40 years TESOL Greece

Ioanna Georgakopoulou & Valia Gkotsi

Day: Sunday Time: 16:45-17:30 Room: NIKI (Mezzanine)

Using Drama to Explore Human Rights Concepts in the Classroom.

Ioanna Georgakopoulou
Valia Gkotsi

This practical workshop will use real life stimuli to raise awareness on human rights and human trafficking. It focuses on student’s ability to empathise but also challenges their way of thinking. Participants will leave with practical tools they can use in the classroom with different levels and age groups.

Keywords:Drama, Theatre, Human Rights, Trafficking, Empathy

Ioanna Georgakopoulou, MA, BA, Drama and Theatre Pedagogue/ Head of Academic Learning Centre, AMC College, Piraeus, Greece.

Valia Gkotsi, MA, BA, Cert., Drama and Theatre Pedagogue/ IB Deputy Coordinator, English Teacher and Examiner, Ionios School, Athens, Greece.

Ioanna Georgakopoulou's Interview

Who is Ioanna Georgakopoulou? What is the single characteristic that you want most people to know about you?

I think that the main characteristic that leads my course as a professional and a human being is that I am an enthusiast! I like learning and evolving constantly in all the areas of my life!

How is your presentation connected to the umbrella topic of the conference of “The 5 Ts of TESOL: Teach, Train, Transform, Transcend, Trust”?

The main Ts that this presentation is focusing on are Transform and Transcend. For once, it is not about the learning outcomes that much as for the sharing and communication among the classroom, global understanding and an awareness of the society around us.

Which is your favorite T? Teach, Train, Transform, Transcend, or Trust, and why?

If I have to choose one, and it is indeed a difficult task, I would probably go with Transcend. We live in a time where change is inevitable and the role of the educator is essentially changing through time. We find ourselves caught in a whirl of inspiration to surpass what we were and reach new heights all the time. Thus, the notion of transcending holds such force within it that is necessary for the changes and the developments of our times.

What does TESOL Greece mean to you?

TESOL Greece has been for a very very long time a family, a group pf people with whom we have shared ideas and dreams, we have worked very hard to promote and keep the standards high (being on the Board that was) and it always helped you connect to people that share the same anxieties and dreams at the same time. It has been and is a vital part of our reality!

What are your expectations from the 40th TESOL Greece Annual International Convention?

I think that in every convention every year the expectations are to learn and reflect, to focus on your ideas but also expand them and of course reconnect with friends and enjoy the company and the wealth of knowledge that is collective!

If you could send a wish to TESOL Greece, which becomes 40 this year, what would it be?

Inspiration, love, and dedication to knowledge and life is my wish for TESOL’s first 40s that I hope will lead to next 40!

 

Valia Gkotsi's Interview

Who is Valia Gkotsi? What is the single characteristic that you want most people to know about you?

I guess my passion for teaching English through Drama, for I strongly believe in the benefits of drama/ theatre in education, since it builds an environment of trust and cooperation in class, where everyone can contribute regardless of their competency level, approaching all types of students’ learning styles equally. Drama builds strong relationships among students and teachers, transforming the classroom into a safe space where everyone is valued and aspires to reach their maximum potential.

How is your presentation connected to the umbrella topic of the conference of “The 5 Ts of TESOL: Teach, Train, Transform, Transcend, Trust”?

Our presentation is based on the concepts of experiential learning and more specifically on how drama can foster students’ learning, therefore I believe that “transform”, “transcend” and even “trust” are connected with what we will share with our audience. Human Rights concepts, empathy, or open-mindedness cannot actually be taught, but rather they can be experienced, discussed and perceived in action, and this is what we aspire to achieve through our session. In that way, one can “learn” how to escape from their comfort zone, expand their thinking and become a more responsible citizen of today’s world.

Which is your favorite T? Teach, Train, Transform, Transcend, or Trust, and why?

My favourite T is Transform, as I have great faith in the transformative power a teacher could have over a student’s life. If we, as teachers, could inspire even one student yearly to change and become a better version of themselves, wanting to accomplish more and believing in themselves, I would consider our profession a worthy one, and our influence admirable.

What does TESOL Greece mean to you?

Having served TG for some years from many different posts, I could encapsulate TG’s meaning into the feeling of being around family while having productive fun. I truly consider my year as Chair of TESOL Greece an eye-opening experience for me for numerous reasons, since it had been a year that changed my way of thinking as an individual and a professional and gave me valuable life lessons. I will not stop believing in TG’s potential and I am sure it will grant us many more memorable experiences in the future.

What are your expectations from the 40th TESOL Greece Annual International Convention?

I am confident that the Board of Directors has organized a promising event of high standards, well thought and mapped out to provide us with stimulating opportunities from the things we will learn and experience in the keynote speeches, presentations and workshops. It will also be another wonderful opportunity to meet and mingle with old friends and colleagues and meet new ones that could ignite new collaborations and life-long friendships.

If you could send a wish to TESOL Greece, which becomes 40 this year, what would it be?

I wish TESOL Greece to prosper and thrive throughout the years! TG, keep reminding us why our profession is so wonderful and how many more things we still have to learn in order to advance and develop. To many more, TG! Happy 40th birthday!

 

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