Monday, December 29, 2008

Education in the News: UK students to mentor each other

The UK government is pumping money into a program to train pupils to mentor each other. Jessica Shepherd wrote in the Guardian Newspaper:

"English schools will receive almost three-quarters of a million pounds over the next two years to train their pupils to listen to one another's problems.

Pupils in secondary schools and colleges will be taught to help classmates who struggle to form friendships or find it hard to express themselves.

Ministers hope the "peer mentors" will defuse arguments through discussion, reduce bullying, improve behaviour and raise attainment."

To read the full article, please click here.

What do you think? Can secondary school students really help each other or is this just another big ol' waste of education funding? Have you seen anything like this mentoring program elsewhere? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Stumble Upon, Interactive Whiteboards & You Tube - How to Use Technology in Any Classroom



Do you know about Stumble Upon yet? It's a website you can use to "stumble" through the web looking for sites that match your interests. So, for Classroom Canada, I state that I am most interested in education, and therefore teaching, teachers, teaching in London, England, schools, and so on. I then click on the stumble button on my tool bar and quickly flick through websites, videos, images and blogs & either give a thumbs up or a thumbs down.

Many of the videos I've added to this blog were found through using Stumble Upon. If you want, you can see which websites & videos I've enjoyed by clicking on this link. Some are just silly, and some are really useful.

I found the above video in stumble upon this morning. I decided to share it with you for 2 reasons:

1. I wanted to tell you about Stumble Upon since it makes 10 minutes of random web searching much more interesting.

2. I wanted to tell you how easy it is to use Interactive Whiteboards in London schools. Let's say you have to teach your students anatomy, whether it be grade 1 or grade 11. A silly video like the one above can be found through using stumble upon, or teacher tube or you tube. You start the lesson with the video on the IWB, and bam. Your students are hooked. It's so easy! Then, you can carry on with your lesson with a class that is more engaged. Of course, you will need to have them using more hands-on tools as well, but this type of video is a fabulous lesson starter anyway.

Like this post? You might also like:
Mind Maps & Interactive Whiteboards
My Top 14 Favourite Movies Set in London
Teaching Math in London Schools
52 Reasons to Teach in London, England

One last thing: The statistics for this little blog are outstanding! Since I first started writing in August 2008, this blog has had: 6496 page views, 3410 unique visitors, 2642 of those were first time visitors & 768 regular returning visitors.





So here's my question for you dear reader. How can I make this blog more welcoming to you to leave comments? I'd like there to be more discussion & networking in the comments, but need your help. Any suggestions or advice for me? I'd love to hear it! Please let me know below & thanks so much for your continued support & encouragement.

Monday, December 22, 2008

100th Post: 100 ways to Say "Well Done!" to Students

This is our 100th blog post. Wow. When I started this little blog in August 2008, I had no idea if I could actually have enough to say about teaching in London to keep up with a blog. Turns out I do. Well how 'bout that?

So to celebrate, I thought I'd include
100 Ways to Say Well Done to Students. There are plenty of these lists out there on the web. Most are 50 ways, and tend to be fairly American in their statements (there's nothing wrong with that, but when teaching in the UK you should try to use more British terms). I found this handy list of 90 ways on a Surrey UK website, so I wanted to share it with you & add 10 more of my own.

