Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Inspirational Videos on Kids with Autism

I've seen a few really great newsclips about exceptional children with autism that I wanted to share with you here.

All 3 of these videos show exceptional children on the autism spectrum and will leave you feeling positive & hopeful.

I also recommend that you see Claire Danes in the HBO movie Temple Grandin.

Autism the Musical is an HBO documentary that shows kids with Autism doing something nobody thought they could do.

Do you know of any other great newsclips or movies about kids with autism? Please share below.

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Classroom Canada website
Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians ebook
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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Attend a Webinar: Teaching in London 101 and How to Write a CV/Resume & Cover Letter for Overseas Jobs

Upcoming Workshops & Webinars

Webinar: Teaching in London 101

1st of Every Month, 5:00pm - 6:00pm PST

One hour LIVE webinar about teaching in London.
Sign up here.

Learn the basics for teaching in London, England:
- Who teaches in London?
- What jobs are available?
- When do the jobs start?
- What visas are you eligible for?
- What are the accommodations like?
- Why do schools hire foreign teachers?
- What is the cost of living like?

All participants who attend  & complete a brief survey will receive the award winning ebook, Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians, normally sold for $29.95.

This webinar costs only $9.95 to attend, and we're donating half the money we get to Pocket Change Heroes which will help us build a school in Sierra Leone, West Africa.

Webinar: How to Write a Resume/CV and Cover Letter for Teaching Jobs Abroad

April 2nd 2012 5:00pm PST

We will focus on:
•How to fit the most relevant information into just 2 pages.
•How to write a cover letter that makes the reader want to read it again (as opposed to the typical 10 seconds we usually take to scan a cover letter)
•How to make yourself stand out amongst all the teachers applying for the same jobs

This webinar costs $14.95 to attend and will help you apply for teaching jobs all over the world (not just London, England). A portion of the proceeds from this webinar will go to Pocket Change Heroes to build a school in West Africa.

Be sure to sign up for our emails to hear about the events first.

Resources for Teaching in London 

Classroom Canada website 
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Monday, March 26, 2012

Head of History Department: Permanent Teaching Job in London, England

Here's an exciting opportunity for an experienced History Teacher that starts in just a few short weeks:

Photo by Graeme Weatherston

Head of History / Second of Humanities

One of the most improving Secondary Schools in England is seeking an enthusiastic and ambitious History Teacher to become Head of History and Second of Humanities. This is a permanent position, beginning after the Easter break.

The successful applicant will be responsible for developing the History curriculum alongside supporting the development of the Humanities Department. A positive and effective team leader is required to support and monitor staff in the department with regards the quality and effectiveness of the teaching provided. 

The role also involves evaluation and development of assessment procedures and the effective use of assessment data. This position requires excellent curriculum knowledge and a detailed understanding of the key areas of the History and Humanities curriculum.

This is a new post and so the school looking for an innovative and creative educator with a strong track record of curriculum development and raising attainment. The successful applicant should expect History to form the majority but not the whole of their timetable; the ability to teach other subjects may be an advantage.

The school for 11-16 year olds, located in the London Borough of Haringey, is making rapid progress and boasts excellent facilities following recent renovation work. A highly talented, motivated team will be able to assist the successful applicant in order to ease the transition into this new role.

If you are an ambitious, committed educator dedicated to improving the learning and life chances of students this could be the role for you. Applications are being considered for this position now and will continue to be considered until the end of March 2012.

To apply, send your resume and cover letter to apply AT right away.   Interviews will be conducted on Wednesday of this week.

Resources for Teaching in London 
Classroom Canada website 
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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Teach in China with Disney! ESL Jobs for Great Teachers

Photo by Stuart Miles

Here's something new & exciting to Classroom Canada.  We've recently been asked to refer 10 ESL teachers to Disney schools in China. Yes, you read that right - Disney, China, 10 ESL teaching jobs.  Intriqued?  Read on...

Teaching roles in China Exciting Foreign Trainer positions….

The opportunity:

No one speaks the language of children better than Disney and nothing captures their imagination more than a great story.  Combining the art of storytelling with breakthrough technology methodology, Disney spark a child’s passion for learning English.

This is a great opportunity for a 12 – 18 month contract, or longer so a real chance to become immersed in an amazing culture, supported by a premium employer.

The role:

Disney English is looking for exceptional individuals to instruct children ages 2-12 at their Language Learning Centres throughout China.  Trainers will use an innovative and immersive Disney program, leveraging Disney’s beloved characters, stories, songs, animation and other materials, to provide a highly engaging and effective premium learning experience.

The English Language Trainer reports to the Language Learning Director (LLD) in the Disney English Language Learning Centre.

Your responsibility:

Using the Disney English interactive content and comprehensive classroom/home delivery of Disney English including the “on-line” parent portal, along with scripted printed materials, multimedia and a variety of audio-visual aids – you will deliver exciting sessions with an emphasis on dialogue, story-telling, singing and role-playing, alongside more formal exercises, language games and literature.

