Posts tagged teaching English
A couple of months ago, I decided I needed to do some public relations for myself as a teacher. After having problems motivating the students in one of my classes, my Chinese friends suggested that I make myself seem like more of a friend to the students. I signed up for the most popular instant messenger client in China, QQ, specifically to communicate with students at my university. I also think this is a nice contact information alternative to my phone number, which many students I meet at campus events ask for.
Since February of 2009, three of my fellow graduates from the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication‘s public relations program have all begun teaching English in South Korea. All three students were interested in international cultures while in college and active in public relations on campus, specifically the Oregon Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. I felt the phenomenon was worth blogging about and interviewed them for this post.
BJ: I think my journalism degree has definitely helped in terms of being an effective English teacher. I am confident in my writing and comprehension of grammar, which were both fine-tuned in the J school. I also think that my leadership roles on campus contributed to my teaching abilities. Classrooms — especially kindergarten classrooms — are dynamic places that present unique and often challenging situations. A teacher has to be flexible yet maintain control and respect. It’s not easy, but my college experience prepared me in ways I never expected.
What do you want to do after your contract is up (if you know)?
I know I’ve been a bit hard to keep track of the past 15 months, frequently changing my jobs, internships, projects, and such. I thought the most recent change deserved a bit more attention because it’s the most drastic and also provides an opportunity to briefly reflect on my first year of work in China.
- High turnover in all industries
- Confusing and costly immigration regulations
- Shrinking economy, especially in fields I’m most qualified for
- Lots of startups, which doesn’t guarantee that one’s employer or clients are well-run or going to prosper in the future. (This is not specific to anyone I’ve worked with, just a general observation.)