YLT iatefl
Our Mission

Our mission is to lead, drive change and set standards in Teaching English to Young Learners and Teenagers (2 – 17 years old) for training and development, classroom practice and assessment. We aim to provide practical advice regarding different models of YL ELT (e.g. EFL, EMI, CLIL), age-appropriate pedagogy, child-safe recruitment as well as suitable ELT qualifications for young learner teachers. Our members include classroom practitioners, teacher trainers, researchers, academic managers and materials / content developers working in both state and private sectors worldwide.

We source inspiration and guidance from UNESCO and other global organisations which focus on education.  The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child defines a ‘child’ as a person below the age of 18, unless the laws of a particular country set the legal age for adulthood younger.  18 and 19 year-olds therefore have different rights and each age range under 18 have specific requirements regarding methodology, course structures, materials, learning environment and appropriately qualified teachers as well as those related to duty of care, child protection and safeguarding.

As David Graddol in English Next (2006) states, ‘The age at which children start learning English has been lowering across the world.  English has moved from the traditional ‘foreign languages’ slot in lower secondary school to primary school – even pre-school’.  We therefore acknowledge that ‘Young Learners’ is an umbrella term encompassing all these age ranges and that there are differences in our members’ national educational systems and transition stages. We advocate use of the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) mapping criteria which helps us to refer to these differences http://www.uis.unesco.org/Education/Documents/isced-2011-en.pdf and provides a common terminology for clarity, consistency and knowledge sharing:

  • Early Years (2 – 5 year olds)
  • Primary (6 – 10 year olds)
  • Lower Secondary (11 – 14 year olds)
  • Upper Secondary (15 – 17 year olds)
Latest Updates

IATEFL 2018 PCE Programme

Date: Monday 9 April 2018
enue: The Brighton Centre, Brighton UK


The highlight of the annual YLTSIG events calendar is our Pre Conference Event, and the 2018 theme focuses on applying the United Nations Rights of the Child and Sustainable Development Goals to Young Learners ELT.

Annamaria Pinter and Harry Kuchah Kuchah are our plenary speakers and will expertly unpack the what, why and how of children’s rights and the SDGs. We will build on their plenaries using TED style talks by speakers representing early years, primary and secondary ELT contexts. We are thrilled to announce the following line up of global YL expertise:

Early Years
Gail Ellis & Jen Dobson

Nayr Ibrahim & Katherine Bilsborough

Lower Secondary
Carol Read & Laura McWilliams

Upper Secondary
Judy Boyle & Rachael Pooley

The PCE will culminate with a debate around a ‘pedagogy-changing’ motion led by a specialist panel.

Join us in Brighton to discover how rights-based pedagogies and incorporating the Sustainable Development Goals can transform your work with children and teenagers.

Registration for the PCE and the Conference is now open through this link.



Welcome our new IATEFL YLTSIG Committee Members!

We would like to announce the election of three new YLTSIG committee members.

We are thrilled to welcome Sinem Kinayman DaridereSimon Pounder and Bruno Andrade as they take up the volunteer roles as Online Events Coordinator (Webcon), Business Development Coordinator and PR Coordinator respectively.

Find out more about Sinem, Simon and Bruno here.


We are delighted to be hosting Africa TESOL’s inaugural Secondary ELT Pre Conference Event. This will be expertly delivered by our partners, ELT Consultants at the Africa TESOL 3rd International Conference in Dakar, Senegal, 4 – 6 May 2018. Learn more about the work of ELT Consultants in the informative video below and visit the Africa TESOL website to find out more! africatesol.org

Find out more about ELT Consultants in this video:

Follow YLTSIG on Social Media!

Make sure you follow YLTSIG through our social media accounts to share resources and ideas, and connect with other YL teachers around the globe!

Join our Facebook Group

Follow us on Twitter  and use the #iateflylt hashtag!

Subscribe to our new YouTube Channel

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