You’ll be supported by the local Assistant Trainers and will attend weekly meetings with your LLD. 

Alongside lesson preparation, you’ll be expected to support students with private lessons to language learners as required.  Interaction with both parents and students will ensure that language learning is fun, engaging and educational.

Qualifications and experience

You will have a Bachelor’s degree along with at least 1 years’ experience teaching, although ideally 2 or more years’ experience teaching English to children.  To ensure learning is of the highest calibre, candidates should be native English speakers.  You’ll have an internationally recognized TEFL or TESOL certification (although this can be obtained via Disney English).

To bring the world of Disney alive you’ll need to be creative and an excellent communicator so a background or passion for music, art and the performing arts would be a great benefit.

The Reward:

Your average salary is 10,000 – 11,000 RMB per month equating to $1587-1745 USD per month.  Your accommodation costs will be covered (a further $475 ) along with a training bonus of approximately $1100.  You’ll have high health and dental insurance premiums paid on your behalf to ensure you have access to top quality healthcare and your flight to China will be secured.  You’ll have a monthly return flight allowance which equates to a total of $790 USD.

 Being a part of the Disney Team provides you with free entrance to the parks and an amazing discount in Disney stores.  And brilliant credentials for your career.

To apply, send your CV/Resume & Cover Letter to and be sure to use the subject heading DISNEY JOB.

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Monday, March 19, 2012

Projecting Your Future: What's Your Dream Job?

Image by Victor Habbick
I did a Teaching Abroad workshop a couple of months ago for McGill University's Faculty of Education.  I asked 40 student-teachers what they would do if money was no object.  What was their dream job so to speak?  Their responses came in something like this...

I'd like to start a new school for underpriveledged kids in a developing country.

I'd like to teach. I don't really care where. I just want to teach.

I want to teach somewhere tropical and warm.

I'd like to be a billionaire and not have a job actually.

My dream job is to work at Disneyland (she said shyly).

I want to become a school principal.
And so on and so forth.  The point I wanted to get across is that none of their dream jobs were actually dreams.  They were practical and realistic goals.  Nobody said they wanted to become the next great astronaut without any training whatsoever.  Nobody said they wanted to cure cancer in a week.  Nobody said they wanted to become the world's greatest teacher.  They just want to teach.  Have a good teaching job, maybe become a principal and maybe start their own schools one day. 

Now, I try to ask the same question in the interviews I give to teachers who want to work in London, England.  I ask "Where do you see yourself in 5 years time in terms of your career?"  The reason I ask this is 2 fold: to see if the teacher has really thought their career goals through and also to see if they actually want to be a teacher in the long run. 

We all know the statistic that gets thrown around in Canada: 50% of new teachers stop teaching within the first 5 years of graduating with a B.Ed.  I suppose I'm one of them as I don't teach in a traditional school setting anymore, but instead teach workshops, webinars & seminars to new student-teachers.  

But the point is this:  If you don't know what your dream job is, you'll never actually get it.

I'm not talking specifics here. I'm talking about asking yourself what it would feel like to wake up in the morning excited to go to work. What would it feel like to love your job?  What does that look like in your minds eye?  More often than not, we try to picture jobs that already exist & put ourselves into that picture.  And that's awesome - if it works.  But I would say that imagining the feeling of having that awesome job is way better than trying to picture that perfect job itself.  That way, when you get the feeling, you know you've got it.

Let's look at my life as an example. In 2004 I thought teaching in inner city London was my absolute dream job.  And for a while, it was.  I was doing exactly what I said I wanted to do only a year before.  But now I'm an entrepreneur -- in starting Classroom Canada, I learned that my dream job was actually to work with new & experienced teachers and help them teach in England.  I still love teaching, but in actual fact, I think I'm better at recruiting teachers, giving workshops & writing blogs & ebooks than I am in teaching every day in a primary school. I'm happier.  And therefore a better teacher.

But now, I'm not just an entrepreneur. I'm also a movie producer, which really...I stumbled into.  A few years ago I went on a personal development cruise that asked the question, "What's your dream job?" My answer evolved & changed, but eventually became, "A job in which I am creative, working with family & taking risks while dreaming big."

Last year, my sister & I filmed our first movie about a high school garage band on the verge of breaking up that gets locked in their garage for a day, called incidentally, Locked In A Garage Band.  Is it creative? Absolutely.  Am I working with my family? Well, my sister wrote & directed it, our brother is composing the musical score, one of our cousins designed the movie poster and another cousin is designing the t-shirts.  I'm definitely taking risks (there is no greater financial risk than movies, but also of course the risk that our movie will suck - which it won't, but still...there are an awful lot of terrible movies out there right?).  In terms of dreaming big, I dream of walking along the red carpet at a big international festival, giving a speech to say thanks for some award (you know the one right? C'mon, I know you know it), and all along laughing with our incredible team.

