Jennifer Recio Lebedev
Originally certified to teach Russian as a foreign language by the state of Pennsylvania, I later discovered my true calling as an English language teacher while living and studying in Moscow, Russia. My undergraduate degree from Bryn Mawr College and graduate degree from Middlebury College are in Russian Studies, and I joke with my husband today that I did not major in Russian Studies, but simply took an intensive preparation course for marriage to a native Russian.
I began teaching English in 1996, first as a private instructor and later in the classroom. My teaching experience broadened when I returned to the U.S. in 2001, and subsequently I moved from the EFL classroom to the ESL classroom. At a private IEP in Boston, I joined the teaching staff and earned my TESL certificate. The small size of the school afforded many opportunities for professional growth. In time I coordinated and taught the teacher training program, established a literary magazine, and even wrote a 4-level series for the school’s writing curriculum. The many responsibilities I took on greatly aided my growth as a teacher, but by the end of 2005 I opted to leave my position as a classroom teacher and ESL program coordinator and move in another direction.
It was Pearson that built a bridge for me between my work in an IEP and my work as a materials writer. Vocabulary Power was a labor of love, completed after two years, and it was my debut on the international scene. Prior to this textbook series, I had written only small works for EFL students and teachers in Russia.
Not ready to return to traditional classroom teaching (two reasons: two children!), I experimented with online instruction in the late summer of 2007. I made a tentative entrance on the YouTube scene as JenniferESL, but soon became bolder and more committed as the response among viewers grew.
Here I am today, with vodcasts, podcasts, books, and plenty of ideas I am eager to share with the international community of English language learners and teachers. I hope you will continue to welcome my contributions.