Friday, April 29, 2011

Congratulations William and Kate!




I cannot believe this, but I am up at 3 am and watching the royal wedding. Just to clarify - I just happened to wake up at 2:45 and realized I could watch, so I tuned in! I did not set my alarm! :)

Kate and William really seem like a sweet, loving couple. I wish them all the best!


Tell me, for those of you in London, where were you watching? What was it like?

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sometimes you just have to laugh! (part 2)




A good sense of humour is one quality that we look for in candidates interested in teaching in the inner city schools of London, UK.


Last week we highlighted some funny moments in the lives of our Canadian teachers. Read below for more hilarious moments!


The stories below were all pulled from our Coffee Time Teacher Interviews that are archived in this blog. Our teachers were responding to the question:



Describe the funniest thing that's happened to you in your year so far:




The funniest thing that has happened to me this year would have to be the time when a group of students and myself were playing football (aka soccer) and one of them accidentally kicked me in my foot. My foot was quite swollen and one of the students (who wants to be a paramedic) quickly pulled out his first aid kit (from out of thin air) and bandaged my foot. The head teacher insisted I go to the hospital and thought it would be a good idea if that student came along so he could get some first hand experience on what it would be like to be a paramedic. For the next three hours I was in the hospital with this student listening to him argue with the nurse about my X-rays. - TRUMAINE


There have been loads of funny things that have happened to me, but I think the first real culture shock I experienced was during a camping trip. I was walking home and saw something that was black and white - my first instinct was that it was a skunk. Then I thought, "Wait - wrong country, must be a fox," but when I got a little bit closer I realized it was a massive fox.

As I crept closer I realized it was a BADGER! And I had no idea what to do. Had it been a bear I would have been prepared but a badger? So I just walked passed it, about a foot away. Then the next morning I was informed that badgers are in fact very dangerous animals, and next time I see one not to go near it. So just watch out for the badgers! - SARAH


It was my first day in the Year 5 class at my school. I had things under control and everyone was on task and working well. One student puts his hand up. "Miss, what football team do you support?"

Since this was still my first week in London, I was still adjusting to some of the cultural differences between London and Canada. One thing I hadn't picked up on at this particular time, was how huge football (soccer) is, and how intense fans are. Not even thinking, I replied, "I'm not sure, we don't really have football in Canada. Which team should I support?"

This, of course, results in an all-out riot, with the children yelling at me/to each other "Arsenal!" "Liverpool!" "Chelsea!" "Tottenham!" trying to recruit me to support 'their' team. At the time, I definitely wasn't laughing, because I had to get everyone under control again, but looking back now, it's hilarious. - HEATHER


I fell on my face. It was also my favorite lesson ever. I got their attention while picking my way across the Year 1s room of miniature chairs and tables, with a giant costume basket in hand that offered more blind spots than clearance. I wasn't even half way through the gauntlet of tables when my toe caught on a chair sticking out and I went down hard, elbows first, leaving the costumes and chairs scattered and a class of six year old kids silent. The classroom assistant was a 6 foot 5 man who empathized that the tables were a little too close for comfort.

Red faced, I jumped straight into the lesson with the objective of "I can create a character." I became many things in the space of five minutes. While sporting a pint sized Monsters Inc costume, I took inspiration from our play time snack of bananas
to become the One-Eyed-Fried-Green-Banana-Eater.

I had way too much fun to be paid that day! Not only did I get to be silly and engage with all the students but I also got to see each of them on stage developing and sharing a character in the hot seat. It affirmed why I love teaching! - ERICA

There have been so many funny moments - students mimicking my accent, and helping me to imitate their own South London accents in return! My first year as a Drama teacher has proved hilarious.

A few weeks ago I spent an entire period playing a very interesting version of duck-duck-goose with Year 12 Drama students (aged 16-17) which had us all laughing until our sides hurt. There are some very special students here with whom I've shared a lot of laughs. It's definitely what makes the job worthwhile. - KELLY


I taught ballet at a girls school once. That was weird. I don't know a thing about ballet and neither did any of them. We just stared at each other for 45 minutes. - JUSTIN


There have been little interactions with the students that have really made me smile. For example, one day I was talking to a group of students as they were working on a project. Somehow, the topic of conversation turned to British television shows. One of the students asked me if I had ever seen a particular show at which point I told them that I hadn't as I didn't have a television.