Primary Schools

Social Rewards
  1. verbal praise, stating what the pupil has done that was good, and why
  2. making eye contact with a smile, wink, or nod of the head
  3. putting a hand on the pupil's shoulder, ruffling the hair, or pat on the back (NB some children do not like physical contact)
  4. quick hug (where age or maturity appropriate for a teacher to do this)
  5. handshake: soul shake (“Give me five”); finger handshake (hook one finger with one of the pupil's); group handshake
  6. calling the pupil's parents to tell them something positive
  7. telling another pupil something positive about the pupil (so that the pupil can hear)
  8. telling the headteacher something positive about the pupil (so that the pupil can hear)
  9. asking the pupil to show other pupils how to do something s/he can do well
  10. eating with the pupil at lunchtime
  11. going out at playtime with the pupil
  12. working with the pupil
  13. playing a game with the pupil
  14. letting the pupil spend time with the caretaker, school secretary, or headteacher
Special Responsibilities
  1. student chooses the next activity for the class
  2. student chooses a game for the class to play
  3. student feeds the class pet
  4. student waters the class or headteacher's or secretary's plants
  5. student reads to the class or to a younger class
  6. student controlls the video
  7. student gets to be the door monitor for the day
  8. student gets to pass out and collect in special equipment
  9. student gets to be a team captain and choose a team
  10. student gets to give the questions in a class test
  11. student gets to be the headteacher's or secretary's special assistant for half a morning
  12. student gets to put up a display with an adult or on their own
  13. student gets to choose the next book for story time;
  14. student gets to choose the next song to sing
  15. student can take the class pet home for the weekend
  16. student can take a note or message to other teachers in the school
  17. student takes a note or the register (aka attendance) to the office
  18. student can open or close the curtains
  19. student can be the book monitor
  20. student can use some special equipment not normally available for pupil use. . .
  21. student can be assistant referee in a game
  22. student can blow the whistle at playtime
  23. student can do something only teachers or older pupils are usually allowed to do. . .
Special Activities
  1. student can sit in the teacher's chair
  2. student can have extra free time; free choice activity
  3. student can play with puzzles
  4. student can be the leader of the line
  5. student can paint, draw or model
  6. student can watch a film or television programme
  7. student can play with a ‘bumper fun book’ type puzzle and activity sheets
  8. student can have extra playtime
  9. student can have extra P.E.
  10. teacher reads to the class a story the pupil has written
  11. student can have extra time to read a book to him/herself
  12. student can write on the blackboard
  13. student can wash equipment or clean
  14. students can play team games within the classroom
  15. student can choose the place to work at
  16. student can play the piano, keyboard or other instrument
  17. student can choose to not wear uniform for a day
  18. student can put head down and resting for 10 minutes
Tangible Rewards
  1. achievement award
  2. special badge
  3. special headband
  4. special note to headteacher
  5. name on roll of honour in class or in the hall
  6. sticker
  7. comment on the pupil's work
  8. item of school equipment (eg pencil case)
  9. sweets, biscuits or cake
  10. nuts, crisps (aka chips), etc
  11. helping to plan a party
  12. going to the library
  13. playing board games
  14. being the last in the line
  15. using modelling clay
  16. using a tape recorder
  17. colouring in pattern sheets (eg Altair patterns)
  18. staying in at playtime
  19. extra time on the computer
  20. choosing a book to read from the ‘special’ library section
  21. using a stopwatch
  22. cleaning the blackboard
  23. sharpening the pencils
  24. enacting a play
  25. being the chair for the class debate
  26. going on a field trip or excursion out of school
  27. extra time on a favourite subject
  28. tidying up a special area
  29. certificate
  30. special sash
  31. special armband
  32. special note to parents
  33. name on special poster
  34. stamp on work or on hand
  35. toy or game
  36. book, comic, magazine
  37. drink
  38. fruit
My 10 Ways
  1. Have the students who went above & beyond in an assignment get to stay in and have Hot Chocolate with the teacher. I did this for a Mind Map project and 5 of my year 6 students stayed in. They loved it!
  2. Have a friendly chat with the student about one of their favourite interests to show you really are impressed with their work & can now talk about other things. I had a student who had carrier pigeons at home so when he did well, I'd ask him to tell me more ab0ut them.
  3. Have a special hat that the student can wear during story time, while they help you turn the pages. I had a great big gold sparkly hat one student could wear during our Roald Dahl story time. Boys & girls loved it.
  4. Hold a raffle, and students can earn raffle tickets. The grand prizes can be special pencils, stickers, or anything that students love.
  5. Send the student to one of the other teachers to show off their work. Make sure you do this when you know the other teacher won't mind the interruption.
  6. Have a giant puzzle in the classroom that the whole class is working on, and when they've done a great job at their work they can work on the puzzle. I did this with a London puzzle that the students loved to work on. They could find their neighbourhood & landmarks they knew. It worked like a charm!
  7. Say "well done" in their language.
  8. Have the student help you with the register (attendance sheet).
  9. Each morning, say "good morning" in a different language. Have the student choose the language for one day.
  10. Do a "Star of the Week" as many primary schools do. Celebrate that student's success in their behaviour or academic achievements.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Teaching in London, England: Our 10 Most Popular Blog Posts