The thing is - I would never have become a movie producer if it weren't for the success I found with Classroom Canada. And I couldn't have started a teacher recruitment company without first teaching in London myself.  So the question, "What's your dream job?" is better answered with a general statement than a specific answer.  Who knows what you'll be doing in 5 years time?  I certainly didn't know I'd be producing movies today, nor do I know where I'll be in 5 years from now.  But I do know that my work will be creative, fulfilling & surrounded by laughter & joy.  Do you see the difference?  By leaving out the specifics, I'm able to focus on the general end results & really, help myself actually get there.  I think the best part is that our dream jobs change as we change.  Humans are incredible that way.  We reach one goal and can't stop there.  We have to keep going.  Changing, evolving & improving.

So, what's your dream job? 

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Monday, March 12, 2012

Introducing TED-Ed: Lessons worth sharing

As a TEDx speaker myself, I'm so excited that TED is now offering TED-Ed: Lessons Worth Sharing.  What a fantastic way to spread amazing lessons by fabulous teachers around the world.  You can even nominate an educator or lesson, or even an animator to help with animating the lessons for the web.  Watch the video above for an explanation of what TED-Ed is all about.

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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Save $25 off your next flight

Every dollar counts when you're moving overseas to teach, so be sure to take advantage of this special offer.  Save $25 when you book your flight through our Flight Centre Agent, Laura Buchan by phoning 1 866 295 4417 and mentioning Classroom Canada.

I've personally had Laura book my flights for the past 3 years and can tell you that she's fantastic.  I know it's tempting just to find a cheap flight online, but Laura can usually get the same deals plus she knows about the baggage constraints for each airline.  When you're making the move abroad, it's really important that you know exactly how much luggage you can take, and which airline is best for going over your limit.  I've gone over a number of times, and always end up paying close to $100 for a simple mistake that I could have avoided by asking Laura before hand.

I have another tip for you.  Check with Laura to see if you can get any free stopovers on your way to London.  Loads of our teachers have had free stopovers in places like Paris, Iceland, might as well get a few days in a place you want to visit anyway. 

Personally, I fly from Vancouver to London so I like to stopover in Chicago to visit my good friends there and break up the journey a bit.  I tend to book a cheap flight while I'm in Europe to places like Vienna & Amsterdam, just because it seems crazy to just go all the way to London and not see anything else. 

Any other tips for finding affordable flights for when you teach overseas?  Please share your two cents below!

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Monday, March 5, 2012

Free Stuff for Teachers That Isn't Just a Big Scam

Today I am pleased to present a guest post by Katheryn Rivas.  Over to Katheryn...

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Photo by photostock

Free Stuff Online for Teachers

The internet has provided our global society with many things. Not only does it offer up hours of mindless entertainment and distraction, but it also provides endless resources that are both useful and educational. The online environment condones a global community that shares knowledge for the greater good. It is through this global community that teachers and educators around the world can find useful tools and activities to use in their classroom for free no matter where they are. However, oftentimes online sources claiming to provide free services or resources can be malicious or just plain useless. While there are many scams and hoaxes out there, these few sites offer extremely useful and easy to access tools for classrooms of all subjects and levels.

1. ABC Teach Tools provides numerous handouts, documents, and activities for teachers. The site is dedicated to providing an online resource for educators across the world and offers several different free pintables and generators that classroom teachers can use throughout the year. Aimed primarily at providing tools and resources for early childhood educators, this site offers crossword printouts, word searches, other word game printouts, desktags, mnemonic handouts, and much more. While there are several free printouts and activities that ABC Teach provides, the site is also dedicated to offering help to teachers on various education related subjects and offering unique ideas for classroom themes and units.

2. Gryphon House is one of the leading publishers of early childhood resource books. This is by far one of the most useful online resources for early childhood education teachers available. With access to various educational publications, Gryphon house outlines activities based on different educational books. The source offers free activities in art, classroom management, infant and toddler education, literacy, math, music and movement, and science. There are several different books relating to each category and numerous different activities that are described from each book. This online resource provides tons of unique and exciting activities in many different subjects. If you find you particularly like the activities from a specific publication, you can purchase that publication for your classroom.
3. A to Z Teacher Stuff provides several different printable pages and worksheets. With pages pertaining to maps, math, nameplates, patterned paper, sight words, and book units, there are several useful things to find here. One of the best features A to Z Teacher Stuff has to offer is the themed printouts and worksheets they offer. Find things to print out along all different themes, including "back to school", the zoo, seasons, dental health, colors, and much more. This portion of the site is currently being worked on, so their full library of useful printables is available at their old pages index at the bottom of the page.

4. Teachers Pay Teachers is a unique site that acts as an open marketplace for educators across the web. There are over 20,000 free downloads available on any subject, type, or grade level you can imagine. The idea behind the site is that teachers can buy, sell, and share their teaching resources to other teachers online. While many things on the site are for sale, there is a large collection of useful material available for free. Download books, PowerPoint presentations, activities, worksheets, toolkits, test preps, reading responses, posters, games, activities, and so much more directly from the site and with ratings from actual teachers who have used the material themselves.

About the Author
This guest post is contributed by Katheryn Rivas, who writes on the topics of online university. She welcomes your comments at her email Id:

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