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An Interview with Claire: Discover Her Story Teaching and Traveling Abroad

Updated: Aug 14, 2019

1. How did you decide to teach abroad?

I decided to teach abroad because I felt like I was missing out on an amazing opportunity that many of my friends got to experience in college. I wasn’t able to study abroad because of my major. A year out of college I was working and my friend told me she was going to Thailand to teach English. I was jealous because I knew she was going to have an amazing time and I decided I had to go with her. Before finally picking my major I was between that and education so getting a chance to teach was one I couldn’t turn down. Check out J2 Thailand's Programs

2. Can you tell us where you taught and how long you taught for?

I was teaching in Sam Phran, Thailand (about an hour west of Bangkok). I was originally supposed to be there for one term but ended up extending for a second.

3. What are your favorite games and activities in the classroom?

For the older kids my favorite activity was running dictation. Hiding the writings in a mixed up order caused them to think harder and actually work as a group rather than the same kid doing the running and the writing. Another favorite of mine is to have one kid with headphones on listening to music and the rest of the class lines up and are each given a word. The person with the headphones on has to guess what word the other is saying just by reading their lips. For the younger classes I would do a relay race or sticky balls. The games keep the kids interested and engaged in the lesson.

4. What skills did you acquire teaching in the classroom?

The main skills I acquired teaching are patience and new ways to look at situations. Whenever I was struggling trying to teach a lesson I would ask other teachers what they had done for that lesson and it was so helpful to see and understand their teaching styles and their understandings of the children’s comprehension. You learn patience because every child in your classroom learns at a different pace but you try your best to get the lesson across to all of them.

5. Did you live comfortably with your salary while living abroad?

I lived in a house my first term and was able to fix it up while still having money to travel. My second term I lived in the nicer apartments in my town, nicer because it had warm water. The warm water was nice on “cool” mornings. I always tried to save most of my paycheck for traveling at the end of term but still had money to go out to dinner with other teachers and to go out in Bangkok some weekends. I tutored two to three days a week and was able to live off that money and only use my paycheck for rent.

6. What did you do in your spare time after school and on the weekends?

In my spare time I would try and work out, explore my town and neighboring towns, and hang out with other teachers. The main thing we all did in our spare time was eat and try and find new restaurants with the foods we missed. I was so happy when I found a place with an amazing grilled cheese!

What other questions do you have for Claire? Comment Below!


About Journey to Teach Abroad:

Become a global citizen and discover life TEACHING ABROAD. Get paid to travel to stunning places, bond with an international community that you'll forever belong to, feel rewarded daily for teaching students who want to learn, and gain the confidence to discover new things. Journey to Teach Abroad is a teacher training TEFL certification course here in Los Angeles that GUARANTEES a teaching job abroad.

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