We’d like to introduce ourselves as the new IATEFL GISIG joint coordinators who have been co-opted by the GISIG committee. We’re both very happy to take over where Margit left off, and wish her all the very best as IATEFL Vice President.
I’m Linda Ruas, and I’m now teaching ESOL and CELTA courses at Greenwich Community College, London. I’ve been in ELT since 1985 when I first did my RSA Prep Cert, then Diploma two years later, at IH in London. My original plan was to go and teach in Singapore, but, after doing an MA, I ended up living ten years in Brazil instead, where my two daughters were born. I’ve also taught and trained teachers in Kyoto, Japan, and, more recently on volunteer projects in São Tomé and Príncipe and at the refugee camp in Calais. In my spare time, I’ve been running the Easier English wiki New Internationalist for the last four years, and am about to publish some ‘Global Justice in Easier English’ activity books.
I’ve only been in GISIG for two years, and have been Newsletter Editor since April 2015. In GISIG and through inviting people to write articles, I’ve met so many interesting people who are passionate about global issues and bringing global issues into teaching and training teachers, and I’d like to get to know and work together with many more.
My name’s Julietta Schoenmann but I much prefer to be called Jules! I’ve been working as a freelance trainer since 2000 and before that spent 11 years overseas teaching English in a variety of fascinating countries: China, Turkey, the Czech Republic, Eritrea and Slovakia. I did a Master’s degree in Teacher Training for ELT in 1998 and then worked in Bangladesh for 2 years as Regional Training Adviser on a DfID-funded education project. Over the last 16 years my freelance work has taken me all over the world but most of my time is now spent in Nigeria where I’m working on a teacher development project (check out http://www.tdpnigeria.org/ for more information) until 2019.
I’m new to GISIG but feel that being involved will be a great opportunity to share ideas and strategies for embedding global issues more deeply into the classroom. My own work over the years has been partly motivated by a desire for a fairer, more equitable world and this has extended into my personal life too. I’m an active member or supporter of a number of organisations that I believe make positive contributions to our society and beyond: Bristol Hospitality Network (offering accommodation to destitute refugees), Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Greenpeace, The Refugee Council, Human Writes (penfriends with a death row prisoner in North Carolina, USA), Reprieve and Oxfam. I’ve also been vegetarian for over 20 years, am a keen allotment gardener and live with my partner in a self-build, eco-community in Bristol, UK.
Our plans for GISIG are to:
- invite some more people to join the committee
- work with other SIGs on projects such as webinars and the Issues Month
- organise some competitions, for both teachers and learners to write about global issues
And, most important, we want to bring together as many members of GISIG as possible at our ‘English for Peace’ PCE next April before IATEFL Glasgow.
Hope to see many of you there, if not before!
With all good wishes
Linda and Jules