A hush fell over the table. Shocked, one of the students at the table turned me and said, "You don't have a television? Then what do you do when you get home?!"

I tried to explain (without convincing any of them) that I filled my time reading, using the computer, etc and that I didn't need a television. However, I have since caved and now have a television set, so maybe they were right after all! - JESSICA



No doubt there are many, many more funny moments to report!

We'd love to hear from you, so leave your comments below!



And....if you are looking for ways to bring humourous moments (ok, there are challenging moments too...) into your teaching career, think about teaching in London, UK.

We're currently interviewing teachers (primary, secondary and special needs) who would like to work in London beginning October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.



Resources for Teaching in London
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

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Teachers TV website will cease to be available after April 29th

We just received the email below from our friends at Teachers.TV in the UK. For regular readers of this blog, this is very sad news indeed. The cancellation of Teachers.TV means that we're all missing out on more amazing resources about teaching in the UK.

Originally we thought that their website and videos would continue to exist, but according to the email below, the website and all of its content will cease to be available after Friday, April 29, 2011.

Here is the email we received yesterday:


Dear Classroom,

I am writing to remind you that, following the termination of the Teachers TV contract, the Teachers TV website will cease to be available from 29th April, 2011.

Where can I find Teachers TV videos after the 29th April?

The Department for Education (DfE) will make all Teachers TV programmes available to distributors on a non-exclusive basis. Any distributor who provides Teachers TV programmes will be required to stream them for free at the point of use. Details of where you can access Teachers TV programmes can be found on the DfE website.

Where can I find more information about the closure of the Teachers TV website?

For more information please visit our help pages.

What do I need to do if I have a viewing log, or links to the Teachers TV website?

If you have completed a Teachers TV viewing log, or have links to Teachers TV videos on your website or VLE, you need to take action. Please check our help pages for details.

Thank you for your continued support. Please pass this message on to any colleagues who may be interested.

Sarah

We are very sorry to see this excellent website go.

Thank you, Teachers TV, for all of the great resources you've provided to our Canadian teachers in the past!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Coffee Time with Classroom Canada - Justin from Lakehead



Name: Justin Rawana

University: Lakehead University

Subjects: English and History

Ages you teach: Secondary


How long have you been teaching in London?
Coming up on six months now.

What do you teach?

I'm trained in English and history but in addition to those I also teach maths and science. That's the way it goes at pupil referral units though - you teach whatever the students need and whatever you're comfortable with!
Why did you choose to work with Classroom Canada?

I wasn't impressed with the way larger agencies represented themselves. They recruit teachers by the THOUSANDS and use that as a selling point, where as I see that and think: great. I've never been a nameless bar-code before. Classroom Canada felt much more personable. For example they were highly concerned with making their teacher's transition to London as comfortable as possible. That's not something a corporation does. That's something a friend does!

What was the biggest adjustment for you to make in your teaching in London compared to Canada?
Well I work in special needs now which isn't something I did a whole lot of back home. I was glad I made the switch though because SEN is very rewarding. I suppose it took me a while to get familiar with the different issues that face London youth: gangs, ethnic violence, David Cameron (ha!) But, like anything else, you get used to it and do your best to help your students move on.
Describe a typical London day in 3-4 sentences.
I work full-time at a pupil referral unit but in the evenings I do any number of things! Lately I've been enjoying the awesome London parks and grabbing a pint with my fellow Canuck teachers! At least one of us usually has a hilarious teaching moment to share...

What is the one piece of advice you can offer a Canadian teacher considering the move to London?

Roll the dice! You'll never know if you're cut out for London unless you come here and try it out. Worst case scenario - you don't like it and go home. Can't say I know anyone who has done that though!
Describe the funniest thing that's happened to you in your year so far:

I taught ballet at a girls school once. That was weird. I don't know a thing about ballet and neither did any of them. We just stared at each other for 45 minutes.
Describe the worst thing:

I had a tutoring position with a young student for a couple months that didn't end well. He had severe behavioral issues so our sessions were pretty taxing. I think he needed a certain kind of teacher and I know now that I wasn't it. It was a learning experience though!
What made you stay with Classroom Canada, rather than any other agency?

The awesome SEN department, hands down. They've found me some great jobs over the months and still check up on me every now and again to make sure everything's chill. Keep it up girls!
What qualities do you have that make your teaching in London enjoyable?
I think I'm a pretty relaxed guy. I'm not that yell-in-your-face kind of teacher that I think would have turned a lot of my students off. I'm more of a finish-this-worksheet-and-we'll-play-poker-for-ten-minutes kind of teacher. It sounds lazy but my year-ten student just aced his organic-science test! Can't argue with results ;)
Thanks Justin!

We are currently interviews teachers who would like to work in London starting in October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.

Resources for Teaching in London

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

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sometimes you just have to laugh!



A good sense of humour is one quality that we look for in candidates interested in teaching in the inner city schools of London, UK. Why, you ask? Read below, for some of the funny moments in the lives of our Canadian teachers.

The answers were all pulled from our Coffee Time Teacher Interviews that are archived in this blog. Our teachers were responding to the question:



Describe the funniest thing that's happened to you in your year so far:

Almost every day I get asked if I know Justin Bieber. Usually I get a kick out of that. Also, young students ask the funniest questions about Canada. For example: “Have you ever been attacked by a bear?” “Are people in Canada big?” “Do they eat mice in Canada?” The list is endless. - TOM

I think the day-to-day sayings of the students are what make me chuckle the most. I frequently hear the questions: “Are you from Canadia?” “Can you speak Canadian?” “Canadia isn’t part of America?” When they ask where in Canada I’m from and I say “London” they really start to get confused. - PATRICK
I was standing at the bus stop last week and one of the 7 year old students in my class stopped and said “Hi Miss Terluk, what bus are you waiting for?”. I said “The 333”. She said “Does that go to the airport?” She thought I flew home to Canada every night! - KARIN

There's another Canadian teacher at my school who had broken his ankle during a staff basketball game. However, he decided to tell all of the students in the school that it happened when him and I were involved in the Annual Great Canadian Moose Racing Championships.

The story goes that he was in the lead and I cut him off, causing him to fall off and get trampled by my moose. On the bright side, I did allegedly win the race and become the Canadian Mooseracing Champion, but now the students won't leave me alone until I show them pictures and teach them how to ride one! - ERIC
After telling a year five class that I am from Canada, a girl with a puzzled look on her face says, "Sir, I'm confused. How can you be Canadian if you have an American accent and Australian hair?" - JONNY

I was teaching the children how to write an instructional text, so we were focusing on writing step-by-step instructions. I asked the children to write instructions for “how to make a peanut butter sandwich”, something every Canadian child would know how to do. When I asked the children what the first step would be, they gave me answers like “crush the peanuts” and “mix the peanuts in with butter”. I realised that the majority of my students had never even tasted peanut butter before, let alone made a sandwich with it. My TA’s still tease me about loving peanut butter so much. - KIRBIE
The funniest event happened on my first day of teaching in a wonderful Reception class (Kindergarten). At the end of the day, the students wanted to know all about me and Canada. As I was trying to answer all their many questions, the Teaching Assistant asked something along the lines of "do you know what an igloo is?" and my response was "...umm... yes..." The next thing I know, on the projector there is an image from Google of an igloo, followed by the Teaching Assistant informing the kids of how terrible it must be for me to live in one of these all year long.... Yes, we live in igloos, wear coats made of moose fur, and we eat raw fish.... Good old Canadians! - NATHALIE


