My experience in China so far has been one of the best and also one of the most interesting things that I have done. Chinese hospitality is second to none, in the school where I am currently teaching we live in a building with other teaching staff. We have home-made food brought to us, we get invited to their homes and have currently just came back from Sanming (South China) which is a teacher’s home around 4 hours drive away from where we live.
The school that I work in is a High school and the age range I work with is around 16-17 year olds. Let me tell you, they are the brightest students that I have ever met: Keen and willing to learn anything you put in front of them! A true inspiration to my teaching practice here. They love hearing about English traditions and customs also.
At the school the other intern and I partake in an English corner every Friday afternoon. Here, the students from every year get a chance to come and speak to us and discuss anything that they wish. It is a great incentive for the students, as the other intern and I are the first English speaking teachers they have ever had. So, as you can imagine we are quite a novelty at the moment! Recently, I was the judge for my Grade at a speaking competition which seen all the year compete against each other and we had to pick the winners. The year also put on a talent show and I was asked to be in the play Aladdin as the shopkeeper which, I greatly accepted! (I have included pictures from both my experiences).
The best piece of advice that I can share with you is to be prepared for anything! An example of this is they will change your class times occasionally, sometimes even up to 5 minutes before you due to start, if you need to speak to your teachers be warned they might not get back to you straight away and never interrupt siesta time which is a good bonus for you as well every day (even during school time!) So, be prepared to leave your control freak mind home and embrace Chinese culture with your arms stretched out wide.