This year’s ACAMIS ELL conference is going to focus on Translanguaging Pedagogy, a new approach in English instruction that involves building on students’ bilingualism by using their mother-tongue strategically during instruction to support their language learning.

Stay tuned for more updates!

Keynote Speakers

Tatyana Kleyn

Tatyana Kleyn is associate professor and director of the Bilingual Education and TESOL programs at the City College of New York. She has an Ed.D. in international educational development at Teachers College, Columbia University. She received the early career award for the Bilingual Research SIG for the American Educational Research Association. For 2014-15 Tatyana served as president of the New York State Association for Bilingual Education and a Fulbright Scholar in Oaxaca, Mexico. Tatyana is author of “Immigration: The Ultimate Teen Guide,” co-author of “Teaching in Two Languages: A Guide for K-12 Bilingual Educators” (with Reyes) and co-editor of “Translanguaging with Multilingual Learners: Learning from Classroom Moments” (with García). She is the director and co-producer of the documentaries “Living Undocumented: High School, College and Beyond” and “Una Vida, Dos Países [One Life, Two Countries]: Children and Youth (Back) in Mexico.” She was an elementary school teacher in San Pedro Sula, Honduras and Atlanta, Georgia.

Kate Menken

Kate Menken is a Professor of Linguistics and Director of Linguistics and TESOL Programs at Queens College of the City University of New York (CUNY), and a Research Fellow at the Research Institute for the Study of Language in Urban Society at the CUNY Graduate Center. Her research interests include language education policy, bilingual education, and the education of emergent bilinguals in U.S. public schools. Her books are English Learners Left Behind: Standardized Testing as Language Policy (Multilingual Matters, 2008), Negotiating Language Policies in Schools: Educators as Policymakers (co-edited with Ofelia García, Routledge, 2010), and Common Core, Bilingual and English Language Learners: A Resource for Educators (co-edited with Guadalupe Valdés and Mariana Castro, Caslon, 2015). She is Co-Principal Investigator of the CUNY-New York State Initiative for Emergent Bilinguals (NYSIEB) project (www.cuny-nysieb.org) and Co-Principal Investigator of Participating in Literacies and Computer Science (https://www.pila-cs.org). Further information can be found on her website: http://katemenken.org

Planning Committee

Carrie Di

Carrie Di
International School of Nanshan Shenzhen

Twelve years ago, Carrie returned to China and taught EAL at the International School of Nanshan Shenzhen (ISNS). She gained experience teaching in both primary and secondary. EAL teaching is not just about covering content, she believes that it must be about the student, it must be student-centered in order for it to be effective. She always keeps in mind that her goal as an EAL teacher is to teach with consideration to the needs and learning styles of her students. She believes that people learn differently and that the best learning takes place when a student feels secure to take risks and is actively involved in the process of learning.

Carrie Di is the EAL Director and the Head of Language Acquisition. She likes to share experiences with all teachers and encourages them to build a strong team and effectively support students. She feels so lucky to work with so many excellent educators at ISNS.

Lisa Ellery

Lisa Ellery

Western International School of Shanghai

Lisa has been at WISS since 2012 and currently enjoys a dual role as Deputy Principal Primary and Head of PYP EAL. She has been an educator for more than 20 years and has previously taught in her homeland UK where she worked as a school improvement advisor for EAL prior to taking up positions in Japan, Philippines and now Shanghai. Lisa is passionate about teaching English language learners within the PYP curriculum framework; encouraging, nurturing and supporting the language acquisition of those children new to English within the WISS community.

Kristy Goodman

Kristy Goodman
Concordia International School Shanghai

Kristy Goodman is the ELL coach in the middle school at Concordia International School Shanghai. This is her second year at Concordia and eleventh year teaching in Asia. She has previously taught at an international school in Thailand and local schools in Hong Kong and Beijing. She studied for her bachelors degree at the University of Wisconsin, surprisingly, in Spanish and zoology. Her masters is in TESOL K-12 from Teachers College, Columbia University. Kristy’s passions include functional grammar, language assessments, scuba diving and cats. This is her first year on the committee.

Andrea Griego

Andrea Griego
Yew Chung International School of Shanghai

Andrea Griego is the Student Support & Wellbeing Coordinator at YCIS Shanghai, Pudong- Regency Park Campus where she leads the Student Support Team which includes the English as an Additional Language, Learning Resource and Counseling departments. She provides in-house professional development for teachers focusing on strategies for ESL students in the mainstream classroom, differentiation, and data collection and analysis. Aside from leading her team, Andrea teaches one EAL class and conducts admission’s interviews. She has been at YCIS for five years and is part of the campus leadership team. As a seasoned educator, Andrea has worked in the United States, Untied Arab Emirates and Colombia. Andrea led the ACAMIS ELL Conference Committee in 2017 when the conference was held at YCIS Shanghai. She has been delighted to be part of the committee for three years and will pass the torch on this July.

Maureen McCoy

Maureen McCoy
Keystone Academy

Maureen is the head of middle school at Keystone Academy in Beijing, where she also teaches MYP grade eight Language and Literature. Before her work as an administrator, Maureen taught ELL, French, and History in the United States for more than twenty years. She says that she can’t help teaching language, since we use language in all our teaching. Her doctoral dissertation was on Mainstream Teachers’ Experiences with English Language Learners’ Acquisition of Academic Language.

Lori Zhai

Lori Zhai
International School of Tianjin

Lori Zhai is a MYP teacher at the International School of Tianjin (IST), teaching both Language Acquisition and Humanities for EAL (HEAL). She has been at IST for 5 years and previously worked as an elementary ELL teacher in the US. Lori is a Grade 6 Homeroom teacher and helps young students acclimate smoothly into secondary school. She also leads the transition from elementary to secondary prior to students entering in Grade 6, having knowledge in both areas. She has a holistic approach to teaching that includes explicit instruction on different reading and writing strategies. She believes in creating meaningful lessons that engage the interests of her students and help build their confidence. Lori’s organizational skills have served her well throughout the process of bringing so many educators together. Leading the 2018 ACAMIS ELL Conference has been a rewarding experience.


Hotel information will be available soon.

Notes with hotel reservation:
  1. You need to make your own hotel reservation (or for your colleagues who are going to attend the conference/workshop).
  2. Transportation will be provided only between the above hotel(s) and the host school during the workshop or conference days.
  3. You can book other hotels but you (and/or your colleagues) will need to make your own way to the host school.


Registration will be available soon.

Host School Info and Location

The International School of Nanshan Shenzhen (ISNS) is a premier Canadian international school with students ranging from Pre-K through Grade 12. Celebrating 15 years, ISNS is home to over 800 students from 32 different countries. The School provides students with the tools to achieve excellence in academics, personal growth and success beyond the classroom.

ISNS understands every student is different, and is committed to personalize each child’s path to ensure they are passionate about learning. ISNS is a place of opportunity, offering students both the Canadian New Brunswick diploma and the full International Baccalaureate (IB) continuum; PYP, MYP and DP.

David Swanson, Head of School

International School Nanshan Shenzhen
11 Longyuan Road, Taoyuan Sub-District, Nanshan District, Shenzhen, P.R.China, 518055


ISNS Campus Location

2018 Conference Highlights

The following are some of the highlights of the 2018 ELL Conference that took place at International School of Tianjin on April 20-21, 2018: