I started teaching English as a Foreign Language / Second Language in 2006. I moved to a small city in the Northeast China and have stayed there every since. Initially, I taught at the senior high school and computing college. In the second year, I taught at the middle school. Then I spent several years teaching at private schools such as the New Dynamic Institute (NDI) and New Oriental (XDF). For the last seven years, I have been teaching at a teacher training university as well as teaching private classes. I have also taught a few classes in other cities including remote locations in Inner Mongolia. I have worked at every level from kindergarten up to post graduate adults.
As a foreign teacher working in China, my principal task is to teach spoken English. With younger students, I focus on pronunciation and vocabulary. I use games and activities to get the students to repeat and learn the lesson's vocabulary set. For grade 6 and 7 students, I teach using the Side by Site English course. This focuses on speaking exercises mixed with vocabulary and grammar practice. Usually, the students will complement my classes with a course by a Chinese teacher to learn New Concept English books. High school, university and adult classes are usually for advanced students. These classes take the form of discussion and debate around a set topic. In order to keep the interest of these students, more advanced topics need to be used. Though students need less printed handouts and worksheets, time must be spent by the teacher to research the topic well so as to be able to talk confidently on the topic for an hour or more.
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I have a B.Sc in Civil Engineering with specialisation in Engineering Management from Glasgow University.
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