English Teaching Methodology

Reflections on TESOL International Convention & Expo 2024, Tampa, Florida (USA)


From the 20th to the 23rd of March 2024, Professor Maria Eisenmann and Associate Professor Dr. Nataliia Lazebna, representing the TEFL Chair (JMU), attended the TESOL International Convention & Expo 2024 in Tampa, Florida (USA), the largest professional development event in the TESOL field. Featuring over 4,000 participants from different parts of the world, 60 exhibits, and an array of workshops, interactive sessions, speeches, and networking activities, the event provided a comprehensive platform for scholarly and professional engagement. The focus of the TEFL Chair (JMU) delegates was on transnational and translingual identities of EFL learners, multiliteracy-oriented pedagogy, the utilization of counter-narratives to foster empathy in EFL contexts, integrating socio-emotional learning and trauma-sensitive practices into ELT, the strategic incorporation of cultural elements within ESP classes, and the exploration of VR, Metaverse, and AI in the English language classroom.

Within the framework of the TESOL International Convention & Expo 2024, Associate Professor  Dr. Nataliia Lazebna (JMU) and Dr. Nataliia Marakhovska (Mariupol State University, Ukraine) held a four-hour workshop titled "Creating Culturally Responsive Inclusive EFL Classroom Environment through Visual Arts". Their participation was supported by the Regional English Language Office (RELO) of the US Embassy, Kyiw (Ukraine). The presenters shared their ideas and practices with the participants, comprising representatives from various educational institutions worldwide, regarding the effective utilization of visual arts to foster inclusivity in culturally sensitive learning environments and foreign language acquisition.

Inspired by the knowledge gained and accompanied by profound impressions and emotions, the JMU delegates engaged with colleagues, like-minded people and cooperation partners from Ukrainian universities, notably Prof. Tetyana Kozlova from Zaporizhia National University. Across the four days of the conference, productive exchanges were facilitated, enriching their professional and personal networks with new acquaintances from different countries and continents. In addition to a rich intellectually stimulating program, opportunities were seized to appreciate classical and contemporary art forms, alongside the vibrant street art culture and the natural splendor of Tampa.  

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