Having taught English in Thailand for a couple of years, I can testify towards the cold sweat that descends when suddenly faced with a packed classroom of young, rowdy Thai kids. As soon as you get a grip of the situation, you will realise the huge rewards to be gained from teaching in a Thai primary school.
The use of authentic material in the ESL classroom is a well recognized best practice founded on the idea that students will be more interested and consequently learn more when presented with texts that are more relevant to their daily lives, more current in the treatment of the subject matter, and more closely aligned to the students’ interests and ambitions.
Free TESOL training: How to Use Authentic Material in Beginner Classrooms
Free TESOL training: How to Supplement the Textbook with Authentic Material
Sonia writes her last post about her wonderful TESOL experience in South Korea and shares a couple of things that you probably wouldn’t know until you got there. Enjoy!
You should know about the yellow dust season, particularly if you have allergies. It comes between spring and summer, and it’s exactly what it sounds like- a thin layer of yellow dust coats everything outside. Some people say it’s pollution from eastern Chinese industry, others say it’s spring pollen. During this season, weather reports will include the yellow dust predictions for the day, and on high index days you’ll see a lot of people wearing surgical masks outside. Yes, sometimes people really do wear surgical masks around all day long. Sometimes it’s for yellow dust, but the rest of the year it’s because the person wearing it has a cold and is being polite by keeping the germs to themselves as much as possible with that mask.
TESOL jobs in Saudi Arabia are generally excellent. School buildings are usually rather modern, and are most often well-maintained. (Pictured here is a wonderful open-air courtyard, contained within a classroom building at one Saudi college.) Rooms are generally swept out on a daily basis; this is actually a necessity because fine desert dust can blow in overnight through a less-than-tightly-sealed window.
My experiences as a Canadian living and working in China are different from most: I am a Canadian of Chinese descent – I LOOK Chinese, but I behave like a Canadian. This duality was advantageous at times, but it has also been the source of immense grief and frustration. The perspective from which I write this blog series on teaching in China will be from a Chinese-Canadian perspective, but I will try to include perspectives from the typical (i.e. Caucasian) foreigner whenever possible.