During my first week of teaching, the students asked me where to put their homework folders. I pointed to the large plastic container that you'd typically find at a dollar store back in Canada and said, "Put them in the bin." To that, the children replied, "What?! You want us to put our homework in the bin [trash can]?!" I quickly learned not to make that mistake again. – TRISHA
I think that something like this has been mentioned before, underwear here is called pants. On one of my supply days in early September I was in a year 5 class while trying to rush them to get ready for PE when I shouted "Come on year five! You're wasting your PE time. You, hurry, take off your pants and get those shorts on!" Well, telling a year 5 boy to take off his pants had 30 kids screeching and giggling and some even told me that I was gross.
Needless to say, we were late for PE but only because I made the class sit down so I could explain some of the things that we had different words for in Canada (ie pants and trousers). The last thing I wanted on one of my first days of teaching was some kid's Mom calling in to say that his teacher had shouted at him to strip down! - JAIME
Myself, along with my two flat mates decided to go site seeing our first week here. Very typical, obviously. So we decided we were going to Hyde Park and Buckingham Palace for the day. Hyde Park - Beautiful. We finally arrived at the Palace and we did not even realize where we were. We thought the Palace was the Parliament Buildings!? So we asked someone where the Palace was, only to get a smart answer 'ummm right behind you?' Embarrassing, yet hilarious Canadian Moment. - JENN

No doubt there are many, many more funny moments to report!
We'd love to hear from you, so leave your comments below!



And....if you are looking for ways to bring humourous moments (ok, there are challenging moments too...) into your teaching career, think about teaching in London, UK.

We're currently interviewing teachers (primary, secondary and special needs) who would like to work in London beginning October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.



Resources for Teaching in London
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

Monday, April 18, 2011

Look at My Happy Rainbow!



Happy Monday!

If you are looking for a way to brighten your Monday mornings, I'd like to recommend that you check out this charming little blog I found the other day:
Look at my Happy Rainbow!

It's a great blog written by an inspired male Kindergarten teacher who loves to tell stories about his day with his "little sprouts."


There is something so endearing about the way Kindergarten children go about their days (and the ways they are interpreted by their teachers).

Reading this blog is one way to guarantee that your day starts out with a smile!

 
What are the guaranteed ways that make YOU start your day with a smile?


Leave your comments below!



And....if you are looking for ways to bring something positive into your teaching career, think about teaching in London, UK.

We're currently interviewing teachers (primary, secondary and special needs) who would like to work in London (and enjoy 13 weeks of holiday per year - now that should put a smile on your face!) starting in October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.


Resources for Teaching in London
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

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Cold Snap: Bulgaria Stories a must-read!




For many of you teachers in London, the long April break is well underway - congratulations! I'm sure many of you are out there exploring exciting travel destinations - Portugal, Paris, Amsterdam, Istanbul, the list is endless...

For any of you still looking for an exciting place to travel, please consider BULGARIA. Bulgaria is where I used to teach (back in the day....1994-96) and it is a fantastic country. Beautiful scenery, great wine, friendly people, fantastic architecture and a lesser known European travel destination. You won't be disappointed.




Even though I have been back from Bulgaria for almost 15 years, I still have a very special place in my heart for the country. The same way, I guess, that I still have a fondness for all things British, that stems from the time I spent living near London. (Fortunately I am able to work in a place that allows me to keep my connection to London and Britain alive and kicking!)


Anyway, if you aren't able to travel to Bulgaria during this break, consider at least reading a fantastic new collection of short stories about this country, a book called
Cold Snap: Bulgaria Stories.


Cold Snap
is the debut collection of short stories from Cynthia Morrison Phoel, a writer and fellow Peace Corps volunteer who served in Bulgaria at the same time I did. It doesn't matter if you have a previous connection to Bulgaria or not. The characters are so well developed, the location of the village of "Old Mountain" so well described, and the plot lines so well conceived, these stories are sure to amaze and amuse anyone who is interested in good literature.

You can read an excerpt from the book at: http://www.cynthiaphoel.com/excerpt.html.


But I think the praise for Cold Snap speaks for itself:


“I am greatly impressed with Cold Snap, a look at Bulgarian life—family life, school life, frustration, even passion and desire. Cynthia Phoel writes from inside this culture, convincingly and with real insight.”
—Paul Theroux, author of The Great Railway Bazaar


Cold Snap marks the premiere of a bold and talented writer. Phoel writes with great authority and examines the lives of her characters fearlessly, without sentimentality or sensationalism. The writing is pitch perfect; the stories are powerful and heartbreaking. There won’t be many books published this year of the same quality.”
—Robert Boswell, author of The Heyday
of the Insensitive Bastards


"Phoel's first collection of stories and a novella incisively dramatizes the interlocked lives of the beleaguered denizens of a Bulgarian town. Phoel spent time in Bulgaria as a Peace Corps volunteer, but one gets no sense of an outsider looking in. Instead, she fully inhabits the minds of her jittery characters as they grapple with various forms of family pressure, poverty, and the maddening cold. Young Dobrin's brow is becoming permanently furrowed as he worries about his overworked mother and cavalier father, as a giant satellite dish funnels a nonstop stream of soccer and porn into their humble and frigid apartment. Galia has been utterly passive, but now that she's pregnant, mutinous thoughts are brewing. Mathematician Plamen is plagued by self-loathing. In charge of central heating, Nasko is besieged. With the fierce cold serving as a metaphor for the deep social freeze of this long tyrannized land, Phoel is as confident as the great Russian writer Gogol in her acid humor and insightful portrayals of people who “could endure anything,” making for an unusually commanding and affecting debut."


--Donna Seaman, Booklist


Anyway, I just wanted to share my love for this country and encourage those of you close enough to go ahead and have a visit.


Leave a comment below and let us know where you are traveling this April break and, what you are reading!


If you are interested in travel and adventure (as well as teaching), we're currently interviewing teachers who would like to work in London (and enjoy 13 weeks of holiday per year!) starting in October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.


Resources for Teaching in London
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

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Bringing a global perspective into your classroom with Global Education News



One of the things I find most exciting about teaching in inner city London schools is the fact that children from every culture, religion and economic strata will likely make up your classes. You may be in one class of 22 students, for example, and find that most are not from England originally. Instead you may find that there are 15 languages other than English that are primarily spoken at home. What an exciting, and yes, perhaps challenging, environment in which to teach!

You will soon discover, however, that the children are not the "ones with the weird accent" - you are! But it really doesn't matter because you ALL will inevitably - and eventually - end up learning a tremendous amount from each other about your cultures, religions, and countries of origin.

It's important to make cross-cultural connections with your students early on and bring a global perspective into your lessons as much as possible.


One great resource that provides cross-cultural classroom materials and ideas is the National Peace Corps Association's (NPCA) quarterly newsletter called "Global Education News." Through this Global Education program, the NPCA supports educators in classrooms and communities around the globe working to infuse global perspectives and foster and a greater understanding of the world in which we live.


The purpose of the actual newsletter is to connect K-12 classroom teachers and other interested educators with ready-to-use materials and information for infusing a more global perspective into everyday curriculum in all subject areas.


Check out their recent Spring 2011 newsletter at:
http://www.peacecorpsconnect.org/resources/education/newsletter/

They also have a wide variety of other classroom materials available for you to peruse at:
http://www.peacecorpsconnect.org/resources/education/classroom-materials/

Please leave your comments below if you have other suggestions for cross-cultural resources and/or activities for your classroom.




If you are interested in teaching in this fantastic environment and joining our wonderful team of educators, we're currently interviewing teachers who would like to work in London starting in October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.

Resources for Teaching in London

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

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Coffee Time with Classroom Canada - Kristen from Nipissing


Name: Kristen Rossetti

University: Nipissing University

Subjects: A little bit of everything!

