Michael Free

KOTESOL IC 2021 Conference Chair

I love languages, teaching, and helping people learn. It's messy and occasionally frustrating, but that's part of what makes it great! I teach in a small university in Korea, about an hour east of Seoul. Oh, and I'm this year's Conference Chair, which turned out to be, well, not exactly what I had planned — thanks, Corona! Feel free to message me, and just call me Michael!


Sessions

The Problem of Native-Speakerism: Why Haven't We Resolved This?

Synchronous-Zoom
Sun, Feb 21, 15:30-18:00 JST

The "Conference Chair's Panel" is an initiative of this year's conference that we hope will become a tradition. It will take an issue of particular importance or interest to the Conference Chair, and gather some experts to discuss it. This year, the topic is Native-Speakerism. Why Native-Speakerism? Because it's important? Yes. Because it's a complex issue? Yes, that too. It's not because it hasn't been discussed, and neither is it because ELT professionals don't realise native-speakerism is a problem. It's because we — with the 'we' being ELT professionals —haven't resolved this issue to most people's satisfaction. Fortunately, all four members of this panel are all well-equipped to talk about the issue, with each bringing a different perspective. The question that serves as our point of departure will open up into a dialogue that will hopefully offer some fresh insights and take us further down the road to resolving this important problem. Panel Members: Marek Kiczkowiak Robert Lowe Hyun-jung Shin Varinder Unlu Angie White Moderator: Michael Free

Opening Ceremony

Synchronous-Zoom
Fri, Feb 19, 19:00-20:00 JST

We begin KOTESOL 2021 with some of the traditional pomp and circumstance, but also with a few twists. Your hosts will be Bryan Hale (President) and Rhea Metituk (1st Vice-President). They will welcome everyone, including our special guests. Maybe they'll do something else, as well. International Conference Chair Michael Free will muse and amuse (he hopes) with a preamble to the main event, entitled "Love and Messes" We'll also be asking how you are feeling. The Zoom room will open at 6:00, and we'll also be welcoming people on our Discord server as well!

Korean Film: Hanyeo / The Housemaid (1960)

Synchronous-Zoom
Sat, Feb 20, 21:00-23:00 JST

Join conference chair Michael Free as we offer a chance to view some classic Korean films. These are all available free of charge via the Korean Film Archive's YouTube channel. After some brief introductory remarks, you can sit back and relax after a hard day of conferencing and watch a Korean classic. Though not R-rated, this film is not suitable for children. Hanyeo, or The Housemaid, is a melodrama (sometimes classified as a thriller, or even horror) movie from 1960. Synopsis: "After his pregnant wife gets tired working at home, Dong-sik Kim hires a housemaid to help his wife with the household chores. However, the housemaid turns out to be more than they bargained for."

Korea Film: Sopyonje

Synchronous-Zoom
Sun, Feb 21, 21:00-23:00 JST

Join conference chair Michael Free as we offer a chance to view some classic Korean films. These are all available free of charge via the Korean Film Archive's YouTube channel. After some brief introductory remarks, you can sit back and relax after a hard day of conferencing and watch a Korean classic. Sopyonje is a 1993 musical drama. It was directed by Im Kwon-taek, and tells us of a family of traditional musicians trying to make a living. You can read about the importance of this film here: http://blog.lareviewofbooks.org/the-korea-blog/seopyeonje-surprise-art-house-megahit-showed-korea-forgotten-culture/

Korean Film: Kongjui & Patchui (1978)

Synchronous-Zoom
Tue, Feb 23, 21:00-23:00 JST

Join Conference Chair Michael Free for another night of Korean cinema! Tonight, following David Valente's plenary on young learners, we will view a film that is suitable for the whole family: Kongjui & Patchui. If you read this synopsis on Wikipedia, you'll immediately recognize this traditional story's similarity to a certain Western folk tale: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kongjwi_and_Patjwi

Korean Film: A Story of Hong Gil Dong (1978)

Synchronous-Zoom
Sat, Feb 27, 21:00-23:00 JST

The final film we we screen this year is based on another Korean folk tale, Hong Gil Dong. This story tells of the rise of the lowborn Gil Dong, who intelligence, skills, and temperament liken him to another folk hero, Robin Hood. It has been touted as "arguably the single most important work of classic Korean fiction. It has been seen in print, movies, TV shows, novels, and comic books. This cartoon version is excitement for the whole family!