So you want to teach in London, England but don't know where to start. So many teaching agencies, so much research to do right? Look no further!

Here are the 10 Most Popular Blog Posts about teaching in London, England:

1. 52 Reasons to Teach in London, England.

2. 10 Myths about Teaching in London, England.

3. Pros & Cons to Teaching in London, England.

4. Money, Money Money: How to Open a UK Bank Account & Send Money to Canada

5. Behaviour Management in the Toughest Class

6. How to Find an Apartment in London

7. A Funny Teaching Story & Interview with an OISE Teacher in London

8. American Teacher Recruitment for London, England

9. Cheap Flights to London, England and How to Book a Hostel

10. Typical Interview Questions for Teaching in London, England

For books, start with the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians.
Check out the interviews with our teachers & recruiters on the right hand side of this page and sign up for our newsletters here.

FYI: Classroom Canada is heading out on the road again. We're traveling to Ontario, Quebec and BC to meet with new & experienced teachers. If you'd like to meet us in person, please see this post to see if we're coming to a town near you.

Apply for teaching jobs that start in April & May 2009 or September 2009 in January and February.

Happy holidays everyone!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Teaching in London, England - The Queen's Christmas Video



Every year, the Queen of England has a Christmas video. Most of our teachers travel at Christmas so they miss this event, but with You tube & Blogging you can watch it here. This is last year's address, but I will be sure to post her 2008 video once it's up on You Tube.

I emailed our BC teachers to ask if they'd be home for Christmas this year and not one of them is! I am so impressed with their travels. They are off to Turkey, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Scotland and Ireland instead. So, while Vancouver Island is covered in a blanket of snow our teachers in London are off traveling Europe and enjoying the holidays they deserve.

If you want to see where you could travel while teaching in London, check out this post about Flights to England & How to Book Cheap Hostels.

Be sure to get your copy of the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians. I know a few of our readers purchased the guide as a stocking stuffer. What a brilliant idea!
Sign up for our newsletters here.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Teaching in London, England with Interactive Whiteboards (aka Smart Boards)


Picture this. It's Monday morning and you want your students to feel inspired to write a short story.

You could start with your own short story & read aloud to the students. You could read them a story by Robert Munsch or Roald Dahl. You could write a half completed sentence on the board & tell the students to finish it. You could show them interesting photos to get their creative juices flowing.

All of these ideas are fine, but ...

Well, let's face it. Students want more than a flat picture to look at, or a story read to them aloud.

In London, the vast majority of classrooms from year 1 all the way through to A Levels have Interactive Whiteboards (IWBs), which you may know as Smart Boards. This technology will change your teaching & make it much more interactive for the students. The VAK (Visual, Auditory and Kinestetic) approach is made much easier with the use of the technology.

Here's a set of sample Story Starts compiled by Teachers TV. In the video, you'll see how to use the IWB to inspire your students in their writing. Check it out, watch it, use it & spread the word.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

One Laptop Per Child



I wrote a little while ago about Support for Non-Profits and Education Around the World, and have since learned about this One Laptop Per Child program. I will be getting involved in this in some capacity and would love your thoughts and ideas.

