Teaching in China: A Teacher’s Perspective

Teaching in China: A Teacher’s Perspective

Teaching in China: A Teacher’s Perspective

Numerous Westerners have come to East Asia in the last decade to teach during this “English Revolution,” and there are a various deep-rooted motivations that drive people to venture into the other side of the world.

For some, it’s to seek adventure, for others, it’s to have a rich cultural experience, and for me it was both of these things, along with the incitement of possible future business opportunities in thriving cities like Shanghai, Hangzhou, Hong Kong, and Taipei.

The climate surrounding graduation from my business school in America this past May was one of severe economic downturn and frozen financial systems, not to mention limited opportunities for recent graduates.  I took a class my last semester of college where a professor made the point, “How long do you expect your career to be?  Perhaps you will want to work for 30-40 years.

How much will the world change in that time?  What can you do to make yourself flexible and have longevity in your career?”

William Author Ward once said, “The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” So, in short, I decided to adjust the sails and pursue opportunities in China that would allow me to learn a valuable language, and also have the experience of living in what I believe is one of the most fascinating places in the world.

It is a rather bold move to leave behind your home, family, and friends, and head into the unknown.  I was mentally prepared, but felt it was critical to seek out a most-credible and professional company to guide me through this process.

Reach to Teach appealed to me because they are unique in that they do not operate on a commission basis, but rather by contracts, essentially partnering quality teachers with first-class schools.

They communicated with me regularly from the first phone interview in January and all the months between until my plane left in August, always providing clear expectations and quick to answer questions that I had.

My new life here has exceeded my expectations in practically every regard.  I have found the students to be an absolute delight, most of them are eager to learn English, and want very much to become friends with foreign teachers.

They like to come up with nicknames, give invitations to visit their hometowns, on occasion have given me some thoughtful gifts and once sang a song for me when I came into the class on Teacher’s Day.  My favorite things about this school are the warm-hearted students and the other foreign teachers who hail from other countries like Germany, Japan, and Korea.

There are also many sports facilities on this campus, and a fellow American teacher and I were invited to play on the school basketball team.  There is plenty of free time to enjoy, and I spend a large amount of it hanging out with Chinese friends, learning Mandarin, and also experimenting with cooking the new cuisine.

I am grateful towards Reach to Teach for the smooth process and partnering me with this terrific school.  If you are interested in coming to Asia, going through a professional and reputed organization will make all of the difference.  I highly recommend Reach to Teach.

-Wayne Watterson

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