Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Hello 2015, how are you today?

The word 'new' has been used a lot recently in the public domain. There is the new year with its new challenges and the new goal that we have all set for ourselves, with that new vibrant outlook of ours.

Well that is until around mid-January, when it all begins to wear off. I wonder how many of us have seen a new year's resolution right through to the end? I will put my hand up and admit that I have fell flat a few times with my plans for the new year. Things don't always pan out the way you want them to.

So for 2015 I want to work harder than last year. I'm not saying that I slacked off last year, but I think it is possible to push yourself a little more as you gain experience and (hopefully) some wisdom.

The new year also brings with it the realisation that time is still moving forward at an alarming rate, despite the constant wishes that it would slow down a little. This will be my ninth year teaching on YouTube and 12 years since I went to China (The place that truly opened my eyes to teaching).

During my four years in China I found myself in the position of being highly regarded by those around me. I really enjoyed teaching the classes and during my time there I built a reputation for myself that stood me in a positive light. My school used to take me to other districts to talk about teaching English to other teachers and of course I had lots of fun in the classrooms of each school I visited. For many of the pupils, I was the first overseas teacher they had met. Such was the excitement of my arrival, many of the students would be waving from the windows of their classrooms as I walked towards the school building. I would go from classroom to classroom giving impromptu lessons, which would last for about 45 to 50 minutes. In one visit I would do this about five or six times.

It is amazing how much experience you can gain in 4 years. I eventually became assistant to the president of the school I worked for and I became vice-dean of the local training centre, at which I also taught. I even appeared on television in China as the judge in an English speech contest. A job I did for three years. I also provided the voice for the listening exams organised by the local government, which got me invited to many meetings and dinners with the local leaders. They were keen to use me wherever possible and it was great publicity for my school too.

During my time in China I came across a few foreigners who were not suitable for teaching. These were transient travellers who used the job of teaching as a means of making some money to fund their expenses. They used forged documents to obtain work. I did on occasion have the duty of removing one or two of these characters from my school.

One in particular from Canada turned out to be an alcoholic, who kept disrupting the school with his drunken exploits. So just because a person says that they come from a certain country, does not mean that they will be a suitable person for the job in question. We would get people from the USA who would lie and trick their way into my school with fake business cards to secretly teach religion and in the process, upset/confuse my students by telling them that they would go to Hell if they did not follow Jesus. After discovering this I made sure that all visits were supervised. I am very protective of my students, whether they are the ones in my classroom or those learning on the internet.

Nobody...and I mean nobody makes my students cry!

My point here is that just because a person says that they are American or British or Canadian, it does not mean that they will be a good teacher...or for that matter a good person.

Ta-ta for now!


January 21st 2015


Speak English With Misterduncan said...

FOLLOW UP - If you are going to enter a school to preach religion then you should be open about it and not deceive others to achieve it. My objection is to the methods used to gain access to my students. (Misterduncan)

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