One reason our teachers really enjoy teaching in London is that the use of technology is outstanding. Almost every classroom has an interactive white board (which you may know as a Smart Board). Students grow up logged on, tapped in and clued in. You can learn more about Smart Board resources if you join this the SmartBoard Lesson podcast group on facebook.

So in the spirit of giving back, I think it's only right that we help promote One Laptop Per Child as well. What do you think? Do you know any more about this program that I should be aware of before I take the plunge and sign a cheque? I prefer to support organizations that I know well, so any feedback you have for me will be great. Thanks!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Teaching Jobs in London, England


Teaching with Bailey - Chatty Students from Efl Classroom on Vimeo.

The above video will help teachers considering the move to teaching in the UK. What better way to learn what it's really like than to watch it on television?

In the above video you will watch former teacher & now behaviour consultant, John Bayley. He has a regular spot on Teachers TV with a program called "Teaching with Bayley" - I recommend that you watch as many of these as you can before you look at specific teaching jobs in London. Bayley is considered an "outstanding" teacher (by the government agency, Ofsted) and is brilliant to watch in action.

To read more about Bayley, please see this website.

If you do want to know more about teaching jobs now, please read this post. Also, get your copy of the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians by yours truly.

Here's an email I just received from one of the readers of the guide:
"I just finished reading the guide, thank you so much! It was extremely enjoyable to read and clearly answered many, if not all, of my questions (from how the British school system works to what to bring to London).

It
has definitely helped to solidify my decision to move to London and has got me very excited! My biggest question and concern was whether to apply with an agency or not. I've done a lot of research online and through talking with friends who have gone to Europe to teach but there's not a lot of clear information out there about agencies and their pros and cons, but you've totally convinced me!

Once school and work have calmed down a bit during the Christmas
holidays you can expect to receive my cover letter and resume!

Thanks again,
Amie"
Wow - Thanks Amie! I really appreciate your feedback & am so pleased to read your thoughts on the guide.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

University Job Fairs 2009 - Update

Classroom Canada is leaving the sunny shores of Victoria, BC to venture east and meet the teachers in Ontario and Quebec. New & experienced teachers should apply now for jobs starting in April/May 2009 and September 2009.



Here are the dates & locations of the job fairs we will be attending:

  • University of Toronto (OISE): December 12, 2008
  • University of Victoria (for a presentation): December 16th, 2008
  • York University: January 6th (book launch) and January 8, 2009 (job fair) - CANCELED DUE TO STRIKE ON CAMPUS
  • Brock University: January 9, 2009
  • Queens University: January 13, 2009
  • Western University: January 16, 2009
  • Trent University: January 17, 2009
  • UBC: January 23rd, 2009
  • Nipissing University: January 29th (book launch) and January 30, 2009 (job fair)
  • McGill University: February 2, 2009
  • Concordia University: February 4, 2009
  • University of Ottawa: February 6, 2009
  • University of Victoria: March 5 & 6, 2009
You should also buy the ebook, Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians (the American edition will be out soon). To apply, please click here.

If you don't see your city or university on the list, don't fret! Apply anyway. Canada is just so big! It's hard for us to go to every city, but that won't stop us from interviewing you on the phone.

Here's a video I thought you might find funny. It's Student Rush Hour at Cambridge, in the UK. It's shown here at 4 times the speed. Check out all those bikes!

Monday, December 8, 2008

York Teachers Should Apply Now - York Job Fair Cancelled

I just received an email to say that the York Education Job Fair has been canceled due to a strike on campus. York University Teachers should apply to teaching jobs with Classroom Canada now if they want to be interviewed in person.

I had planned to be at York on the 8th of January to meet the new teachers & discuss teaching in London, but we'll have to find another way. I'm at OISE (U of T) this Friday (December 12th) and will be conducting interviews all day Saturday in Toronto. Most of those interview spots have been taken, but if you apply now, I might be able to fit you in or interview you Sunday morning.

York may reschedule the job fair for the end of January or early February, but to be safe you should still just apply now. I have a few brilliant teachers from York who are teaching in London with us now, so it really is a shame that the strike is lasting this long. To read an interview with a York teacher just click here.

