pm
Where: Online
Registration – ELTABB members: Register on the Ning
Registration – other ELTA members: Email and let us know which ELTA you belong to.