Ages You Teach: Right now I have students from year 2 to year 11



How long have you been teaching in London?
I've been teaching since October 2010 - a little over six months.
What do you teach?
Originally I trained to teach secondary English and History. Since moving here though I have definitely enjoyed branching out! Right now I am in a long-term position at a pupil referral unit in East London. I work with 8 different really great students who aren’t able to attend mainstream school for medical or behavioural reasons, helping them get caught up in maths, english and science. I also spend one day a week teaching at the local hospital in the borough.
Why did you choose to work with Classroom Canada?
When I was looking into moving to London some of the other agencies felt very impersonal. They seemed to be selling all the benefits of their particular agency more than the benefits of teaching in London. With Classroom, I never felt that way. I had to show them why I would be a good asset to the Classroom team, a sure sign that I would be working with a company that had a reputation for good teachers.
What was the biggest adjustment for you to make in your teaching in London compared to Canada?
I know that the first instinct for a lot of people might be to say the students--but for me it really hasn’t been. Kids are kids no matter where you find them. Sure, they have different sets of obstacles and issues that they may be dealing with, which definitely influences their behaviour at times, but usually it’s just a case of recognizing that and working with them to find a common ground.
Describe a typical London day in 3-4 sentences.
Every weekday I get up around 6.30 before traveling about 45 minutes to work in East London. My job requires that I do a lot of home visits in order to see my students, two in the morning, and one in the afternoon. I get home about half past four and usually do about an hour or so of planning and marking before....well, all sorts of things! Lately the warm weather has meant visits to the park, practicing ukulele and a pint on a patio with friends.
What is the one piece of advice you can offer a Canadian teacher considering the move to London?
Do it! Moving to a new city and saying goodbyes to friends and family can be terrifying--but so worth it! Teaching in London is definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity and one that you won’t ever forget, or regret!
Describe the funniest thing that's happened to you in your year so far:

Teaching wise, it’s definitely a good laugh when my students ask about or try and copy my accent. Because of the huge influence of American television, being a teacher from North America is usually a good way to get their attention from the very beginning, which can definitely be helpful for classroom management! I get a lot of the usual questions--"do you know Justin Bieber?" and "my Granny lives in Canada, do you know her?" but probably one of the funniest things I’ve been told by a student is “Miss, you are just like Beyonce!”
Describe the worst thing:

I thought for a long time about this question...and am really happy to say that I couldn’t think of anything! Don’t get me wrong--I definitely have had some days where everything has seemed to go poorly--from my alarm not going off, to a classroom of students who all seem to be misbehaving. But I’ve had so many other wonderful experiences both inside the classroom and out that all of those other things haven’t even been significant enough to really remember.
What made you stay with Classroom Canada, rather than any other agency?

Classroom has always been there for me--right from my very first meeting with Victoria to now. Thanks to Classroom I have a place to live, a great network of other Canadian teachers and a long-term position in a job that I absolutely love. I also really appreciate that even though I have a long-term position, representatives from Classroom still make sure to call every now and then and make sure that I am still happy and enjoying it--which I am!
What qualities do you have that make your teaching in London enjoyable?
Being relaxed and flexible are definitely the two qualities I have that have really helped me in London. I tend not to take myself, or little things, too seriously. If you worry about every little detail it’s really hard to just stop and enjoy the moment--and teaching in London has given me so many wonderful moments! I would hate to have missed out on having a laugh with my students or learning more about them just because I was worrying about something I couldn’t change anyway! For me, teaching to London and “going with the flow” have become synonymous. Every single day might be totally different than the last--which is only stressful if you let it be. I like to embrace the difference and I think because of that I have been able to find something to love, or learn from, in every day.
Thanks Kristen!

We're currently interviews teachers who would like to work in London starting in October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.

Resources for Teaching in London


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

Monday, April 11, 2011

More Resources for Teachers About to Move to London

So my colleague, Victoria Westcott, wrote this post awhile back and I thought it would be a great time for a repost and update.

I didn't change the video - it's way too cute - and the resources to check out are below! Please leave your comment if you can think of any other important resources to add to this list.





1. Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians.
All 110 pages are jam-packed with everything you need to know about teaching in London, England. Written by Victoria Westcott, edited by Jennifer Westcott and designed by Caroline Bishop.

2. Living in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians by Network Canada.
I can't say this enough - get this book. Every question you have is answered and more! Health care, apartment hunting, job hunting, where to go oot & aboot, taxes...it's all in here.

3. TES Connect
The TES - or Times Educational Supplement - is a newspaper dedicated to teachers & education. Their website is packed with useful information for all teachers. The community is a place where you can discuss issues and post your questions and is the place I recommend for you. You can also see jobs posted by schools across the UK. If you're keen to apply, please read this post first.