We also planned a book launch at York for the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians for January 6th. This may have to be canceled as well. I'll keep you posted through this blog, so watch this space.

To see what other cities & universities we are visiting, please see this blog post. We've also decided to add 2 more universities: Trent (Jan. 12th) and Western (Jan. 16th). If you don't see your area on the list, please apply anyway.

Friday, December 5, 2008

How to Survive Your Worst Teaching Day


We've all had those days.

And if you haven't yet, be sure it's coming.

You've lost control of your class. Your students are going crazy in the classroom - fighting, throwing things, listening to not a single word you say. You feel like you've lost all authority.

What do you do?

It all comes down to attitude.

You can blame the school. You can blame the children. You can blame their "irresponsible parents". You can blame England, its educational policies, its backward class system. And you can even blame the Queen.

But none of your blaming will get you anywhere other than teacher burnout and possibly the end of your teaching career.

OR...

You could choose to take control of the one thing you do have control of: YOU.

You can tell yourself, "I can turn this around. I can get through this. I'm the one in charge. I am the grown-up here and this is my classroom." Then draw on everything you've learned in teachers college, in practicum, from other teachers, from this blog, the books you've read and your own common sense. And get control of yourself and your classroom.

You may not get through the lesson. You may not get through the objective. But you will get through the day and you will have earned your students' respect (maybe not much, but every bit makes a difference!)

It's all about T-Cup. Total Control Under Pressure. Make it your mantra. Your creed. You can't go wrong with T-Cup as your guide.

Then go home, have a bath, a glass of wine...whatever you do to relax. I went to the gym almost every day in my first year of teaching in a particularly challenging school. It was the only way I could get my frustrations out.

Sometimes you can vent to your other teacher friends. Use their support & words of advice. But to value your friendship and yourself, don't vent all the time!

My Australian flatmate & I had a rule in our home - for every negative statement we made about our day, we had to come up with 2 positives. At first, it was pretty tough. We both had our hands full, and needed to get all the negative thoughts out of our systems. But the positive thoughts helped us 100 times more.

One of my teachers writes the Canadian value of her daily rate on her hand. So, for example, if she earns 120 pounds/day, she would write $230 on her hand. She looks at her hand when she's having a particularly crummy moment in teaching. It calms her down, reminds her that she's doing great & earning good money. Then she thinks about going to Paris on the weekend. Or maybe this weekend she'll go to Barcelona? Or how about Brussels? Not a bad life after all!

Do you have any advice that you can offer teachers? Please help us by leaving your comment below.

Like this post? You might also like:
How Will You Get the Meanest, Nastiest, & Rudest Kid in the Class to Listen to You?
1o Myths About Teaching in London
Pros & Cons to Teaching in London
Rules, Rules & More Rules
Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians

Check out this Teachers TV Video as well:


Teaching with Bailey - Class control Ecoutez! from Efl Classroom on Vimeo.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Support for Non-Profits & Education Around the World

One of the reasons I started Classroom Canada is that I used to work in international development. While teaching in London, England I quickly discovered that the vast majority of teaching agencies that bring foreign teachers to the UK don't really focus on teachers as whole beings. They focus on getting us jobs (which frankly, is not that tough considering the massive shortage of teachers in the UK), and forget to focus on accommodations and community for the teachers.

So, with Classroom Canada I'm pleased to say that our teachers make the move to London feeling supported & part of a community of teachers. You can read some of their stories on the right hand side of this blog under the sub-heading Interviews with our Teachers.

To support international development & global education, I give money to a couple of charities that I believe fit in with Classroom Canada's goals. I thought you might like to hear about these organizations.

The first organization is Amnesty International, which I support on a monthly basis. To learn more about Amnesty, please click here.

