Award Categories

Teaching very young learners (4-6 years)

This Award celebrates teaching very young learners (kindergarten level) who are full of curiosity and keen to learn about everything and anything in a non-formal way.
This Award recognizes innovation/creativity in introducing a foreign language to very young learners. You need to demonstrate:

How you take advantage of children’s curiosity to explore and discover new things.

How you hold their attention and create a positive learning environment.

Teaching Primary school learners (6-12 years)

This Award celebrates caring and enthusiastic teachers, who catch and rivet students’ attention, make their lessons exciting and enjoyable and produce measurable results.

  • How do you introduce language and provide opportunities and reasons for foreign language learning?
  • How do you motivate children and get their full attention?
  • How do you encourage children so that they feel confident and don’t give up?
  • How do you encourage co-operation?

Teaching through Arts & Crafts

This Award seeks to recognise the institutions or individuals that have successfully incorporated arts, crafts or drama in order to enable students to develop communicative, collaborative and critical literacies. Do you use Arts:

  • to get students to work on projects in groups?
  • to include cross-curricular activities in the language classroom?
  • to promote cooperation and creativity?
  • to enhance language retention, confidence and motivation?

Teaching Languages through storytelling

Every human being is creative by nature. Stories are an excellent tool to generate interest in the foreign language classroom; they trigger students’ imagination, activate their background knowledge, help them make associations and explore the culture elements of a story.

  • What means do you deploy to communicate the main message of the story?
  • Do you use visual and/or musical language?
  • Do you use psychical props such as toys, pictures or puppets?
  • How does storytelling impact language learning and acquisition?

Teaching through Drama

Drama is a teaching method, which allows students to explore the curriculum using several multiple intelligences. Students are fully involved in learning with drama. They are immersed into the subject. Their bodies, minds, and emotions are extremely active when they become engrossed in the drama.

Drama is widely used in modern language learning settings to enable students to develop language skills through role- play. Many drama strategies can be used to reinforce new vocabulary and develop speaking skills.

  • Children love to role-play and make up imaginary worlds. Instead of sitting passively looking at the book, students participate and learn actively.
  • The results are much better in terms of language retention, confidence and motivation.
  • Pupils learn to work together as a team and become more confident in speaking English.

Creativity in Teaching Language Skills

Creativity in Teaching Language Skills recognizes and celebrates methods, strategies and approaches that generate ideas, possibilities, and alternatives.

For example in teaching Writing: do you use diagrams, pictographs, mind maps, circle-writing activities, a memoir or a biography-based assignment that gets students excited about writing?

In teaching Reading: do you involve students in reading aloud and acting out the passage, questioning,summarizing,visualizing the story, bringing the characters to life or even drawing the story?

In teaching Listening: do you use clips from movies and TV shows, music videos, movie trailers, Ted talks, interviews etc. and turn them into personalized language learning lessons?

In teaching Speaking: do you use open questions that have many possible answers? What prompts do you use to make your students think and speak? Do you brainstorming to generate ideas? Do your use visualization techniques?

Teaching for raising awareness for social issues

This Award recognizes practices of teaching a foreign language through social issues, allowing students to develop a strong sense of global citizenship and responsible living. You need to demonstrate:

  • how you solicit personal responses using social issues or current events
  • how the themes that students explore connect to their lives (e.g. ‘Preserving the Environment’, ‘Healthy Eating’, ‘Family and Friendship’, ‘Work and Socialization’, ‘Immigration’ ‘Bullying’ etc.)
  • how students discuss and plan courses of action, predict outcomes and write or talk about them
  • how they are guided to achieve understanding from a perspective that is both personal and meaningful.

Teaching Adults

Adults usually want to perfect or continue learning a foreign language for study, work or travel purposes.

This award celebrates the smooth transition of adults in the classroom or in face-to face teaching and learning environments.

This award also recognizes adult education initiatives that provide English lessons to refugees and/or asylum seekers.

  • How do you facilitate adult learning?
  • What methods and approaches do you use to develop adults’ language skills?
  • How do you ensure engagement and participation?

Using technology in the classroom

This Award recognises excellence in the use of technology by a teacher or a school. Judges will be looking for tangible evidence that the thoughtful and considered implementation of technology has had a positive impact on educational outcomes of students.

Educational platforms

This Award celebrates the use of educational platforms that provide learning opportunities in and out of the classroom.

How do you use this application?

  • Do you give learners the tools to access material taught in class and expand their knowledge through exploring various available sources?
  • Do students upload assignments, projects and other tasks on the platform that can be evaluated by their teachers?
  • Is educational content such as video skits, recordings, success stories, power point presentations etc. shared with all stakeholders in the school?   

Corporate Educational platforms

This Award celebrates the use of educational corporate platforms that are engineered to cover teacher training and testing needs. 

Regarding teacher training: 

  • Is there abundant material for teacher training and teacher development?
  • Is it regularly updated?
  • Is it easy to navigate?

Regarding testing:

  • Is the platform easy to access and navigate?
  • Is testing administered in a secure environment?
  • Is the platform equipped with surveillance software to detect cheating?

The Express Publishing Award for Gamification in education

This Awards recognizes gamification techniques that increase students’ engagement and motivate them to perform better. It also celebrates the creation of a compelling learning environment for students to absorb new concepts.

