March 2021
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LEADERSHIP UPDATES
LETTER FROM THE EDITORS

Trisha Dowling and John Turnbull


Trisha Dowling


John Turnbull

As we welcome a new calendar year, we hope that everyone is finding the strategies and strength necessary to continue moving forward and taking things day by day. In June 2020, when we were discussing potential newsletter themes for this edition, it might have felt like we were in the middle of disruption of all kinds. Now, almost a year later, life and teaching as we know them are still in a state of disruption. Being in “the middle,” as we felt all that time ago, seems to be quite a long period. As we continue doing our best with managing our work and our own well-being, I hope that each of us can embrace this time of disruption because it is only by disturbing our norms that we can make real and lasting change that will incrementally make the world a better place for everyone.

In this newsletter, we present a variety of submission types that cause us to reflect on our personal stories and journeys and look at ways that we can disrupt narratives in our own teaching that do not serve the common good.

Our first submission is from Justin Jacobs, an instructor in Istanbul who presents experiences and strategies for disrupting heteronormativity in English Language Teaching. He and his colleague are working together to “increase awareness of sexism, heterosexism, and cissexism in ELT and work with other professionals to develop ways to disrupt these issues.”

Nayereh Nouri shares a look at the individual impact that the disruption of student visas causes. This piece makes what we may see as a news headline into a more personal account.

Helen Margaret Murray shares a practical lesson plan that guides educators in teaching about both Indigenous Peoples and environmental conflicts, aiming to disrupt the way that students think about their own culture and the world.

Warifa Sobh reflects on what she stands for and introduces us to who she is through her “I Am” poem. I hope her openness invites you to be open with yourself and reflect on who you are and what is important to you.

We hope that you enjoy these dynamic submissions. We welcome comments and discussions around these contributions through the SRIS discussion board. As always our authors’ perspectives are their own, and our newsletter should be taken as a forum for our membership to share their views about issues that are important to them, which may or may not reflect the opinions or official positions of TESOL International Association.

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