The second organization I give to is the Katine project, which was started by the Guardian newspaper. Here's what they say:

"In October 2007, the Guardian and Observer embarked on a three-year project to support development work carried out by the African Medical and Research Foundation (Amref) and Farm-Africa in Katine, a rural sub-county of north-east Uganda.

...
But the Katine project is more than just a fundraising push. On our dedicated Katine website you will get the chance to find out how the money is spent, how development works (the successes and the failures) and how the lives of the sub-county's 25,000 inhabitants have changed."

What I like about the Katine website is that you can actually see the changes happening in this small community. It's an interactive website that really helps readers to understand the issues facing the village. If you can, please support this project by donating here.

When I went to Queen's University for my B.Ed, I received a grant to complete one of my teaching practicums in Bangladesh. I did this practicum with Volunteers for Peace, which involved helping a rural community to build latrines, assisting doctors with eye cataract surgery and health education in general. It was an incredible experience & helped my teaching immensely. I encourage all teachers to get some experience working in a variety of settings world-wide, as our classrooms are becoming more diverse. You will only be a better teacher for it.

While teaching in London, teachers have 13 weeks of holiday a year. You can complete projects like the one I did with VFP throughout Europe & Africa and live rent-free while giving back to the community. Check out the VFP website here. You can search by country or type of project. For example, there were 47 projects (called "workcamps") in England for 2008.

If you know of a good non-profit organization that you think we should support, please leave your comments below. I'll be happy to do some research & see what I can do to help.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A Funny Teaching Story & Interview with an OISE Teacher

Classroom Canada is hitting the road again! We're going to Toronto to meet with OISE teachers & interview teachers in the Toronto area on December 12th & 13th. Check out this post for more information about our Cross-Canada tour.


In honour of the OISE fair, we thought you might like to read this interview with Jessica, a graduate of the University of Toronto's OISE Bachelor of Education. Jessica taught in Toronto for a year before embarking on her adventure in teaching in London, England. She's an outstanding teacher so please read her advice & tips about teaching in the UK.

Here's a funny story from one of our teachers in London. Arlene writes this blog that she's agreed to share with you, dear readers. I laughed out loud, so hope you enjoy it as well.

"I had a lovely class of year fives on Wednesday outside of central London. They were really nice and well behaved. I have to say, though, I'm often amazed at some student's lack of knowledge about Canada. Each morning when I introduce myself I say that I'm from Canada and tell them how long it took me to get to London on an airplane and answer any questions they have about me or where I'm from.

Well, in this year 5 class (so, 10 year olds), after lunch the kids were working nicely on some writing when suddenly one boy puts up his hand. I figure he has a question about the work so I go over to help him. When I get to his table he puts his hand up to his ear (mimicking a phone) and looks puzzled as he asks,

"Miss, so did they call you in Canada this morning and tell you you had to come all the way to London to teach us?"

I honestly could not think of anything intelligent to say to that, so I just laughed. The TA started laughing, looked at her watch and said, "Well, you'd better getting going now, Miss, if you want to be home for dinner!"

Same kid, about twenty minutes later asks, "Miss, if we're good would you read us a story in 'Canadian'?"

After a brief explanation that 'Canadian' is not a language, and that we speak English in Canada just like in England, he then asks, "Well then Miss, could you read us a story with your accent on?"

My response: "Sure, I guess I can turn my accent 'on' for you guys... but only if you're really good for the rest of the afternoon."

Suffice it to say, we had story time and I read Robert Munsch... with my accent on."
Thanks for sharing this story with us Arlene! I love it.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Interviews in Toronto for Teaching in London, England

Classroom Canada is coming to Toronto!

We're attending the OISE job fair for teachers on December 12, 2008 and have decided to stay an extra day in order to interview teachers who wish to work in London in the spring or autumn of 2009.

The response from teachers in the Toronto area has been overwhelming. Your applications are flooding my inbox, and your feedback about the blog & the book is incredible. Thank you so much! I'm excited to meet you all in person.

