Why I Love Teaching at Molloy College
Molloy College is a home away from home for me. The moment I stepped foot at the college, it embraced me with open arms. The Molloy community is a family that supports and cares for its members. It is friendly and understanding and committed to the Dominican ideals of truth, academic excellence, and openness to diverse views. The faculty is dedicated to preparing well-rounded individuals who embody the Dominican ideals and possess the necessary knowledge, skills and dispositions to be successful.
My academic research interests include literacy development, diversity, standards and assessment and teacher education.
I have presented extensively in the areas of assessment, teaching diverse students, literacy and teacher education at international, national and local conferences and meetings which include the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), International Reading Association (IRA), American Educational Research Association (AERA), American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), New York State TESOL, and the New York State English Council (NYSEC).
What I am working on
Academically, I am working on several research projects, publications, and presentations. A book I wrote with Dr. Maureen Connolly - Getting to the Core of English Language Arts, Grades 6-12: How to Meet the Common Core State Standards with Lessons from the Classroom (Corwin Press) - was released in April 2012. The book provides an overview of the state standards in ELA as well as adaptable, exemplar lesson plans that help teachers in grades 6 - 12 navigate the most efficient route to creating standards-based lessons that optimize student learning. A second book tentatively titled, Getting to the Core of Literacy in the Content Areas, Grades 6-12: How to Meet the Common Core State Standards with Lessons from the Classroom, is currently being edited and will come out in the beginning of 2013. Local, national, and international presentations on the content of the two books are ongoing. In terms of service, I am serving on several professional organizations that include the New York State English Council, New York State TESOL (VP College), New York State TESOL (Long Island Region Chair), the ELA Advisory Board at Molloy College (Chair and Coordinator of ELA Summer Institutes), and the Long Island Professional Committee on ESOL Education (Conference Co-Organizer).
As a teacher educator and researcher, I strive to examine and apply the best teaching practices to ensure that my teacher candidates achieve success. My belief is that in order for my teacher candidates to be successful in the classroom they need to have a strong foundation in content and pedagogy. It is my role to teach both subject matter as well as pedagogical skills, including effective instructional strategies and techniques. I also want my students to have a strong theoretical foundation that will inform their practice.
As an educator, I strive to foster critical skills in students as well as create a classroom culture that focuses on collaboration and reflective practice. Teacher candidates critique and examine texts and practices, individually as well as collaboratively, to form their own viewpoints about the field of education. Through course assignments, they reflect on their own practice in order to improve it. Teacher candidates also acquire a vast repertoire of instructional approaches and techniques that they can choose from depending on the context in order to meet their own students' needs. They learn how to consider local contexts and particular circumstances when planning instruction; the instruction needs to be individualized, tailor-made for each individual student.
In order to prepare effective teachers, it is important that I act as an outstanding role model to my students. My actual practice, whatever I do in the classroom, is conscious and deliberate in order to provide students with a model of how they ought to be teaching, what some educators call, "the hidden curriculum." I believe my passion for teaching is apparent from my lessons. I care for all my students and want to see them succeed. I exhibit hard work and professionalism, values that I strongly believe in and expect my students to also demonstrate. I believe that teaching is fascinating because it is a life-long process, a never-ending journey of discovery and learning. It is fluid and always changing depending on factors that include students, classrooms, environments, policies and so forth. I want to prepare my teacher candidates to be effective educators who can teach all students in all different contexts.
- Ph.D. in Education, University of Pennsylvania (1996-2001)
- M.S. in TESOL, University of Pennsylvania (1996-2001)
- M.A. in English Education, Teacher's College, Columbia University (1995-1996)
- B.A. in English and American Literature/Psychology, New York University (1991-1995)
Menexas (Giouroukakis), V. (2001). The impact of the revised New York State Regents Examination in English on instructional practice. (Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pennsylvania) Dissertation Abstracts International, DAI-62-02A, p. 239.
Teaching, like parenting, is the most challenging, yet fulfilling profession. I am a mother of three children who are all different and whom I love all the same. I also consider my students to be my children, no matter how old or different they are, whether they are my former high school students or current graduate students. If you are knowledgeable and passionate about your subject and truly willing to find successful ways to reach all learners, then teaching may be for you. In this technological, fast-paced, diverse world that we live in and with the increasing demands and expectations placed on students to be critical thinkers, problem solvers, and college and career ready, schools need competent teachers who can prepare students to succeed in college, the workforce, and in life.
- 2010 Educator of Excellence awarded by the New York State English Council
Present Community Involvement and Service
- Chair, English Language Arts Education Advisory Board at Molloy College
The mission of the Board is twofold: to serve in an advisory capacity to make the services provided by the higher education programs congruent with the needs of K-12 ELA; and to enhance the academic and professional development of K-12 ELA educators by offering ELA programs.
