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The creators of this podcast, Anna Ciriani-Dean and Shélynn (Shey) Riel, met in New York City in 2018. This podcast was born of their shared passion for continuing professional development (and wine), and of a desire to expand the discussion about TESL/TEFL, international education, adult learning, and intercultural communication to a broader community of like-minded teachers. 


The aim of this podcast is to create a reflective listening experience for teachers of the English language and to build a community of educators around the world who unite behind a shared fervor for teaching and learning. From each episode, listeners will glean ideas, resources, anecdotes, and perspectives from other educators on teaching strategies they can apply in their own classroom---all packaged in a fun, conversational format. 


Fellow educators are invited to participate in a true community of practice that facilitates their growth professionally and personally. Listeners can submit anecdotes, questions, or areas of interest for the podcast on a rolling basis via email and on our various social media channels. Ultimately, this podcast is for listeners, by listeners!


We believe that community is what creates effective and empowered educators… join us in our mission to better serve our students, and our own intellectual curiosity!


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Anna holds an M.A. in Applied Linguistics & TESOL and has been working with learners of English and other languages since 2009.  In 2019-2020, Anna served in Armenia as an English Language Fellow with the U.S. Department of State, where she designed and taught undergraduate and graduate courses and offered teacher-training workshops for faculty members at various universities. Prior to her fellowship,she worked as an ESL instructor, assessment specialist and writing-center consultant at universities and educational companies around the Greater New York City Area.

Her goal as an educator is to empower learners by giving them agency in their learning process, helping them reach a confident level of language proficiency, and providing them with the tools they need to excel in their academic, professional, and personal lives. Her research interests include second language writing, task-based language teaching, language assessment, antiracist pedagogy, social media for learning, and educational technology.

In her spare time, Anna enjoys learning new languages (current endeavor: Hindi!), drinking tea, traveling, obsessing over her cat, and dancing to her heart’s content. She currently lives in Seattle, WA, USA.

Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @acd_esl and on LinkedIn at


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Shélynn (Shey for short) holds a Master of Education in TESOL, and has been working with English learners for over fifteen years, specializing in adult education. In 2017, Shélynn served in Argentina as an English Language Fellow with the U.S. Department of State, facilitating teacher training and professional development of pre-service and in-service teachers in universities and language institutions across the country. Prior to her time abroad, Shélynn held positions of leadership, specifically in curriculum development and administration, at universities and non-profits in her home state of Rhode Island.

As an educator, Shey believes in a holistic approach, striving to create balanced environments conducive to learning and reflection that are both challenging and nurturing of the whole being. Presently, her instruction is centered around augmenting student engagement in the digital classroom through the use of social media, action-oriented research, and student-led discussion; her current research interests include decolonial ethics in the language classroom, global citizenship education, intercultural communicative competence, and reflective professional learning. 


In her spare time, Shey enjoys being outdoors, practicing yoga, and studying languages. Shey is currently living the digital, nomadic teacher lifestyle out of her tiny home on wheels somewhere in North America.


Follow her adventures on Instagram @shey_teaches and connect on LinkedIn at

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