If you're interested in teaching in London, England with Classroom Canada, please send your resume to apply@classroomcanada.com. Don't forget to let me know that you'd like to be interviewed in Toronto to reserve your spot.

Don't live near Toronto? Don't fret! Here's an updated list of the universities we will be attending in the coming months.
  • University of Victoria (for a presentation): December 16th, 2008
  • York University: January 6th (book launch) and January 8, 2009 (job fair)
  • Brock University: January 9, 2009
  • Queens University: January 13, 2009
  • UBC: January 23rd, 2009
  • Nipissing University: January 29th (book launch) and January 30, 2009 (job fair)
  • McGill University: February 2, 2009
  • Concordia University: February 4, 2009
  • University of Ottawa: February 6, 2009
  • University of Victoria: March 5 & 6, 2009

If you still don't find your area on our list, apply anyway. I can always interview you on the phone & meet you in person at a later date. I am considering adding a few more universities to the tour, so please let me know if you'd like to meet me at a university near you.

And of course, get your copy of the Guide to Teaching in London so you can learn everything you need to know about teaching in London, England. Sign up for our newsletters and become a fan of Classroom Canada on facebook here.

An Email from a Canadian Teacher With Experience in London, England


I ran a contest yesterday for subscribers of the Classroom Canada newsletters and gave away 3 copies of the ebook, Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians.

One of the winners sent me this email:

"I am so thrilled about the book!! I was just telling my mom a couple of days ago that I was going to buy it :))
-
I have been reading your blog for some time now, and let me tell you, it has been so helpful. Firstly, I have been teaching in London - and after a particularly bad day in the classroom (after which I felt like the most incompetent teacher ever!), I stumbled across your blog. The advice you give is great, and doesn't disguise the reality.
-
I made the mistake (?) of going to London with one agency, and ended up only getting 2-3 days of work a week. After stressing about money, I decided to return home for December, and also look for another (or an additional) agency.
-
I can't wait to return to England! So long story short, I will definitely be sending you my resume (from what I have read in your blog and on your website, I am impressed with Classroom Canada).
Thanks!"

Wow - another story of a Canadian teacher moving to London only to discover that she's not supported by her agency. Sadly, we hear about this happening all the time. So thanks for the support of Classroom Canada! Your story is exactly the reason I started this little teaching agency that could.

Here's another email from one of our teachers telling a similar story.

To enter our contests & read more from our teachers, sign up to our emails. Get your copy of the Guide to Teaching in London here.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Education in the News: UK vs. Canadian Newspapers

One of the reasons I love teaching in London, England is that education is talked about daily in the newspapers. It's a national issue and one that is debated and discussed on a very regular basis. Open any UK newspaper and you'll find an Education section, just like you would a Sports or Business section.

Canadians newspapers have occasional Education features, whereas UK newspapers have Education sections.

It's a good idea to start reading the UK education sections if you are considering teaching in England. Here are some links to get you started.

The Guardian Education Section

This is my personal favourite. Regular readers of this blog will notice that I am constantly referring to the Guardian. I was also a member of the Guardian book club when I lived in London, and got to meet Margaret Atwood and Zadie Smith through their author series. If you're an avid reader, join the club.

The Times Online Education Section
The best part of this section is Sarah Ebner's School Gate blog.

The Independent Education Section
Another good UK newspaper to follow.

Times Educational Supplement (aka The TES)
The TES is a weekly newspaper about Education. It's mostly read by teachers & administrators looking for new jobs, but it also carries a solid amount of news about changes to education as well. The online edition is excelent, and an incredible resource for overseas teachers to start their research into teaching in the UK.

Canadian Newspapers

The Globe & Mail

The Globe & Mail doesn't have an education section, but it does have articles related to education issues on a semi-regular basis. Today, I found a couple of good articles about Ontario teachers and their salary debates.

The National Post
The National Post barely touches on issues in education, at least if you judge today's edition. I couldn't find any articles on the Ontario salary issue, which surprised me.

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