TEACHING ENGLISH AS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE: A CASE STUDY FROM POLAND

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JAROSLAW R. ROMANIUK
KRISTIN MILLER
MARY KAY PIESKI
TERESA G. WOJCIK
KATHLEEN J. FARKAS

Abstract

This article presents a detailed history of the development of a particular immersion program to teach English to young Polish students. The program draws support from two organizations, the Kościuszko Foundation and the Polish Scouting Organization. Kościuszko Foundation is dedicated to strengthening the ties between the United States and Poland as well as to increase knowledge of Poland’s history and culture in the United States. The cooperation of these two organizations developed an experience of immersion in language and cultural exchange. Both the teachers and the students in this program benefited from the opportunity to engage in a number of different types of language activities and cultural events through a summer camp experience. This program is, of course, unique, but the elements of context, culture and immersion could be used in other programs to develop English skills and knowledge in the context American culture.

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How to Cite
ROMANIUK, J. R., MILLER, K., PIESKI, M. K., WOJCIK, T. G., & FARKAS, K. J. (2020). TEACHING ENGLISH AS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE: A CASE STUDY FROM POLAND. Society Register, 4(4), 167-182. https://doi.org/10.14746/sr.2020.4.4.08
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Articles
Author Biographies

JAROSLAW R. ROMANIUK, Case Western Reserve University

J. Richard Romaniuk, PhD, LISW-S, LICDC, is a researcher and educator. Currently he works as a fulltime lecturer at the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. From 2004 to 2015 he worked as a social worker at the Louis Stokes Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center. He also worked in the School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University as a neuroscientist. His experience at the VA has led him to participate in national VA committees and the National Association of Social Workers in Ohio. He was also involved locally, as a Board member of The Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) Board of Cuyahoga County (2010-2017).

KRISTIN MILLER, Oberlin City Schools

Kristin B. Miller, M.L.I.S., Indiana University. Kristin is currently the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme Coordinator for Oberlin City Schools where she works with teachers to incorporate international-mindedness into the schools’ inquiry-based curriculum. Kristin has been involved with the Teaching English in Poland Program since 2016. In the past she has served as American Staff Leader for the Załęcze camp and she is currently serving as American Staff Leader for its first-ever virtual summer program which aims to connect Polish students with American teachers online during the Covid 19 pandemic. Kristin is also working with the staff of the Kosciuszko Foundation Poland to produce a series of webinars for Polish staff members in the TEIP program.

MARY KAY PIESKI, Kent State University

Mary Kay Pieski , Ph.D. is a recently retired music teacher and served as the orchestra director for the Kent City Public School System. She received an undergraduate degree in Music Education from Marywood University in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Dr. Pieski holds a Master of Music Education Degree in Piano Pedagogy and a Ph.D. in Cultural Foundations of Education from Kent State University. Dr. Pieski has been actively involved in programs that teach English, American Culture and the Arts to children all across Poland for over 25 years. This led her to co-found Eagle-Orzeł Educational and Cultural Exchange, Inc with Dr. Teresa Wojcik, which continues to connect Americans and Poles through the Language and Arts. Dr. Pieski is also actively involved in several Polish organizations, professional music associations, and serves in an executive capacity of the Gamma Delta Chapter of the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International. Dr. Pieski is a member of the Orlando Choral Society, a community choir in Winter Garden Florida.

TERESA G. WOJCIK, Villanova University

Teresa G. Wojcik, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Education in the Department of Education and Counseling at Villanova University. She serves as the director of the graduate program in teacher certification. Dr. Wojcik enjoys working with pre-service and in-service educators and teaches courses in the philosophy of education, methods of teaching, and comparative education. Her research interests include the historical and philosophical foundations of education, Social Studies curriculum, and the preparation of globally competent educators. A former Fulbright scholar in Poland, Dr. Wojcik has a particular interest in studying the history of education in Poland. She has published in a variety of journals including Curriculum Inquiry, Educational Studies, The Social Studies, The Polish Review, and Problemy Wczesnej Edukacji. Dr. Wojcik is co-founder and co-president of the Eagle-Orzel Educational and Cultural Exchange, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to creating, facilitating, and supporting cross-cultural exchanges between and among American and Polish teachers, artists, and students.

KATHLEEN J. FARKAS, Case Western Reserve University

Kathleen J. Farkas, Ph.D. LISW-Supv. is an Associate Professor of Social Work at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio USA. She has extensive clinical and research experience in the areas of mental health and addictions assessment and treatment. Dr. Farkas a long time interest in substance use issues among older adults and women and her work has focused on addictions and mental health issues among those incarcerated in jails and prisons. Recently she has been involved in research, teaching and service efforts using animal assisted interventions in mental health and addictions. She is the chairperson of the Mandel School’s direct practice faculty as well as the specialization faculty for substance use disorders and recovery.

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