LAUREN KAUSHANSKY

Lecturer
Department of History

Lauren Kaushansky comes to Stony Brook University with a wide range of educational experiences, both in and out of the classroom. She received her Bachelors degree from UCLA and went on to earn her Masters degree in Education from Antioch University, Seattle, Washington. Lauren continued to fuel her educational skills by achieving an endorsement in English from the University of Washington. Lauren has taught for over two decades in California and Washington, including classes in U.S. History, World History, English, Writing and Drama. A transplant from the West Coast, Lauren's most recent teaching stint in La Jolla, California, produced several wonderful achievements: One of four finalists for "Educator of the Year" (2010), The Faculty Award for Mentoring which allowed her to travel and write poetry (2005 – 2006), and a teaching enrichment grant allowing her to visit Africa to view schools and hospitals and integrate global materials into her classroom. Her thesis on how writers have changed the way Americans think was presented at a NCTE conference in Portland, Oregon in collaboration with a small group of students portraying some of the infamous writers.

As a Social Studies teacher, "Mrs. K" was known for her commitment to global and political studies involving such units as the Model UN and Mock Trials. Her love of theatre allows her to infuse the classroom with role plays, challenging students to experience multiple perspectives on any given issue. While teaching and working on the Washington State standards for Social Studies, Lauren rediscovered her fondness for Ben Franklin and developed an on going curriculum devoted to his "Junto Club." An essay entitled, "Reviving Ben Franklin's Junto Club" was published by Democracy and Education: The Magazine for Classroom Teachers. Along with her love of Social Studies, Lauren has penned and had published over thirty poems and has written and directed numerous plays. Her passion for theatre has allowed her to work with a variety of different communities including the homeless, Cambodian children exploring their history and heritage, deaf middle school students, secondary students performing Shakespeare in the Park as well as public and private school students at all levels including college.

Over the last five years Ms. Kaushansky has been involved in the “Living Book Project” with her community collaborator, Dr. Liz Kelso. Together they have created and produced three annual Living Book Project Events in which each involved over 200 high school students, 20 University faculty, graduate students and pre service teachers. The Living Book Project experience is documented both in a short film and a published article in the English Journal, (Vol. 103, No. 3, January 2014). Currently, Ms. Kaushansky’s teaches at Stony Brook University, "Education: Theory and Practice.” as well as yearly freshman seminars. She is involved in placing TESOL student teachers in local school districts as well as being a guest artist in the Freedom School Program and at the Book Read yearly event in the Three Village School District. Ms. Kaushansky also collaborated with the Ward Melville Heritage Organization to create and enrich their historic distance learning course and their curriculum for the Thompson Heritage House Museum. She has also collaborated with the Stony Brook’s Medical School to create films and plays for medical students for historical and diagnostic learning. Her most recent collaborations involved working with Dr. Annette Shideler on writing, directing and producing short videos on teaching diversity and English Language Learners (ELLs) for students seeking teacher certifications.