How Traveling to China Helped Me Become a Better Teacher

Posted by Coronado Teacher on 1/23/2020

China

My teaching experience in China was positive for multiple reasons. 

Not only was I able to see a part of the world that I may never have traveled to otherwise, but the experience afforded me the opportunity to reflect on my teaching. Being immersed in a school (country) where English was not the native language made me keenly aware of how overwhelmed our ELL (English Learner) students must feel when trying to learn the English language coupled with American culture in our schools.

While making me more empathetic, it also reaffirmed my belief in the benefits and importance of providing picture cues in my lessons as well as incorporating  tactile, hands-on activities whenever possible to help students learn and understand the content so they can apply it in their daily lives.

In China my ability to be flexible was also put to the test upon occasion.  As a result, it confirmed my belief that effective teachers need to be flexible  and able to handle unexpected situations.

Finally, I will always value my teaching opportunity in China for it allowed me to experience and to appreciate another culture as I visited The Great Wall, saw the terracotta soldiers, and even ate new foods like dragon fruit.

Ironically, these experiences have allowed me to make connections with some of my students which helps make me a more effective educator.