- Coordinator, English Language Arts Education Programs at Molloy College
- Vice President of College (as of October 2011), Executive Board Member, New York State English Council (NYSEC)
- Chair, New York State TESOL (NYSTESOL) Long Island Region
- Member, Long Island Professional Committee on ESOL Education
- Co-Organizer, Long Island English to Speakers of Other Languages Conference (LIESOL)
- Vice President of Programs and Planning, Phi Delta Kappa
Service to the wider Community
- Presenter and Staff Developer, Long Island School Districts
- Penn Alumni Network Mentor
- Long Island Science and Engineering Fair Judge
- St. Agnes School, Reader's Day
- Former high school English teacher, NYC public schools
- Former ESL teacher of adolescents and adults
- New York State Certificate in School Administration and Supervision
- New York State Permanent Certification for the Teaching of English at the Secondary Level New York City License for the Teaching of English in Junior High Schools
- New York City License for the Teaching of English in High Schools
- New York State Professional Certification for the Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
- The Delta Kappa Gamma Society International (DKG)
- Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD)
- National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)
- International Reading Association (IRA)
- New York State English Council (NYSEC)
- Long Island Language Arts Council (LILAC)
- Teachers of English Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
- New York State Teachers of English Speakers of Other Languages (NYSTESOL)
- The Hellenic American Educators Association
- Kappa Delta Pi (KDP)
- Hellenic Professional Women's Association
- Fluent in Greek
- Conversational French
Editorial Review Board, TESOL Journal.
Editorial Review Board, Excelsior: Leadership in Teaching and Learning, a publication of NYACTE.
Giouroukakis, V., & Connolly, M. (2012). Getting to the core of English Language Arts, grades 6-12: How to meet the common core state standards with lessons from the classroom. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.
Giouroukakis, V., Dove, M., & Honigsfeld, A. (2012). From co-teaching partnership to mentoring: Innovative ways to build teacher capacity. In A. Honigsfeld, & A. Cohan (Eds.). Breaking the Mold of Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students: Innovative and Successful Practices for the 21st Century (pp. 265-274). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
Connolly, M., & Giouroukakis, V. (2012, July). Cyberbullying: Taking control through research-based letter writing. The English Journal, a publication of the National Council of Teachers of English, 101(6), 70-74.
Cohan, A., Nenchin, J., Giouroukakis, V., & Honigsfeld, A. (2012). Collaboratively partnering schools and colleges: A classroom-based staff development model. Idiom,41(4), 29-31.
Giouroukakis, V. (2012, Spring). College ready or not! How the K-12-college differentiated instruction mismatch fails our students. NYSEC News. The New York State English Council.
Giouroukakis, V., Cohan, A., Nenchin, J., & Honigsfeld, A. (2011, June). A second set of eyes and ears: Obervation protocol boosts skills for teachers of ELL students. Learning Forward, 32(3), 60-63.
Giouroukakis, V., & Honigsfeld, A. (2011). The ABC's of culturally and linguistically responsive practices. Language Magazine. Available at http://languagemagazine.com/?page_id=2114#comments.
Connolly, E., & Giouroukakis, V. (2011). Voices from the field: Technology and multimodal learning in a teacher education course. The English Record, 61(1), 2-11.
Giouroukakis, V., & Honigsfeld. (2010). High-stakes testing and English language learners: Using alternative instructional literacy strategies in the high school English classroom. TESOL Journal, 4(1), 470-499.
Natsiopoulou, E., & Giouroukakis, V. (2010, April). When teachers run the school. Educational Leadership online, 67(7). Retrieved from http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/apr10/vol67/num07/When-Teachers-Run-the-School.aspx
Giouroukakis, V., Honigsfeld, A., & Garfinkel, J. (2010). Multicultural literature in middle school: Developing students' self- and cross- cultural understanding. Journal of Multiculturalism in Education, 6(1). Available at http://www.multiculturaljournal.com/volumes/6/1/
Giouroukakis, V., & Rauch, A. (2010). Using discrepant events to teach science to ELLs. Educators' Voice, Volume III, NYSUT's Journal of Best Practices in Education, 34-39.
Giouroukakis, V. (2009, Fall/Winter). Voices from the field: Teacher candidates struggle to "read" literacy strategies for teaching adolescent literacy. Excelsior: Leadership in Teaching and Learning, a publication of NYACTE, 32-49.
Honigsfeld, A., Giouroukakis, V., Cohan, A. & Walsh, M. (2009). Ten ways to incorporate technology into a TESOL teacher preparation program. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 9(2), 208-221. Available at: http://www.citejournal.org/vol9/iss2/currentpractice/article1.cfm