Ten Fun Facts About Teaching in China {What It Is Actually Not}

 

This my 17th Spring Festival in China, and after teaching here for as many years I thought it would be fun to share some facts with you. This post is about Ten Fun Facts about Teaching in China, however, it is actually how teaching in China is not what you thought it would be!

Fact #1:

Teaching in China is NOT boring! It can actually be quite fun: children truly adore foreign teachers, and if you get to experience lots of new thing.

Fact #2:

Your bachelor’s degree is NOT enough. You need to get a TEFL certificate which is a requirement for a work permit application.

Fact #3:

Your schedule is NOT stable. You can definitely some last minute changes. Oh, it can be frustrating but if you set your mind on flexibility – you will adapt fast!

Fact #4:

You CAN’T expect that everyone will be doing things like it is “back home”. Get ready to the unexpected: yes, sometimes it is like being in the outer space, exploring new planets.

Fact #5:

NOT all your students are interested in foreign teacher classes. Many of them are too preoccupied with scoring high scores in Math and Chinese, hence you will see a lot of snoozing in your lesson, or someone quickly doing their homework. Go easy on them! Just make your lessons fun enough for them to follow.

Fact #6:

Your contract is NOT written in stone. In fact, you will definitely be asked to perform some demo classes and participate in activities that are not listed in your contract. Make sure to clarify all little details, and discuss possible and impossible scenarios. Better yet – you should have it all in writing. Refer to Fact #4.

Facts #7:

Teaching in China is NOT the same as teaching back home. For instance, unless you are a lead subject teacher, or work in an international school, you will not be expected to attend parent-teacher conferences, nor really grade your students. Big relief, huh? I know! It was a huge change for me: coming to short lessons plans from pages of lesson plans and feedback for each student I had to write at home!

Fact #8:

People DON’T always mean what they say. Oh no, I don’t mean they are liars! Quite the opposite: I see Chinese overall as quite pure-hearted people who will do what they promise to do. Of course, it doesn’t always work for employer-employee relationship. But this fact is not about that. It is about … a bargain. Yes, Chinese love bargain, you will see it from students, parents, and your co-workers. So if someone says “let me do it”, they may not necessarily know how to do it, and they will definitely be relieved if you finally take charge as you originally suggested. They are really just being polite! But if you do agree with them taking charge of that task, they will do it at their best capacity.

Fact #9:

Your students are NOT spoiled brats. They really are not. You set the rules from the first time you enter the classroom, and since it is in their nature to follow rules, with your consistency they will absolutely follow them.

Fan #10:

Your perception of whole life in China is about to be changed! I knew so many Chinese friends and lived near Chinese border for years. Yet, from the moment I stepped my foot on China soil, I had such change of heart. I had a huge culture shock (keep in mind, that was 17 years ago, China changed SO much since then). But within a year and a half I couldn’t wait to come back here. So 17 years and counting, I love what I do!

I wish you a happy and a prosperous Spring Festival! May the year of Dog bring you lots of joy and good beginnings. If you set your heart on moving to China to teach here in the year of Dog – good for you. And I wish you Good Luck!

新年快乐

Chinese New Year | Multicultural Kid Blogs

Welcome to our fourth annual Chinese New Year blog hop! Lunar New Year, more commonly known as Chinese New Year, starts on February 16. It is the beginning of the Year of the Dog, and we have lots of great ideas for celebrating it with kids! Don’t miss our series from last year, 2016 and 2015, and you can find even more on our Chinese New Year Pinterest board:

 

Participating Blogs

Creative World of Varya on Multicultural Kid Blogs: Earth Dog Year Fun Facts
Bicultural Mama: Chinese Soup Dumplings (Xiǎo Lóng Bāo): What They Are and How to Eat
Crafty Moms Share: The Year of the Dog
Miss Panda Chinese
Creative World of Varya: Ten Fun Facts about Teachin in China {What It Is Actually Not}
the gingerbread house: Simple Chinese New Year Lantern Craft for Kids to Make
ChrissyJee.com: Healthy Ways to Celebrate Chinese New Year

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