Monday, May 3, 2010

Coffee Time with Classroom Canada - Esi from Toronto

Name: Esi Hayford

University: York University
Subjects: Math and Literacy
Ages You Teach: (ie KS1/KS2...) KS2, (grades 3-6)

1. How long have you been teaching in London?
I have been teaching in London since the beginning of November.

2. What do you teach?
I started out doing daily supply work but as of right now I am doing one to one with year six students that need extra support in either math or literacy.

3. Why did you chose to work with Classroom Canada?
I had heard very positive reviews about the agency. In addition to this, the fact that Victoria had started out working as an agency teacher was comforting because I knew I would be well taken care of by someone who would know what I would be going through inside the classroom.
4. What was the biggest adjustment for you to make in your teaching in London compared to Canada?
I think the fact that I had just come out of teacher’s college helped me to adjust better to teaching in another country because I was more flexible. I didn’t really have a set way or well defined teaching style so adapting to the system over here was a little easier.
5. Describe a typical London day in 3-4 sentences.
I drag myself out of bed at 6:30 and leave for work at 7:15. By midday after working with a few students, I’m reminded of why I love teaching. I usually get home around 4:30 and just relax. Pretty simple!
6. What is the one piece of advice you can offer a Canadian teacher considering the move to London?
Ask yourself if you are a flexible and easygoing person. If not reconsider teaching overseas. This experience has been amazing for me and I would not change it for the world but I don’t think I would have enjoyed it as much if I came here with rigid expectations.
7. Describe the funniest thing that’s happened to you in your year so far:
I was working one on one with a student and I had begun to wonder if he was actually taking in any of the things that I was teaching him because he was so easily distracted. During a recent session he had to answer an addition question and he used all the math concepts that I had ever taught him(even the ones that had nothing to do with the question). His answer was completely wrong but just knowing that he had actually been listening came as a complete shock and I could not help but laugh.
8. Describe the worst thing:
At the beginning of one of my one to one programmes at a new school, I was introduced to the students in a way that implied that all the students that I worked with were dumb. Instead of taking the students aside to introduce myself, a member of staff at the school had the students stand up in front of their classmates so that I could identify them. As a result, the students’ self-esteem was lowered and I had to work extremely hard to show them that there was nothing wrong with getting extra support.
9. What made you stay with Classroom Canada, rather than any other agency?
There were times in the beginning when I felt a little worried about whether I was going to get enough work but in the end I realised that all I needed was to be more patient. From the receptionist, Eve, to the consultants, everyone was so friendly.
What qualities do you have that make your stay in London more enjoyable?
I think being flexible, easy going and open-minded are the main qualities that have helped me to enjoy myself in London.
Anything else to add?
Classroom management is an issue in many London classrooms BUT these children are just like children everywhere. Just like in Toronto, children react to teachers based on the way they are treated. When you walk into a classroom be strong AND compassionate.
Thanks so much Esi!  Any questions or comments from our readers? Please share your thoughts below.  To join our team of teachers & teaching assistants in London, just send your resume & cover letter to apply at classroomcanada dot com.

More Resources for Teaching in London, England

Classroom Canada website
Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians ebook
Sign up for our Newsletters
Canadians & Americans in the UK blog

1 comment:

  1. Very great Esi, keep up the all the hard work. And always stay ambitious.


Thanks for sharing your two pence!


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