4. The Guardian Newspaper - Education Section
Regular readers have likely noticed that I am often inspired by what I read in the Guardian. I love this paper. Yes, it's lefty and I'm okay with that. There's also the Times (which is where the TES originates), but I prefer the Guardian. We just don't have anything like it in Canada (seriously, the Globe & Mail and the National Post just don't compare). You can get a weekly Guardian sent to your home in Canada, which sums up the events into a neat little newspaper, but costs a fortune. I read it online, and try to go to the Education section a few times a week.

5. Teachers TV
This is probably the best resource for you and shouldn't be way down at #5. Here you can watch real teachers in real classrooms and the issues they face. Learn everything by watching television. Really, this site is brilliant. I have to admit that my first reaction to this station was "Oh ya right - in my free time away from teaching I'm gonna watch tv about teaching". Well, I was wrong. This channel (only available in the UK) and website is brilliant. How else can you see what it's really like? Watch more tv!

Have we missed anything great? Please let us know by posting your comment below.

If you like this post, you might like A Simple Guide to Supply Teaching in London, 10 Myths About Teaching in London, Important Words to Know and Typical Interview Questions for Teaching in London.

Subscribe to the RSS feed as well!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Teaching in inner city schools - why do we do it?




In a March 15, 2011 blogpost on the Huffington Post website, Larry Strauss, veteran high school English teacher, basketball coach and novelist, made up his list of seven "Survive and Thrive" reasons why "Inner-City Teachers don't leave" their jobs.

I've take the liberty to re-post a brief version of his list below. (To see his full blogpost, visit: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/larry-strauss/survive-and-thrive-why-so_b_835529.html)

Some of the reasons why inner-city teachers don't leave their jobs:


1. Not laid off in bad economic times.


2. Quitting is not an option.


3. Effective and supportive administration.


4. Enjoy the work; love the students.


5. Collegial camaraderie and support.


6. No serious mishaps [to threaten a teacher's safety].


7. A strong philosophical belief in the value of education.


I'm curious to know from all of you out there currently mastering the art of teaching in inner city London schools:

Why do you do it? What makes you stay?


Add to this list and leave your comments below!


And for those of you who think you are interested in inner-city teaching jobs in London, UK, send your cover letter and resume to: apply [at] classroomcanada [dot] com.

We are currently recruiting for teaching positions beginning October 2011.

Resources for Teaching in London


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

Monday, April 4, 2011

Royal Wedding Preparations...in Canada?


OK...so I live in Victoria, British Columbia, and in many ways it is the closest I can get to London, UK without leaving Canada. We love our high tea, our weather is similar (rain, bits of sun, rain, clouds, gray, more rain, another taste of sun, rain, gray...you get the idea), and we (granted, not all of us) adore the royal family!

So it is no surprise that preparations are well underway for royal celebrations on that royal wedding day, April 29.

According to an article in today's LA Times, we Victorians no longer have to fret about not being able to travel to London in order to celebrate the royal wedding. The famous Fairmont Empress Hotel, Victoria's landmark hotel along the inner harbour, has a wide range of events planned on and around April 29.

For example, there is the "Rise & Shine With the Royals" breakfast event beginning at 3 a.m. (Pacific). Hotel guests and other visitors to Victoria are welcome to view the live broadcast of the ceremonies in their pajamas or bathrobes while munching on a traditional English breakfast.

If you aren't an early riser, there is a special Royal Subjects Picnic & Tea on the Empress' front lawn. Guests will receive British flags for the occasion.

And if you are really feeling royal, you can also dine on the hotel's exclusive fine china (that is generally reserved for royal visits) on evenings throughout the weekend.

I fondly remember watching the wedding of Lady Diana and Prince Charles on our little tv back in 1981. The image of Diana's wedding dress train is still imprinted in my mind (how did it fit into that carriage???). As an 11-year-old the whole event was simply dreamy to watch.



I'm not sure I'll be attending any of the above events in Victoria, but, I will still be curious to see what classy dress Kate has chosen for herself.

I am also very curious to know:

What are YOU doing to celebrate the royal wedding?
Are your students in school talking about it at all?

Leave your comments below!

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