What Thanksgiving is really about by Dr. J

Grace is not part of consciousness; it is the amount of light in our souls, not knowledge nor reason. Pope Francis

These are excellent guiding words to share Thanksgiving with grace & love and gift international students with an afternoon of that elusive “feeling at home.”    For all of us who have traveled far from our homelands for extended periods, we know about those moments of melancholy.

Yes, academic progress is imperative.  Yes, getting a good score on a TOEFL can be the “make or break” for a successful university application.  Nevertheless, I feel that there is more to teaching.  Teaching is not only planning and delivering the very best curriculum to our students, but it is also an opportunity to model grace, loving kindness and caring.

Every term, before my students go off on their journeys, I cook a meal in my home, and we spend the time to talk, laugh and sometimes make music.  Over the years, I received emails or letters on how important this experience was for them. How the meal, being at “home” was the “light” of their American experience.

Author: drcowinj

As an Assistant Professor & Practicum Coordinator for TESOL and Bilingual Programs at Touro College, Graduate School of Education my focus is on the Responsibility to Touro Students (Teaching), Responsibility to the Discipline (Scholarship), and Responsibility to Touro College and Community (Service). As the Practicum Coordinator, my Teacher Professional Practice identifies those aspects of a teacher’s responsibilities that have been documented through empirical studies and theoretical research as promoting improved student learning. In the framework, the complex activity of teaching is divided into the seven New York State Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) Standards for teacher evaluation that are clustered into four domains of teaching responsibility (as framed in the Teachscape Danielson Rubric approved by New York State). I strive to inspire students to be creative and to model the love of lifelong learning by inculcating the habits and attitudes that create agile mindsets. 21st-century education extends well beyond the classroom and incorporates online learning technologies for L2 language acquisition and current global trends in teaching English as a Second Language. I participate fully in the larger world of TESOL academic discipline as elected Vice President and Chair Elect for the New York State, NYSTESOL organization, for the 2021 conference. Ongoing research, expressed in scholarly contributions to the advancement of knowledge is demonstrated through publications (articles in Education Update), presentations, and participation in academic conferences, blogging, and other scholarly activities, including public performances and exhibitions at conferences and workshops. Of particular interest to me are The Blockchain of Things and its implications for Higher Education; Current Global Trends in TESOL; Developing Materials and Resources in Teaching English; E-learning & Micro-Methodology in TESOL; E-Resources Discovery and Analysis; and Language Acquisition and the Oculus Rift in VR.

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