Conference Program​

Intercambio Summer Conference

We would be thrilled to have you join the third annual Intercambio Summer Conference! 

Click on a session or presenter name below to learn more about this year’s program.

Friday, August 18th

Session 1: 12:30pm-1:00pm MT

(11:30-12:00 p.m. PT / 1:30-2:00 p.m. CT / 2:30-3:00 p.m. ET)

Session 2 Options: 1:15-2:30 p.m. MT

(12:15-1:30 p.m. PT / 2:15-3:30 p.m. CT / 3:15-4:30 p.m. ET)


For many English learners,  class time is the only time they are in an English-speaking environment. While in class, students benefit from different opportunities to hear and practice the mouth movements that help them increase their speaking confidence and be better understood.  This interactive workshop will explore how reading aloud can help English learners improve their speaking skills and will share techniques for expanding reading aloud opportunities to accelerate fluency.


Intercambio’s ESOL programs serve 500+ English learners with over 150 volunteers yearly. Join our inspiring session for insights on creating a community base and impactful language learning programs with limited resources. Learn best practices from our passionate staff and celebrate our remarkable growth journey. Take advantage of this informative experience!


In this engaging workshop with Intercambio’s co-founder, Lee Shainis, you will learn and practice 10 skills to: – Be better understood by English learners of all levels – Improve communication with learners and colleagues from diverse backgrounds – Build access, inclusion, belonging, efficiency, and connection in your classes. We will talk about empathy, why simple language is challenging, using technology, and more. Everyone, including experienced teachers, has room to improve these skills. Simplifying language is fun and challenging!


There are many ways to deepen conversation lessons with varied activities. As reading, writing, and speaking are all important when building conversation skills, we can weave oral language into reading, writing, and literature. Learn creative ways to enhance and enrich conversations, extend vocabulary, improve listening skills, and build comprehension.

Session 3 Options: 2:45-4:00 p.m. MT

(1:45-3:00 p.m. PT / 3:45-5:00 p.m. CT / 4:45-6:00 p.m. ET)


How do we paint a picture of the impact our program has on the community? Some programs do this through extensive data collection. Others, recant the stories they hear when talking to their students or teachers informally. In this workshop, we will look at different ways to tell our program’s story, including sharing Intercambio’s collective Network impact through data that our Family members collect. Whether your program engages in formal data collection or not, this workshop is for you.


English phonemes can be difficult to differentiate and master. This session will present some gestures that can be used to help students differentiate between different English sounds. For example, the sound for “r” is like the sound a little dog makes. The teacher can mimic a little dog to accentuate the difference between rolling an “r” in many languages, and the voiced “r” in English. Attendees will be invited to practice the gestures and present some of their own.


Many English language students have lived in this country for years, but have not learned to “live in English.” This presentation is designed to help ESL educators guide students to behaviors that are associated with conscious learning and the practice of language utilizing the Intercambio curriculum and resources.


Can older students learn a new language? Seniors can and do learn English when instruction is tailored to their particular stage of development. This presentation will offer insights into the challenges that older learners face, and offer strategies for modifying instruction to make it more accessible for them.

Saturday, August 19th

Session 4: 9:00-9:30 a.m. MT

(8:00-8:30 a.m. PT / 10:00-10:30 a.m. CT / 11:00-11:30 a.m. ET)

Session 5 Options: 9:30-10:45 a.m. MT

(8:30-9:45 a.m. PT / 10:30-11:45 a.m. CT / 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m. ET)


Anyone who has hosted a conversation group knows that this rewarding endeavor can pose a variety of challenges, from managing varying fluency levels to navigating controversial topics. Join us to maximize that potential and explore a conversation map tool developed by staff in Plaza, a Denver Public Library program that has led conversation practice groups in Denver since 2008.


For a few years, I’ve been trying to better understand the oral test in the Intercambio Progress Check myself and how best to prepare my students for this challenge. This session will familiarize participants with the sections of the book, provide tips for setting students up for success in the speaking section of the progress checks, and encourage others to share their ideas. With consistent structured practice, students should feel more relaxed when they take the oral test. Likewise, our students should feel more confident when asking and answering questions in the real world. That is indeed success!


Coax your students out of their shells so they gain confidence, grow in competency, and have fun through conversation practice. Learn principles, skills, and conversation activities in this interactive session designed to help you make the most of conversation time in your classes or tutoring sessions.

Session 6 Options: 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m. MT

(10:00-11:15 a.m. PT / 12:00-1:15 p.m. CT / 1:00-2:15 p.m. ET)


Engage students with occasional breaks from textbooks to experience our culture through learning activities and resources that address all four language skills. Immerse them in our traditions. Have your students carved pumpkins? Dyed eggs? Decorated holiday cookies? Picked the Super Bowl winner? Our students have; they loved it!


This workshop will explore ways teachers can use music to support listening comprehension, reinforce grammatical structures/vocabulary, increase speech fluency, enrich cultural/interpersonal discussions, and bring joy to learning. Topics include strategies for finding appropriate songs, models for lesson planning, effective activities, and considerations for an inclusive classroom.


If ‘show up’, ‘miss out’, ‘get over’ or ‘fill in’ confuse your conversation class students, this session will help you explain and teach frequently used phrasal verbs. Learn to introduce, define, and familiarize students with how they’re formed, their meanings, proper intonation, and the skills needed to respond to them.

Session 7 - Closing: 12:30-1:30 p.m. MT

(11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. PT / 1:30-2:30 p.m. CT / 2:30-3:30 p.m. ET)

Questions? Email