Gamification often involves attempts to wrap a game narrative around a course, topic, or project. 

  • Do you teach important skills such as problem-solving, collaboration and communication through digital games?
  • Do you teach content through digital games?
  • Do you grade and assess performance in a digital game?

Excellence in School Facilities

This award celebrates schools that are safe, with pleasantly decorated classrooms, and unconventional classroom layouts that allow students to move freely, communicate and collaborate with their peers and enjoy learning in a happy atmosphere.

Social inclusion initiative

This Award recognises a programme or initiative that has made an outstanding contribution towards supporting students with disabilities and/or can demonstrate positive learning experiences with peers of diverse ethnic, linguistic and cultural background.

Community and Collaboration

This Award recognises schools that can show how they work with local people or collaborate with other schools, local businesses and the community. Judges will need to see evidence of effective engagement. You need to demonstrate how:

  • You support learning by inviting community members to talk to your students about a subject e.g. social media protection, healthy eating, sports, etc.
  • You combine the teaching of English with raising your community’s awareness of social issues such as bullying, cyberbullying, preserving the environment, recycling, etc.

Support for special needs students

This Award is for those who can effectively demonstrate initiatives and/or practices that accommodate students with special needs and provide equal opportunities for success. Judges will look at how you structure your lessons so that you produce successful results and keep students with special needs motivated.

Blended learning

This Award praises educators who combine online digital media with traditional classroom methods and allow students to have control over time, place, path, or pace of their learning.

  • Have you used the flipped classroom model in which students use independent study time to watch content that introduces new concepts?
  • Have you then used class time to engage your students in group work and discussion about this information?
  • Do you use a learning platform that has allowed you to automate areas that had previously taken up a great deal of your time e.g. in assessment and feedback?

The York Press Award for Innovation in language learning

This Award goes to educators who have transformed a course/class and have inspired students through this transformation. Have you introduced:

new products and services, such as new syllabi, textbooks or educational resources?

new processes for delivering services, such as e-learning services?

new ways of organising activities, for example communicating with students and parents through digital technologies?

Creativity in language learning

The Creativity Award goes to educators who think ‘out of the box’, and come up with fresh, divergent responses, new solutions to problems, or ways of looking at problems.

Have you incorporated openness in several levels of the learning processes engaging the learners in the production, use and reuse of content?

Have you adapted materials e.g. a coursebook activity in such a way as to give your students the chance to improvise?

Have you encouraged students to discover things for themselves about language features highlighted in their coursebook?

Excellence in Teaching Foreign Languages

This Award refers to the crowning achievement of any teacher or language institution that has set the bar of language teaching and learning high. It refers to teachers and language institutions that provide tangible evidence of fostering and effectively cultivating excellence in all aspects related to teaching and learning the target language.

The most prominent aspects include methodology and pedagogy, employment procedures, teachers’ training and qualitative impact in learners’ certification and well-being. Management, administration and policies for innovation may be considered as well. The standards of excellence should be well supported and defined. Testimonials from the stakeholders should also be included.

Excellence in Digital Presence Award

This award celebrates a school’s or an educational related organization’s communication via the Internet and social media that provides:

  1. As much information as possible about its courses, its curriculum and how it is implemented, the printed and digital materials that are used, about the teaching staff and their qualifications, and about achievements in language exams.

As much information as possible for demonstrating and promoting its educational related services and products.

Online Learning

Online education has become more popular in the fast-paced growing society. In addition, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, schools and individual teachers had to embrace technology, adapt to the new teaching situation and offer tuition using various platforms and digital tools.

  • Have you introduced synchronous or asynchronous learning in your school?
  • Have your students benefitted from this ‘new’ medium of instruction?
  • Have your students developed a skill more easily in a digital environment than in a traditional one?

Teacher support and Training

Supporting teachers in their professional development leads to improved outcomes for learners. Good quality training and reflective practice are essential parts of a teacher’s professional life. 

  • Have you made training courses –online or face-to-face- available to your teachers?
  • How often do you train your teachers?
  • Have your teachers changed their teaching practices after training?
  • What impact did this change have on students’ learning?

The Express Publishing School of the Year Award

This award celebrates schools that are inclusive and supportive of all students, and/or have trust in their staff, place staff development at the top of their agenda, establish bonds with their local communities donating, and/or helping vulnerable and marginalized groups of people in their respective areas.

The Express Publishing Educator of the Year Award

This award recognises a teacher’s commitment to CPD, language teaching and dedication to helping students to learn. 

Nomination criteria

Entrants must provide evidence of participation in courses and/or in seminars/webinars that have improved his/her teaching skills and competences.

Entrants must demonstrate evidence that they have created a supportive, encouraging and inclusive learning environment and have delivered quality language instruction based on well-articulated theory, philosophy and educational research. Student success in language exams is also considered.

Entrants must demonstrate evidence that they have presented in national and international conferences, workshops, seminars, webinars and other educational events, that they have submitted articles in national and international journals and have contributed to the development of new materials.

The Express Publishing Lifetime Achievement Award

This award is presented in recognition of an individual’s outstanding leadership and contribution to the ELT sector for more than 25 years.